Chartered Financial Analyst

Chartered Financial Analyst ( CFA) is a title that is awarded by the CFA Institute in Virginia, United States mainly due to financial analysts that the three exams, and be able to demonstrate at least four years of professional experience. To date, over 105,000 candidates worldwide have received the title, mostly in the areas of fund management, business valuation, investment advisory, equity and derivatives trading, financial services, transaction advisory and controlling.

President and CEO of CFA Institute is John D. Rogers, CFA. Nitin Mehta, CFA, is a Managing Director for Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA).

A CFA charter holder is a member of the CFA Institute and at the same time in a "Local Society ". In Germany CFA charter holder in the CFA Society Germany eV with headquarters in Frankfurt am Main are represented. The CFA Society Germany is a registered association ( eV ). The Board of Directors consists of ten people. In addition, the CFA Society Germany maintains an office in Frankfurt am Main.


Exactly, there is the statistic as follows (as of July 2, 2012 ):

  • Number of members: 111 091
  • States with members: 137
  • Number of organizations: 135
  • States with associations: 58
  • Number of title holders: 101 495
  • Exam registration 2012: more than 219,000

CFA exams

In general, candidates take an exam per year over three years, in which a prerequisite for writing the next exam to pass the preceding level exam is. The fees amount to for each test to 650-1005 dollars depending on registration date and a one-time registration fee 420-505 dollars (as of 2012). This fee includes detailed books in preparation, some candidates set themselves further summarize other books for an efficient preparation. The tests passed in 2012, 38% of Level I, Level II, 42% and 52 % Level III.

In all three exams, it is also increasingly ethical aspects, based on the Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct of the CFA Institute. Otherwise, the issues can be described as follows:

  • In Level I, it is primarily an introduction to asset valuation, financial accounting and financial analysis and portfolio management techniques and basic statistical and quantitative methods.
  • In Level II, it is primarily to valuation issues and the application of the learned tools ( including economic issues, financial accounting and financial analysis and quantitative methods).
  • In Level III focuses primarily on portfolio management and the curriculum includes strategies for applying the tools learned and valuation models in managing portfolios of different asset classes (stocks, bonds, derivatives, alternative investments ) for private investors and institutional investors.

All three exams are each completed in a single day without using a computer; the Level I exam is offered twice a year (usually the first weekend in June and December). Level II and III can be stored only on the first weekend in June. Each exam consists of two three -hour examinations (9-12 clock, clock 14-17 ). Level I consists of 240 multiple-choice questions, with the entire required information is included in the question. Since 2009, there are only three instead of the previous four possible answers. Level II is based on 20 so-called item sets, which represent a short text about different topics, follow the six multiple-choice questions. To answer this, the candidate must refer to the relevant text. Level III consists of a three -hour exam with questions auszuformulierenden in the morning and a three-hour exam that is based on the "item sets " in the afternoon.

The candidates who have passed the exam, get about six to ten weeks after their result as passed or failed.

Learning and courses

Learning on the CFA exams is up to the candidates themselves ( self-study). From the CFA Institute, there is only the proviso per exam einzukalkulieren at least 300 to 400 hours preparation - depending on previous knowledge. Through this model reduces the costs of the training measure, compared with a school-centered training measure, such as an MBA.

In addition, there are free providers of materials and courses. Rarely, the courses last longer than 5 days. Offered are also sample exams and shorter courses, usually over the weekend.


As part of the CFA curriculum, the following knowledge areas are covered:


CFA charter carriers are required to make a strict code of ethics in their professional activities result (Professional Code of Conduct ). Observance of the code has to be renewed by the institution of CFA each year, otherwise the privilege to carry the title. Required this is a membership in the CFA Institute.

Code violations can also be punished compared with the CFA Institute. Appropriate consequences are available on the website of the CFA Institute.


Prerequisite for holding a CFA title is the membership of the CFA Institute. The cost of a Regular Membership amount to around 300 USD for a full membership. Candidates for the examinations or candidates still have to wait for the completion of their four years of professional experience, may apply for membership as an affiliate member.

In addition, most charter holder are members of the local National Association. When CFA Institute there is a corresponding directory. The largest local Societies in Europe ( for members ) are:

  • CFA Society of the UK
  • Swiss CFA Society
  • CFA Society Germany e.V.

Post CFA / Continuing Education

After receiving the charter, most of the charter holder continuously form on. Based on these activities, the local Societies, the ready hold an extensive range mostly free events for its members. Participation is for members of CFA Institute with so-called "CE Credits " documents, which are reported for each event. "CE" stands for " Continuing Education ". The CE credits are reported to the CFA Institute and once confirmed in writing in the year.

According to the provisions of the CFA Institute each charter holder is stopped "Annual Minimum Recommendations: Twenty (20 ) hours, including two ( 2) hours in the content areas of Standards, Ethics, and Regulations (SER ) ". The specification can also be achieved through independent study. This technical articles to work through publications from the CFA Institute. The continuous training sessions of the CFA Society Germany eV are usually designed on CE 1.5 points and take about 1-1.5 hours. The awarded CE credits are on the membership page of the charter holder in a database, the CE Diary, implemented and managed. In the annual Declaration of Charter Holders of compliance with the Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct, is to also confirm that these training requirements of the CFA Institute are met.