An important set of facts about the CFA on levels I – III

(Last Updated On: February 19, 2012)
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I just stumbled upon here while searching for something totally different, but I’ll throw in my two cents on this topic (trust me, i’m an expert):

CFA is most useful for analysts (e.g., buy side and sell side analysts).  As for traders – it depends on the type of trader. It wouldn’t be as useful for a trader of a purely quantitative strategy (HFT/stat arb / quant equity); yet it may be useful for a relative value arb trader hoping to manage his own fund. The CFA designation is important mostly to outsiders (investors, clients, etc.), although it does help the general promotion potential of anyone in the industry without a graduate degree.  Whether you seek the designation or not, however, I would strongly suggest learning most of the material anyway – at least to the equivalent of level 1 (or level 2 if you trade derivatives or fixed income). If you don’t, you’ll be at a disadvantage (as a trader or a quant).  Just for reference, the depth of material in level 1 is roughly equivalent to what is covered in an undergrad Finance program or an MBA with a Finance concentration; level 2 coverage is comparable to a MSF (MS in Finance); and level 3 is a broad coverage of portfolio management.
I think there may be old exams floating around somewhere – take one and see how you do.


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Hi i there My name is Bryan Downing. I am part of a company called QuantLabs.Net This is specifically a company with a high profile blog about technology, trading, financial, investment, quant, etc. It posts things on how to do job interviews with large companies like Morgan Stanley, Bloomberg, Citibank, and IBM. It also posts different unique tips and tricks on Java, C++, or C programming. It posts about different techniques in learning about Matlab and building models or strategies. There is a lot here if you are into venturing into the financial world like quant or technical analysis. It also discusses the future generation of trading and programming Specialties: C++, Java, C#, Matlab, quant, models, strategies, technical analysis, linux, windows P.S. I have been known to be the worst typist. Do not be offended by it as I like to bang stuff out and put priorty of what I do over typing. Maybe one day I can get a full time copy editor to help out. Do note I prefer videos as they are much easier to produce so check out my many video at