Considering retaking after failing in 2015

Hi everyone,

I failed L3 in 2015. Band 10… The worst position to be in.

Instead of retaking it in 2016, I took time to find a new job and succeeded landing one in M&A.

After a few years and even though it has limited use in my job and region, I am considering retaking it. Plus I don’t like unfinished jobs.

In the mean time I got married and obviously have less time to cram through the text books.

I suppose the curriculum changed quite a bit since. Back in 2015 I used Schweser Notes, is it still the material of choice? Or shall I simply sitck to the official text books?

To test if I can dedicate so many hours studying, I am taking Finra’s SIE exam (much lighter) to see how it fits my pro and private schedules.

I failed once and my take on this is you can’t rely on Schweser alone. The blue boxes examples and the many of the exhibits on the CFAI text need to be covered.

Hi there,

So I passed FINRA’s SIE exam! It wasn’t easy in parallel to such a taxing job, but I did it.

When I said I used Schweser back in the days, I should have clarified that I also completed CFAI’s blue boxes of courses.

August 22’s window is closed so I’m considering Feb 23’s, but that time of the year is usually atrociously busy at work.

Hi everyone,

Fast forward 6 months. So I haven’t yet registered for Feb 23, but I’m changing job at the end of the year.

I’m basically on garden leave until Dec 31 and can clock many hours per day in the next weeks. January should be relatively quiet, February probably busier.

But it still looks like February is too short notice, especially given that I haven’t opened any CFA text book in the last 7 years.

Maybe I’m better off registering for August 23? I usually take 3-4 weeks off that month and could cram a few more hours per day and be done with the exam before returning to the office in September.

Any thoughts?

1 Like

I signed up for L3!

1 Like

I took level 3 after many years break too. I very happy to done and good luck. My break was from 2015 - 2019 and then I failed because too busy. Now I am done. These boards help me during many hours of boredom. I still come back.

Good for you.

Bull by the horns, tiger by the tail, and whatnot.

At the rate at which I’m studying CFAI material, it looks like I won’t manage to get through all the books by August. They are terribly verbose which doesn’t help.

I subscribed to MM’s videos to supplement the readings and they have been helpful so far.

Regarding the readings, maybe I should reconsider my study plan and switch to Schweser while it’s still time?

I’m in the same boat as you. failed in 2016 now back at it. and i agree the readings are verbose. It’s especially tough when you read 100 pages of Equity PM strategies only for the entire section to have a footnote saying “basically all this stuff has been statistically proven to not work and is kinda BS” :frowning:

I managed to get back on track. Buying physical copies of the books was the trick. It turns out I’m old fashioned and can’t study using ebooks.

With the help of vacations I’ll manage to do it, provided I cover 2 readings a week.

So far I’ve been doing good in Fixed Income.

I’m following MM’s reading order. BF’s learning curve proved too steep for me after quitting so many years.

Feeling strong here.

Regarding EOC18 of reading 6, is there an easy way to compute the PV of future expenditures given an inflation rate and discounted at the probability and horizon-adjusted rate?

It’s very cumbersome to type on an HP12c:


And I don’t see which function of the calculator could be used.

Looking forward to hearing about your tricks

If the CFs grow by 3% per year and your nominal discount rate is 2.2%, try an interest rate of (0.022 - 0.03)/1.03 = -0.776699% for an annuity due for 10 years. :+1:

I’m a BAII user, so I have no idea what the HP12C inputs would be. :man_shrugging:

Thanks for your advise, unfortunately this approximated rate is too far off.

I checked out MM, he also says we have to cautiously type the full formula.

If the nominal discount rate is the same for all years, but the CFs vary according to some rule, you could use the CF worksheet.

Unfortunately, I don’t have access to the readings, so I can’t help you more than this. :man_shrugging:

I think EOC20 of reading 20 “Asset Allocation to Alternative Investments” is imprecisely worded.

As of the most recent year end:
• The NAV of the endowment’s investment in the fund was €25M
• All capital had been called
• At the end of the current year, Calixto expects a distribution of 18% to be paid
• Calixto estimates an expected growth rate of 11% for the fund

Calculate the expected NAV of the fund at the end of the current year.

I did it! I passed L3!

1 Like

Congratulations, eveningstar!

I trust that you’re going to celebrate in style.

Congrats!!! :partying_face:

congrats my man! do you mind outlining exactly how you tackled level 3 this time around? what materials did you use? would love to hear what you think worked for you!

Thank you for your messages.


For learning the curriculum I used CFAI books this time, and for the more obscure topics and as a general way to save time, MM’s videos.

For mock exams I used S2000magician’s mocks and grading service. I think that’s what helped me best prepare for the essay questions.

1 Like