CFA Levels: Classification and Requirements

Passing the exams for the CFA levels is a very difficult process that takes about three years to complete. There are three levels and you must pass the exam for each one before you can proceed to the next. However there are requirements that you must meet before you can even enrol in the program leading to certification as a Chartered Financial Analyst. You must either already hold a Bachelor’s degree or be in the final year of the program before you can register for CFA Level 1.

Topics covered in the CFA Levels

You must demonstrate intensive knowledge of a variety of topics related to finance in the CFA Levels.  There is a major emphasis on accounting in CFA Level I and the exam tests your knowledge of the methods used in financial reporting, asset evaluation and portfolio management. In CFA Level 2 these topics are still covered in greater detail as well as techniques for analyzing financial statements and the time value of money. CFA Level 3 covers ways in which you apply the knowledge in CFA Level 1 and CFA Level ii to practice in the real world.

Ethics courses in CFA Levels

Ethics is very important in the world of finance and as such in order to pass the CFA Levels you must demonstrate knowledge of the ethics related to this practice. Each CFA level covers ethics so that by the time you reach CFA Level iii you will have covered all the professional methods of managing the money your clients entrust to you.  The Code of Ethics is always present and there are questions related to it on the Level 1 CFA exam.  Some of the common topics covered in CFA 1 in relation to ethics are:

  • Conflict of interest guidelines
  • Integrity of working with clients
  • Your responsibility to your clients.

From CFA Level 1 onwards ethics is an integral part of the curriculum and is infused into all courses. The result is that by the time you pass the exams for all the CFA levels you will truly be a professional in the world of financial analysis.

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