Finishing CFA curriculum in 2 Months

Let’s discuss and critique this interesting blog post I found:

“It is very important to finish the first reading of the curriculum at least 20 days before the exam so that we can sufficient time for practicing mock exams. So we have only 60 days left. Many of you must be contemplating whether to defer the exam or give it a try. Just remember that half hearted effort is most likely to end in failure and utter disappointment.”

" Strategy for CFA level I: 60 days – 67 reading. Maximum weightage areas are FRA (Financial Reporting and Analysis) and Ethics. These two subjects constitute 35% of the exam. FRA has 14 readings. But first 3 and last 3 readings can be done in 2 days and are not that important for the exam point of view. The middle 8 readings are the crux. Each reading can be easily done in a day with proper practice. It will take 5-6 hours to read and solve the practice questions provided at the back of the chapter. Keep noting important formulas in a separate notepad. It will help you a lot during revision and will reduce your revision time by more than 50%. FRA needs 10 days. Either you can start with Quantitative Methods or you can start with FRA. It will depend on your background. If you are from a non-mathematical background, try starting it from FRA as Quant can consume a lot of time. You can break your FRA in two halves. In the first 5 days, read first 7 readings and last 7 readings in other 5 days (may be during the later stage of your preparation so that you do not forget anything about FRA).

After FRA, the basics of quant should be done which involves present value of money and discounted cash flow (NPV and IRR). With these two readings, you can finish the 6 readings of Corporate Finance as well. These 8 readings could easily be done in 5 days. For Ethics, you can set 1 hour daily and finish it along with all the other subjects. By doing this you will be having enough of practice of Ethics questions which will help you a lot in the end.

Quantitative Methods and Fixed Income has a weightage of 11.66% each in the final exam. Economics and Equity has 10% weightage each. After doing half of FRA, Quant basics and Corporate Finance, you can attack Equity or Fixed Income. Equity is small and mostly theoretical and can be easily finished in 5 days. Fixed Income is little lengthy and it would take 7 days of yours. Do not forget to practice enough questions. After these subjects, move on to rest of the Quantitative Methods and Derivatives. These two subjects can be finished easily in 6 days and 4 days each considering you are devoting 5-6 hours daily. Now try doing Economics. Economics is too lengthy for its 10% weightage. Selective reading would be good or try studying it from some prep provider so that you can read the concise version of it. Do not devote more than 8 days to it. Now 40 days are over and you are left with half of FRA, Portfolio Management, and Alternative Investments. You can easily do rest of the FRA in 5 days. Portfolio Management has 4 readings out of which 2 are very small. It won’t take more than 3 days and AI can be done in 1 single day. So, you can easily finish it off in 49 days. Rest 11 days can be devoted to your weak areas, practicing more questions and reading Ethics again.

Last 20 days should be spent on 2 revisions. First revision will take 10 days and the second will take 3-4 days. Try to attempt at least 4-5 mocks before the main exam. Once you’re done with it, the chances of success will improve a lot. It is that simple. 5-6 hours a day for other subjects. 1 hour daily for Ethics. Total of 6-7 hours daily for next 80 days and you are through. Now don’t give another excuse that you have office to attend. 6-7 hours daily makes 45 hours for week. If you can study 12 hours on weekends, then you need to study only 4 hours on weekdays which is manageable. You have to do it no matter whatever it takes it to do."


Like I said earlier, this seems doable but is it?

I plan on making a 4,5h daily studying for the next 60 days and I have only passed the ethics section till now … did anyone succeed with this strategy?

Its kinda difficult to assess each others strategy as we’re all different. But here’s a non-typical one I can share with you:

One of my best friend did it in 2 weeks(14*10h=140h) and passed.

He took a break to go running and eat and that’s it. He was basically travelling for 3 months and did not want to spend too much time studying. He did not do mock ups exams. He just focused on KNOWING the material on Schweser and doing the quizzes in them. Then he’d get a great night of sleep and just do it.

The pros of the strategy is that you don’t really need that much revision when you don’t have to review materials from 3 months ago, its all been seen in the last 2 weeks right. You save tons of time there + the practice exams are not mandatory if you can manage to handle the pressure of the exam.

Other important info: gpa of 3.5/4.3 - I recall seing his results, I think he was 70%+ on all except 2, so he probably did not “nail it”.

is there a TLDR version?

Just wanted to check in and say in combination with encouragement form my spouse, this blog post on how to pass L2 w/ 2 months of studying motivated me to get off my ass and start studying for level 2 with exactly 2 months to go. It wasn’t fun because i had to study 3-5 hours per day and double that on the weekends. But i was ale to make the best of the situation i put myself in.

I passed by the skin of my teeth, but a pass is a pass.

Before i started studying I was feeling really down and i thought even starting the process of studying for L2 that late was pointless but the article is right. It wasn’t too late.

here’s the link again

I don’t recommend this study plan. But damn it it’s never too late to try!

I did level 1 in 9 weeks and level II in 11 and felt I was pressed for time with both. Even though I did 250 and 350 hours , respectively, they were not quality hours because you’re sleep deprived all the time. If I had to do it over again I’d start early and avoid this torture.

oh yes. in a perfect world i would have alotted much more time, but i know some people procrastinate to the point where the no longer believe its even worth studying at all. this is a reminder that its still possible even if you start way behind

I think people overestimate the difficulty of this test. Assuming the passing score is 70%, you only need to know 60% of the material to have a reasonable chance of passing.