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    CFA Course Syllabus & Subjects 2023

    About CFA Course

    CFA or Chartered Financial Analyst is one of the world's most reputed designations in investment management and finance. CFA professionals can make a career in corporate and financial services, banking, management, etc. They also have the opportunity to practise independently and make a business out of it.

    The CFA course is divided into 3 levels; Chartered Financial Analyst Level 1, Chartered Financial Analyst Level 2, and Chartered Financial Analyst Level 3. The exams for all of these 3 levels of the CFA course can be cleared by self-study. The  CFA syllabus revolves around topics such as Economics, Accounting, Money Management, and Security Analysis.

    The credential offered by the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute is globally recognized and is one of the most respected designations in the world. The CFA program has been designed to provide one with a strong foundation of advanced investment analysis along with real-world portfolio management skills. The programme is meant to enhance your career prospects in the investment analysis field.

    Get the complete detail about CFA Course Syllabus and CFA Subjects level wise. Also, know the CFA entrance exam syllabus here.

    CFA Syllabus Overview

    The CFA program includes the foundational knowledge that firms expect as well as the critical advanced investment analysis and portfolio management skills that are needed in investment management today.

    There are three levels of the CFA course. Each level has mostly the same topics and carries different weightage. The CFA syllabus involves core subjects such as investment industry, microeconomics, macroeconomics, financial settlements, equity and debt securities, performance analysis etc.

    The Chartered Financial Analyst Institute may change or update the CFA syllabus depending on the requirements of the industry and suggestions of investment professionals. Students are notified regarding all changes and recent practice analysis methods in the Chartered Analyst syllabus in advance on the official website. 

    Here is the detailed CFA syllabus. 

    • Investment Industry: A Top-Down View
    • Ethics & Regulation
    • Investment Professionalism
    • Microeconomics
    • Macroeconomics
    • Debt Securities
    • Equity Securities
    • Derivatives
    • Alternative Investments
    • Structure of the Investment Industry
    • Investment Vehicles
    • Functioning of Financial Markets
    • Investors & Their Needs
    • Investment Management
    • Risk Management
    • Performance Evaluation
    • Investment Industry Documentation
    • Economics of International Trade
    • Financial Statements

    Also Read: All About CFA Course

    CFA Syllabus & Subjects

    The CFA programme comprises three levels and each level of the CFA course includes a six-hour exam. Candidates have to pass these three extensive exams in order to get the CFA credentials. There is a specific weightage given to every subject at different levels of the CFA course. Following are the levels and subject weightage:

    CFA Level 1: Basic aspects of investment analysis are covered at this level. The level comprises ten topics that will be covered using investment tools.

    CFA Level 2: This phase comprises the application of investment tools and topics that are focused on the valuation of different types of assets.

    CFA Level 3: In this level, emphasis is laid on synthesising all of the concepts and analytical methods in order to learn their applications for wealth planning and effective portfolio management.

    CFA Syllabus: Core Topics

    The complete core topics of the CFA Syllabus are given below: 

    • Ethical & Professional Standards: This subject helps gain an understanding of ethical behavior and the need for professionalism in the investment market.
    • Economics: Economics deals with microeconomic concepts, market frameworks, and supply and demand analysis of individuals and firms.
    • Quantitative Methods: It comprises probability theory, investment decision-making aspects, descriptive statistics etc.
    • Financial Statement Analysis: The topic provides a complete insight into financial reports along with their procedures and standards.
    • Equity Investments: This subject is related to the study of indexes, the security markets, and equity investment areas of the economy.
    • Fixed Income: To learn about fixed income measurement techniques, its maintenance, factors risking it, fixed income securities etc., Fixed Income is an essential topic.
    • Corporate Issuers: This subject comprises stakeholder management and corporate governance.
    • Derivatives: The topic includes the basics of derivatives and the structure of the derivative market.
    • Portfolio Management & Wealth Planning: One subject that deals with a complete understanding of wealth planning and portfolio management.
    • Alternative Investments: Alternative Investments comprise a conceptual understanding of private equity, hedge funds, real estate, infrastructure etc.

    Also ReadCareer as a Chartered Financial Analyst

    CFA Syllabus: Level-Wise

    The CFA syllabus comprises 10 topics, which are further split into their corresponding sub-topics. The curriculum of CFA is vast and differs at each level of study or examination. In the following sections, we have provided the in-detail CFA syllabus for all CFA levels. It is necessary for students to be aware of different CFA syllabi beforehand to study well.

    CFA Syllabus for Level 1

    CFA syllabus topics remain the same across all levels and only the weightage of each topic changes through the levels. CFA Syllabus for Level 1 with weightage is as follows:

    • Ethical & Professional Standards: 15-20 questions
    • Quantitative Methods: 8-12 questions
    • Economics: 8-12 questions
    • Financial Statement Analysis: 13-17 questions
    • Corporate Issuers: 8-12 questions
    • Equity Investments: 10-12 questions
    • Fixed Income: 10-12 questions
    • Derivatives: 5-8 questions
    • Alternative Investments: 5-8 questions
    • Portfolio Management & Wealth Planning: 5-8 questions

    CFA Syllabus for Level 2

    CFA Syllabus for Level 2 along with the weightage is given below:

    • Ethical & Professional Standards: 10-15 questions
    • Quantitative Methods: 5-10 questions
    • Economics: 5-10 questions
    • Financial Statement Analysis: 10-15 questions
    • Corporate Issuers: 5-10 questions
    • Equity Investments: 10-15 questions
    • Fixed Income: 10-15 questions
    • Derivatives: 5-10 questions
    • Alternative Investments: 5-10 questions
    • Portfolio Management & Wealth Planning: 10-15 questions

    CFA Syllabus for Level 3

    The CFA Syllabus for Level 3 and topic-wise weightage are explained here:

    • Ethical & Professional Standards: 10-15 questions
    • Quantitative Methods: N/A
    • Economics: 5-10 questions
    • Financial Statement Analysis: N/A 
    • Corporate Issuers: N/A 
    • Equity Investments: 10-15 questions
    • Fixed Income: 15-20 questions
    • Derivatives: 5-10 questions
    • Alternative Investments: 5-10 questions
    • Portfolio Management & Wealth Planning: 35-40 questions

    CFA Syllabus Important Books

    The CFA books required for the CFA course/ degree and also for the preparation of CFA entrance exams are given below. Candidates should make sure to always study from the latest editions of these books.

    • The Big Short by Michael Lewis
    • Investment Banking by Pearl & Rosenbaum
    • Den of Thieves by James B Stewart
    • Fooling Some of the People all of the Time by David Einhorn
    • The Margin of Safety by Seth Klarman
    • When Genius Failed: The Rise and Fall of Long-Term Capital Management by Roger Lowenstein
    • Alpha Masters: Unlocking the Genius of the World’s Top Hedge Funds by Maneet Ahuja
    • Dark Pools by Scott Patterson
    • More Money Than Gold by Sebastian Mallaby
    • Trend Following by Michael Covel
    • Market Wizards by Jack Schwager
    • Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
    • Conspiracy of Fools by Kurt Eichenwald
    • The Alchemy of Finance by  George Soros
    • All the Devils are Here by Bethany McLean, ?Joe Nocera
    • The Dhandho Investor by Mohnish Pabrai
    • The Five Rules for Successful Investing by Pat Dorsey
    • The Little Book that Builds Wealth by Pat Dorsey
    • CFA Admission 2022
    • The Conspiracy Paper by David Liss

    CFA Course Structure

    CFA is a globally recognised qualification offered by the CFA Institute based out of the USA. Thus, its exam pattern is quite different from the examinations offered by the Indian board. The syllabus covers the entire world of investment management – from equity derivatives to portfolio management.

    From 2021, the CFA exams are being conducted four times a year for Level 1 and Level 2, whereas Level 3 exams will be held quarterly. The weightage in each level varies. The passing percentage across all levels is somewhere between 40-50%.

    CFA Level 1

    • The CFA Level 1 exam is conducted in a computer-based format.
    • CFA Level 1 consists of 2 exams of 3 hours each on the same day, with a 2-hour break covering all 10 topics
    • It has a total of 240 MCQs (120 per exam) with subject-wise bifurcation. 
    • There is no negative marking in CFA Level 1. 
    • The CFA Level 1 exam is held across India during June & December every year.

    CFA Level 2

    • CFA Level 2 evaluates an applicant’s capacity in the applicability of investment valuation concepts. 
    • The exam is categorised into 4 groups that have around 10 topics. The groups are Ethical & Professional Standards, Investment Tools, Portfolio Management & Wealth Planning.
    • CFA Level 2 consists of two 3-hour sessions consisting of 21 case studies with 10 and 11 item-set questions in each respective session.
    • There will be 120 questions –  18 case studies x 6 questions, and 3 case studies x 4 questions.
    • The length of a case study is from 1 to 2 and a half pages. It can include tables and diagrams.

    CFA Level 3

    • The final level is CFA Level 3, passing which the candidate is certified as a Chartered Financial Analyst. 
    • This exam deals with portfolio management and wealth planning concepts.
    • CFA Level 3 consists of two 3-hour sessions. The first session can contain anywhere from 8-12 essay questions (with sub-parts) and the second session can contain 11 case studies where 8 case studies x 6 questions, and 3 case studies x 4 questions.
    • There is also an essay question that has 2+ parts.
    • The length of a case study is from 1 to 2 and a half pages. It can include tables and diagrams.

    FAQs about Chartered Financial Analyst Syllabus

    Is Maths required for the CFA Course?

    Yes, Mathematics is essential for pursuing the CFA Course. It helps one understand stats and other mathematical concepts.

    Is it necessary to have a passport before applying for the CFA course?

    Yes, it is mandatory to have a passport for CFA registration.

    If somebody is unable to pass the CFA Level 1 exam, for how much time should they wait to reappear?

    If a candidate is unable to pass CFA Level 1 exam, they have to wait for at least 6 months and then reappear for it in the next session.

    What are some of the core topics of the CFA Syllabus?

    The core topics of CFA syllabus are: Ethical & Professional Standards, Economics, Portfolio Management & Wealth Planning, Alternative Investments, Quantitative Methods, Financial Statement Analysis, Equity Investments, Fixed Income, Corporate Issuers, Derivatives etc.

    What are some important books for the CFA exam?

    The important CFA syllabus books required for the CFA course and also for the exam preparation are: The Big Short by Michael Lewis, Investment Banking by Pearl & Rosenbaum, Market Wizards by Jack Schwager, Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman, Conspiracy of Fools by Kurt Eichenwald, The Alchemy of Finance by George Soros, All the Devils are Here by Bethany McLean, ?Joe Nocera, The Dhandho Investor by Mohnish Pabrai, Alpha Masters: Unlocking the Genius of the World’s Top Hedge Funds by Maneet Ahuja, Dark Pools by Scott Patterson.
    Show More

    Related Questions

    Is ACCA course is available?
    -Damnpreet -Updated on Jun-10-20222 Answers
    J

    Jayita Ekka, CollegeDekho Expert

    Dear student,

    ACCA stands for ASSOCIATION OF CHARTERED CERTIFIED ACCOUNTANTS in India. ACCA is a professional body for this qualification. It has members and students across the world in 170 countries. It works in the interest of the public, and its members have regulated appropriately.

    Pursuing a Chartered Accountancy course and ACCA is similar. If you want to go abroad, then ACCA course is better. However, if you plan to stay in India, we advise you to pursue CA. You may choose from the many Accountancy colleges in India

    Know about career opportunities as a Chartered Accountant

    If you want to discuss further, you may call our IVR - 18005729877

    Good luck!

    R

    Rahul Raj, Student / Alumni

    Dear Student,

    CFA comprises three levels and each level comprises a six-hour exam. Candidates have to pass these three extensive exams in order to get the CFA credentials. The duration of CFA is 4 years after graduation. So even after completing CA, it will take 4 years to pursue CFA.

    If you have any more questions or want to know particular information about the CFA course, please fill our common application form and our education experts will contact you and provide all the details.

    You can also download the CollegeDekho App from the Google Play Store to stay updated with all education-related information. 

    Please get back to us if you have any other questions or doubt.

    Thank you

    Please suggest me colleges for Chartered Financial Analyst in india
    -sameerramchandani -Updated on Jan-22-20211 Answers
    R

    Rahul Raj, Student / Alumni

    Dear Student,

    Some of the best colleges for Chartered Financial Analyst in India are mentioned below:-

    International Institute Of Financial Markets (IIFM DELHI), Delhi

    Narayana Business School (NBS), Ahmedabad

    You can either fill out our Common Application Form (CAF) here to apply, or you can directly fill out the application form on the official website of the college.

    If you plan to apply for admission via our CAF form, you will have many benefits, such as the support of a counsellor who will assist you free of charge, in any possible way, from the completion of the application form to the submission of your admission fee.

    Call our toll-free number 18005729877 for FREE counselling

    Thank you

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