Base currency in a Currency Pair? CFA not following the industry standard

Is this a repeating typo in the book or does CFA just doesn’t follow the industry standard when it comes to what the base currency in a currency pair is?

CFA: In the USD/EUR pair, EUR is the base currency so USD/EUR 1.2 means 1 EUR = 1.2 USD

Literally everyone else: In the USD/EUR pair, USD is the base currency so USD/EUR 1.2 means 1 USD = 1.2 EUR


They simply don’t follow industry standard.

Surely you noticed this at Levels I and II.


I didn’t know what’s the usual practice before so didn’t pay attention.

My pleasure.

It could have been worse: back in 2008, CFA Institute used two notations – USD/EUR 1.0839 and EUR:USD 1.0839 – to mean that USD 1.0839 = EUR 1.0.

Talk about confusing!

In my opinion, speaking as someone with no real-world experience dealing with foreign currencies, I think the CFAI’s notation makes more sense.

The fraction just seems more intuitive to me…

I agree.