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Who gets more respect: CFA, CFP, or CPA?

If the two exams have similar passing rate (which is around 40%-50%), I would say the AICPA exams are as least as challenging as the CFA exam. Here is my reasoning.

Note that in order for you to site for AICPA exams, you will need to meet certain credit hours in accounting/finance/tax areas and have your transcript reviewed by NASBA(I listed out the requirement for NY for your reference below). This means that CPA exam candidates are most likely better trained or at least grauduated with a degree with Accounting or Finance concentration. Whereas the CFA exam requires a college degree or last year in college regardless what your major is. So in that sense the CFA exam candidates’ education background are more diverse.

With all being said, I do agree with you @accountingnerd that CFA>CPA>CFP… 

Eligibility for Examination

To be eligible to take the Uniform CPA Examination, you must meet one of the following requirements:

Option 1 (120 licensure requirement): If you applied for licensure and completed your education prior to August 1, 2009, you must meet one of the following:

  1. Completed a registered 120 program approved by NYSED (CPA Examination Services reviews education. Complete Registered Program Form), or
  2. Completed a bachelor’s degree with a major in accounting from a school accredited in accounting by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). (CPA Examination Services reviews education,) or
  3. Completed a bachelor’s or higher degree and a minimum of 120 semester hours in the following areas:
  • 24 semester hours in accounting to include each of the following:
    • Financial accounting,
    • Cost accounting,
    • Taxation,
    • Audit and attestation, and
  • 21 semester hours in business and accounting,
    • 6 semester hours (or 4 semester hours at the graduate level) in business law,
    • 6 semester hours in finance,
    • 3 semester hours in statistics, and
    • 6 semester hours in economics.

Option 2 (120 sit rule): If you did not apply for licensure prior to August 1, 2009, or if you completed your education after August 1, 2009 and want to sit before completing 150 semester hours, you must meet each of the following:

  • 120 semester hours of college level education;
  • A course covering each of the following:
    • Financial accounting,
    • Cost or management accounting,
    • Taxation,
    • Audit and attestation.

Option 3 (150 licensure requirement): If you applied for licensure or completed your education after August 1, 2009 and have completed 150 semester hours, you must meet one of the following:

  1. Completed a registered 150 program approved by NYSED (CPA Examination Services reviews education. Complete Registered Program Form), or
  2. Completed a master’s degree with a major in accounting from a school accredited in accounting by AACSB (CPA Examination Services reviews education), or
  3. Completed a bachelor’s or higher degree and a minimum of 150 semester (225 quarter) hours in college level education to include the following:
  • 33 semester (49.5 quarter) hours in accounting to include each of the following:
    • Financial accounting,
    • Cost accounting,
    • Taxation,
    • Audit and attestation,
    • Accounting research, and
    • 36 semester (54 quarter) hours in general business.

Note: The following two subjects: Communications and Ethics and Responsibilities, arerequired and may come from accounting or business.

Option 4: Fifteen years of public accounting experience acceptable to the State Board for Public Accountancy may be substituted for education for the admission to the examination. This experience must be earned under the direct supervision of a U.S. certified public accountant or a New York State public accountant, involve the application of U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and generally accepted auditing standards(GAAS), and contain substantial exposure to auditing and financial statement preparation. The New York State Education Department reviews experience (Complete Form 4 – Applicant Experience Record and Form 4B – Verification of Experience by Supervisor).

All official transcripts and/or foreign evaluations must be submitted to CPAES at the time of application.

^^It varies by state.. much easier to be licensed CPA in California than New York.. (no college couse requirement)..



The requirement to have the CPA license is more robust than earning the charter (assuming you passed the exams).  CFA, you just BS your way and boom they give it to you.  Look at the job survey of charterholders….almost 25% are in reporting, compliance, audit also known as back office. 

CPA on the other hand is quite robust in how you bceome licensed.  Also to note is that only CPAs can sign off on year end audits, K1s, some regulatory and tax documents at hedge funds.  CFA gives you no added responsibility…..non cfas can analyze, talk on tv shows, disseminate reports, etc..yeah yeah you need to pass a whimpy series whatever exam for sell side…but you get my point

 

Be yourself. The world worships the original.

It’s obvioulsy between CFA and CPA… CFP is a joke. Those that know what the CFA is and how difficult the exams are respect it more than the CPA hands down. I’ve heard from many people (some on this forum) that have taken both the CFA and CPA, and that all of the CPA exams combined is about as difficult as level 1…

Plus, CPAs are a dime a thousand…

Hey Hamilton, have a holly jolly Christmas.

Because there are more CPAs does not mean it is not as worthy as CFA or as valuable as CFA….over 350,000 living Harvard alumni. 

I do agree that people who know about the CFA exams, including CPAs, acknowledge that it is tough….but both CPA and CFA have pass rates ~50%.  finish 5th out of 10 people in the race and you get the charter and the license.

Be yourself. The world worships the original.

infinitybenzo wrote:

Because there are more CPAs does not mean it is not as worthy as CFA or as valuable as CFA….over 350,000 living Harvard alumni. 

I do agree that people who know about the CFA exams, including CPAs, acknowledge that it is tough….but both CPA and CFA have pass rates ~50%.  finish 5th out of 10 people in the race and you get the charter and the license.

Yes, but you can retake any part of the CPA many times a year (4?) and take them in any order. Plus, there’s much less material for each exam vs the CFA. Again, people that have taken both say that the difficulty of/amount of material in all sections of the CPA exam is equivalent to level 1 of the CFA exam… wish I could find Greenman’s analysis of CFA vs CPA… spells it out pretty nicely.

Hey Hamilton, have a holly jolly Christmas.

not arguing on all of your points.  I agree on many.

However, I don’t agree that CFA is somehow more prestigious or professional than CPA.  They are both top licenses or exams you can take in their respective fields.

For my points listed above, that CPA is required to sign off on year end audit, K1s, taxes for hedge funds and companies, makes me, relunctantly, lean towards CPA in terms of professionalism.


Be yourself. The world worships the original.

IsThereAny wrote:
It’s obvioulsy between CFA and CPA… CFP is a joke.

I agree the CFP is a joke, the sad thing is I might actually do this program. crying

why in the whole wide world would you need the CFP?

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

RIP

igor555 wrote:
why in the whole wide world would you need the CFP?

Vancouver HNW industry. And CFP might actually have some good/boring local tax stuff? Realistically though it’s for show, you know, because you are “certified” or whatever. ;)

purealpha wrote:

igor555 wrote:
why in the whole wide world would you need the CFP?

Vancouver HNW industry. And CFP might actually have some good/boring local tax stuff? Realistically though it’s for show, you know, because you are “certified” or whatever. ;)

going out on your own?

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

RIP

That’s easy – the client that made $1 billion building a startup from scratch that all three provide services to!

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

some interesting fact is that as most of you guys know, almost 25% of CFA holders work in the reporting, accounting jobs or simply Back Office.  But CFA curriculum, as most of us can agree on is not geared for BO jobs.  Very few people would say “I want to be BO, doing settlments and/or fund accounting…this is why I am studying for the CFA.”

But most people with CPA, in fact everyone I know with a CPA work in the area of taxation, audit, etc.  CPA was built for these jobs and pepole actually take the CPA to be in these fields.  Maybe this is due to the more robust work experience from the CPA and the fact that every 50 states require you to have certain credits of accounting courses….

Same for CFP…people study CFP to become a wealth or a financial advisor….CFP does its job…..

Of course people will say “accounting jobs, Big 4 jobs are dime a dozen, easy to get in blah blah and that finance jobs are like landing on a moon and you get to make million $ a month so cannot compare”  hahaha well in this case don’t compare them at all in the first place….

Be yourself. The world worships the original.

CADFX wrote:

baklava wrote:

I have no idea what CPA is and no intention to do it after CFA.

To those who think everyone knows CPA but not many know CFA. this is ********.

Haha - CPA is much more recognized that the CFA charter is. By probably 5 times over.It’s the largest body of accountants in the world, if you haven’t heard of it then you must not work in finance.

I must not work in finance which means accounting to you. ok. that is not what i am doing anyways.

I have both designations. Can tell you nobody cares if you’re working for somebody other than yourself. I declare this post nonsense.

Let me tell you something. I haven't even begun to peak. And when I do peak, you'll know. Because I'm gonna peak so hard that everybody in Philadelphia's gonna feel it.

- Dennis Reynolds

Irruminati wrote:
I have both designations. Can tell you nobody cares if you’re working for somebody other than yourself. I declare this post nonsense.

its up to you to sell your skills, abilities, and designations. If you go into salary negotiations or any meeting and the consensus is that they don’t care, they sold you on that, and you failed to sell them.

We’re gonna win so much, you may even get tired of winning. And you’ll say, 'Please, please. It’s too much winning. We can’t take it anymore. Mr. President, it’s too much.' And I’ll say, 'No, it isn’t!' We have to keep winning!

Ramos4rm wrote:

This is the dumbest question. You’re literally fishing for people to say CFA.

LOL true