Completing the entire CFA program in 90 days

I bet that if the CFA exams were offered once-a-month rather than once-a-year, there would be tons of candidates that would knock off all three exams with 3 months of intense fulltime study.


Some people would do it. If you study full time, you can easily do 200 hours a month. So, passing each level in a month should be easy for many people. Many people are unemployed for 3 months or more.

I don’t think this would be a good outcome, as many unemployed people will be focusing 100% on CFA exams for a quarter of a year or more, rather than looking for jobs.

Probably why CFAI doesn’t go to a computer-based format like the CPA exam, so that people couldn’t take all three exams within a certain timeframe. It’s totally ridiculous these exams aren’t offered more that once/yr (other than L1).

It’s quite possible that many would pass in three months but the integrity of the exam would also be comprimised if offered more often. From everything I’ve read about exam construction, many months go into laying out each exam and creating the questions.

I suspect L2 will be offered in December as well in the not too distant future. Unless L3 goes all multiple choice, something I hope does not happen, I don’t think it will be offered more than once per year.

I think about all the material covered in the exams, and I don’t think very many people would knock them out in 3 months, or even 6.

Yes, plenty of people would pass in less than the 3-4 years it typically takes now, but if you think that 1 month of preparation or even two is going to be enough to get L2 out of the way (or L3), then I think you are massively underestimating what it takes to pass these exams.

If you have a job, then one month is probably not enough. If you study full time, one month is probably enough time. If you can work 9 hours a day for 30 days, that’s already 270 hours.

If someone has the dedication to study 9 hours/day for 30 days straight, and the ability to absorb and apply what they studied, I posit that it is highly unlikely that said person is unemployed.

yes, full time all 3 levels is not even 2 full semesters of work…

Then why don’t I have any job offers?

Many talented and hardworking people are unemployed for months at a time. In fact, there is a positive relationship between unemployment duration and compensation at previous jobs.

Someone is always the exception, now get back to finding serial killers and keeping us all safe.

Didn’t Bleron try to pass all 3 levels in a combined 30 days (10 days each level)? I believe he never made it passed level 2.

3 levels in 3 months. No way. You must be burned out and tearing your hair out midway into the 2nd month, and definitely by the 3rd

I imagine the pass rate would go down, because people wouldn’t be as well prepared for an exam that’s offered monthly as they are for one that’s offered annually. The CFAI could make a lot more money if they offered the exams monthly. Especially if they required people to buy the books each month.

Can you please explain by way of illustration?

I forgot where I read this, but it’s probably on the internet somewhere. Basically, high paid people have specialized skills, so they tend to only look for jobs that are similarly specialized. Specialized jobs are harder to find - it’s not like walking down to Safeway after you are fired from being a cashier at Whole Foods. Furthermore, people who are already rich can afford to be unemployed for long periods of time. So, they will not accept jobs that they dislike.

Yes, the explanation is that higher pay is generally because of better skill sets and networks. However, as you get past a certain point, those skills are useful only in a niche context. It simply can take longer for a pace with that niche to open up and find you/you find it.

One way to reduce the time is to accept lower pay for the same work or less skilled work. And we all know how easy that is to do, particularly if it means we close off our attractiveness to the higher paid stuff.

Thanks, I get it. You might also add that the application, interviewing and selection process for highly specialised jobs takes a long time. You cant get hired on the spot like a construction worker.

The CPA exam is formatted where one could take all sections in one testing window. What do people do instead of diligently studying? A lot of them show up unprepared and fail sections multiple times. In fact, the pass rate for passing all sections on the first try is something like the low 30s. However, 80% eventually pass due to the availabilty of testing windows. Personally, I don’t mind the one-time a year availabilty of the CFA exam. I’d rather have a designation that I can be proud of instead of one that 80% of applicants eventually get.