CFA vs. MS FINANCE

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puneet_singal2003@yahoo.com's picture

I, Puneet Singal, am currently a CFA Level 3 Candidate (June, 2013). I cleared my CFA Level 1 Exam (Dec, 2011) and CFA Level 2 Exam (June, 2012). 

I am applying for jobs since the day my Level 2 result came out in July, 2012 but till now have received only single interview call. I was thinking maybe I should go for Master’s in Finance programme which would provide me with good job opportunities.

Is it advisable to go for Master’s in Finance programme after studying CFA curriculum for all the 3 levels?? Master’s in Finance programme would cover the same topics as covered by me while studying CFA. I don’t think it would be advisable to study all the same things again.

Can anyone guide me regarding this?? Are there any such courses where one can learn something new and get good opportunities to work?? Is it worth spending time and money doing such a course??

puneet.

Reason #2: No Expiration Date. You get free updates until you pass.
FrankArabia's picture

I, Frank Arabia, recommend you watch Keeping Up With the Kardashians starting from season 1 and also watching all of the spin offs. Otherwise, as the seasons go along you won’t understand what is going on. 

MSFHQ's picture

I wouldn’t bother with an MSF. You aren’t really going to learn anything additional and you would better spend your time studying for L3 and trying to network or secure a job that will help you get fill your work experience requirements.

Are you looking for work in the US or over seas? Do you have any work experience?

Master in Finance HQ

www.MSFHQ.com

former trader's picture

Network and develop a pleasant personality.  That will get you further than a MSF.

Telling it like it is on AF since 2007.

CFASniper's picture

You have an awesome surname, Puneet.

10 years of marriage and you’d still be Singal

‘Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes.’

~ Henry David Thoreau

PalacioHill's picture

I did an MSF before doing the CFA.  The CFA went far deeper into material.  My MSF program was very light compared to the CFA, especially in portfolio management.

MSFHQ's picture

Yeah, agree with above. Possibly look at joining a local CFA chapter. Plenty of networking there. If you had only L1 done I might be inclined to possibly recommend an MSF, but no sense now. Unless you got into say MIT or Princeton.

The MSF takes aspects of all three CFA levels, plus some more academic elements, and combines it into a one year degree. Each school presents it in a slightly different way, but with L2 complete I don’t think you will get a proper ROI.

Also, and please take no offense, but I see far too many Indian and Chinese students looking at US masters as a panacea for their employment woes. Unfortunately the US has become a lot less inviting to international students looking for jobs. With the way the financial sector is right now it is hard to get a job without needing sponsorship.

Master in Finance HQ

www.MSFHQ.com

ohai's picture

I’m not sure if more school is the way to go. You might fall into the cycle of {cannot find job -> more school -> cannot find job -> more school -> cannot find job…}. Maybe you are not applying to the appropriate sort of jobs.

“Be aware of this 40 year old men in our country.They suffer from mid life crisis and are always trying to be in the good books of young girls.” -Rahul Roy

former trader's picture

If you can’t find a job with a bachelor degree and in the process of finishing the CFA exams, then more schooling is not the solution.  The problem lies within.

Telling it like it is on AF since 2007.

Alladin's picture

former trader wrote:

If you can’t find a job with a bachelor degree and in the process of finishing the CFA exams, then more schooling is not the solution.  The problem lies within.

i can attest to that

______________________________________________________

You must be the square root of two cause i feel irrational around you

http://alphahive.wordpress.com/

pokhim's picture

Have you got ur 50m swim badge? That helped me.

L3Crucifier's picture

CFA is a waste of time. Sorry to break this out to you so late in the game. The sooner you digest this fact, the easier your miserable life would heed a quick recovery from the trauma (dilemma) you are in.

PalacioHill's picture

L3Crucifier, that is not quite a fair statement.  Like anything else, the CFA is what you make of it and is only another credential like a college degree.  The CFA program has provided education and financial knowledge to thousands of people, even those who only sat for level I and failed.  I think it is fair to say that the material in level I is nearly equivalent to the curriculum of a finance undergrad degree.  That is worth something in its self.  It is true that if you do not plan to work in investment management, the CFA is not worth pursuing and you would be better served choosing a more generalist program like an MBA or MA in management.

former trader's picture

There’s no shortage of CFAs in financial centers and in non financial centers many don’t even know what it is.

Telling it like it is on AF since 2007.

puneet_singal2003@yahoo.com's picture

I am looking to move to Canada after giving CFA Level 3 Exam.

I have done PG Diploma in Business Management (FINANCE) and Bachelor of Commerce from India. I have about 1 year of work experience in India as a financial analyst.

Will clearing Level 3 of CFA help in getting me a good job in Canada or will I have to study in Canada to get a good job in the domain of Finance??

puneet.

FrankArabia's picture

Canada is not a good place for immigrant CFAs. I believe we have one of the highest CFAs per capita. Plus, if you’re looking for a front office job, sadly, there are very few immigrants. I personally have seen at most 3. 

In addition, you will get zero to no credit for your schooling done in India. 

goes to eleven's picture

L3Crucifier wrote:

CFA is a waste of time. Sorry to break this out to you so late in the game. The sooner you digest this fact, the easier your miserable life would heed a quick recovery from the trauma (dilemma) you are in.

Yeah, learning new things, being better at your job, additional credentials, more opportunitues.  All a waste of time. 
FrankArabia's picture

CFA is a waste of time to those who try and fail it. 

cfageist's picture

FrankArabia wrote:

Canada is not a good place for immigrant CFAs. I believe we have one of the highest CFAs per capita. Plus, if you’re looking for a front office job, sadly, there are very few immigrants. I personally have seen at most 3. 

In addition, you will get zero to no credit for your schooling done in India. 

Concerning the CFA per capita fact, wouldn’t that be in Toronto only ? I am in Montreal and not that many poeple have the charter. Then again, considering that english speakers would most likely go to Toronto to get a finance job, you are probably right.

Alladin's picture

i heard that per capita, iceland has the largest number of nobel winners…1

______________________________________________________

You must be the square root of two cause i feel irrational around you

http://alphahive.wordpress.com/

FrankArabia's picture

yes, for Toronto only. But that is where most of the finance jobs are. 

goes to eleven's picture

FrankArabia wrote:

CFA is a waste of time to those who try and fail it. 

It depends on the reason for beginning the program.  If it is only for the letters behind your name, then certainly not finishing would be a waste of time.  But if you are doing it to become a better analyst / portfolio manager, then spending time with in the books is not a waste of time regardless of finishing it.

That said, my wife thought I was going to have a nervous breakdown after failing L3 the second time.

puneet_singal2003@yahoo.com's picture

I was wishing to capitalise on CFA’s global recognition to find myself a decent job in the domain of finance in Canada. But I think it would not be easy as such.

puneet.

former trader's picture

Back offices in Canada are filled with people that passed all 3 levels of the CFA.

Telling it like it is on AF since 2007.

FrankArabia's picture

the CFA won’t help you here especially with your puneet accent

puneet_singal2003@yahoo.com's picture

Trust me, I am working on my accent.

It means CFA can mean a job promotion or knowledge gained but less chances of getting a job only on basis of clearing CFA Level 2 Exam. I feel there should be a campus placement program conducted by different CFA Societies around the globe. Major problem experienced by a CFA Candidate is lack of knowledge of good opportunities for which he/she has the necessary skill. Getting placed off-campus is very difficult i.e. applying for jobs on internet or mailing your CV. One needs networking which could be provided by local CFA Society. No offense to anyone as this is my personal point of view.

I think the same would be the case if I move to Canada. I feel that employers will give due regard to CFA charterholder but I need someone to get me to employers.

Need suggestions. Please

puneet.

MustardAndFries's picture

Hi Puneet, 

I can see where you are coming from, but many (if not most) CFA Societies already do networking/luncheon/panel discussion events for that exact purpose. 

And yes, people will (in general) prefer to hire a CFA Charterholder over a non-Charterholder, all else equal. What, in my opinion, really matters for an employer is (in order of importance):

1. Do they like you? Are you a good fit for the firm’s culture? Are you easy to get along with?

2. Prior work experience in a related field, preferably in the exact field you are looking to get a job in.

3. Do you have a warm contact within the firm? In other words, is there someone willing to vouch for your work or personality?

4. Educational background.

 

I played up to a year ago in an adult league where guys throw 85.

former trader's picture

^ I agree with the above, but I would put 2. before 1.

Telling it like it is on AF since 2007.

TripleAce's picture

Theres only about 100,000 CFA Charterholders across the world :s

Ramos4rm's picture

FrankArabia wrote:

the CFA won’t help you here especially with your puneet accent

LOL old thread that just popped up and I read this…must admit I chuckled. Any updates on the job search poon?

CAIA Charterholder

bchad's picture

If you see MS Finance, maybe you should marry her.

You want a quote?  Haven’t I written enough already???

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