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Do You Want to Become a Chartered Financial Analyst?

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03 Aug 2011 Print This Post Print This Post

     photo: www.photoxpress.com

    So, you’re interested in trade and finance and investment management – basically helping people manage their money and teaching them how to increase their assets. You like to find out what a business is worth and find out how it can earn more by studying the market. You want to work for a bank or a stock brokerage firm or an investment firm or an insurance company or a regulatory agency. You’re good with numbers and can analyze a balance sheet to see how much a person is earning. You can understand and communicate complex issues.

    Though you’ve graduated from college (or are just about to), you want additional training to increase your expertise and marketability, and make you more globally competitive. You want an international certification that would give you global recognition and allow you to earn more. You want a program that would give you practical knowledge and current skills in the field of global finance.

    So you want to be a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA). EdgeWise.PH tells you how.

    What is the CFA Program?
    According to the CFA Institute, the global association of investment professionals, “The CFA Program is a graduate-level self-study program that combines a broad-based curriculum of investment principles with professional conduct requirements. It is designed to prepare you for a wide range of investment specialties that apply in every market all over the world.”

    What is the benefit of taking the CFA Program?
    Unlike regular college courses where the academic calendar is divided into semesters and you have a certain number of years within which to graduate, you “can take as long as you need to complete the program, and there is no limit to the number of times you can take each exam.” This means you can continue to work fulltime while pursuing your education.

    In addition, the CFA curriculum is kept updated in response to developments in the field of finance. Thus, it is an opportunity for you to
    learn skills relevant to your work.

    What are the jobs available to a CFA?
    CFA charterholders can become financial analysts, investment bankers, portfolio managers, or chief finance officers (CFOs), among others.

    What are the qualities necessary to be a CFA?
    Aside from the traits already discussed above, a CFA should display
    professionalism, competence and integrity. A CFA charterholder is required to adhere to a strict code of ethics and standards of professional conduct.

    How can you become a CFA charterholder?
    If you want CFA certification, referred to as becoming a CFA charterholder, you have to have a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent, as assessed by the CFA Institute) and have 48 months of work experience in an investment decision-making position.

    After studying a prescribed curriculum, you have to pass all three six-hour exams (Levels I, II, and III). Sample questions can be found on the CFA Institute website. Finally, you have to meet the professional and ethical requirements for a CFA.

    When can you take the exams?
    Level I exams are held in June and December. Levels II and III are only held in June.

    What is the format of the exam?
    The exam contains essay, case study, and multiple-choice questions. Click this link to see sample questions for each exam level.

    Are there scholarships?
    In the Philippines, the CFA Institute and the CFA Society of the Philippines (CFAP) offers the Society CFA Scholarship Program. Qualified applicants can avail of a registration fee waiver and discounted enrollment fees for all three CFA exam levels. This means that they need to pay only a non-refundable, non-transferrable fee of $220. Recipients are evaluated according to: financial need, scholastic grades, an essay on why prospective scholars would like to enter the CFA Program, and relevant work experience.

    More information can be found at the CFA Philippines webpage. Application packets should be received by 1 September 2011. All submissions and inquiries regarding scholarships should be sent to:

    MICHAEL B. GARCIA, CFA
    Scholarship Committee Chair
    c/o UnionBank of the Philippines
    23/F UnionBank Plaza
    Meralco Ave. corner Onyx St.
    Ortigas Center, Pasig City
    Telephone No.: 944-8084
    Fax No.: 638-0234
    E-mail address: ekimgarcia@gmail.com



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    One Response to “Do You Want to Become a Chartered Financial Analyst?”

    1. Joshua A. Manalad 15 October 2012 at 11:01 pm #

      how much is the tuition fee? i would like to to a CFA after 2-3 years working in the banking industry.


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