Is CFA work experience acceptable in PFP or CFP ?

Hi Friends,

I have around 5 years of work experience in India (non IIROC firm) and looking to get a job in Canada. My experience is in fundamental equity research and was looking to get some licenses/designations (I have cleared the CSC recently and yet to do the CFA level III) here in Canada but it seems that my experience does’nt count towards claiming anything for PFP or CFP…can anyone guide please ?

The CFP recently changed its program requirements that will take effect January 2020, and its a more recognized designation (publicly) vs. the PFP. If you are going to do one, I would suggest the CFP. (I have both designations, but the banks/brokerages etc. prefer the CFP).

You should check the FP Canada (recent name change) website to determine how the CFA designation would allow you to be exempt from any courses etc for the CFP program, but you will still need to satisfy the work experience requirement, in addition to a ethics exam. (Start with the FAQ)

Hi Mike,

Thank you so much for your reply. seems that you are going from CFP to CFA while I am doing it the other way round. From what I read of the website, they mention experience post CFP exam completion. It’s a maze with many many paths.

My best shot is to get into a role with the CSC, since my equity research experience wont be counted for now.

Please suggest if otherwise.


Well in your original post, you didn’t mention the types of roles you are looking for. So, its difficult to say how the PFP or CFP will help you find a job that you are looking for, that matches your skill set and work experience.

I work in wealth management, and am currently enrolled in the TEP program. I’ve put the CFA program on hold for now, as I already hold the CIM designation via CSI. I may come back to it at some point, although I am getting older.

I respectfully assert that age is no excuse for not pursuing the CFA designation.

FWIW, I’ve been a financial professional since 1975. I am CPA and a CFA charterholder. I will say straight-out that, if you are a ‘wealth manager’ (whatever that is) or money manager (the usual term) and if you have CFA after your name, you need not waste your time (or your money) on any other designation.

Until now, I’d never heard of ‘TEP’ or ‘CIM’, so I went to and typed TEP. Many explanations came up, but not one of them had the word “Professional” in it, not did I see anything related to investment management. I believe, therefore, that it is probably what I call a ‘garbage designation’ with no substance. I wouldn’t give it 30 seconds of my time, and I would give fewer seconds than that to anyone who claimed such a ‘certfication.’

The news is slightly better with the ‘CIM.’ According to www.acronymfinder.ocm, it is a Canada-specific designation related to money management. That’s all well and good, but, IMHO, anyone who is really serious about managing other people’s money should pursue the CFA designation. It has no peer. The CFA curriculum is rigorous, and the CFA Institute doesn’t hesitate to sanction any charterholder who gets out of line. Frankly, it was that no-nonsense perspective that led me to the pursue the CFA credential when I was in my 60s. I’ve never regretted the time or money I invested in obtaining it.

Yep. If your intended audience has never heard of it, then it’s totally worthless, no matter how difficult it is to obtain.

And if it has recognition, but so easy to get that a trained monkey can do it, it’s pretty worthless, too.

Agree on all counts.

A question, Greenman72, if you don’t mind: Are you suggesting that “your intended audience” has never heard of the CFA designation? Just wondering.

^That’s exactly what I’m saying.

I started my CFA program when I lived in a big city. However, while I was on L2, I moved to a relatively small town that’s a thousand miles from nowhere. Now I’m a CPA/retail FA, which makes the CFA overkill. In fact, there are very few people out here who know anything about it, which pretty much makes it worthless.

It’s not worthless. What’s worthless is that you don’t know how to market a designation, the possession of which is probably unique to you in your small town. I, too, live near a small town - its population is 7,200. The nearest city with a population of 100,000 is 60 miles from here.

I’ve been able to market my CFA designation hereabouts quite easily. It’s a simple matter of making appointments with commerical lenders, high-end life-insurance agents, and other influential members of the town’s business community and explaining (1) how the CFA is different from other designations (I’m also a CPA), (2) the CFA’s both-broad-and-deep coverage of important topics, and (3) the CFA Institute’s zero tolerance for ethical chicanery. It’s an easy sell made easier by the fact that I truly believe what I’m saying.

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How can I make $100k a year?


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