# Minimum Passing Score: either 154 or 165

According to http://www.cfainstitute.org/cfaprog/overview/pdf/IntoOur5thDecade.pdf the Minimum Passing Score is decided by the performance of the top 1%, so I ran a simple scenario analysis: If top 1% achieved an average of 235, the minimum passing score would be 165 If top 1% achieved an average of 230, the minimum passing score would be 161 If top 1% achieved an average of 225, the minimum passing score would be 158 If top 1% achieved an average of 220, the minimum passing score would be 154 the chances for the top 1% to get lower than 220 or higher than 235 are very low.

So you used 240*[70%*(Top 1% Score/240)] to get these possible minimum passing scores? Is this really how CFAI makes their judgements? Is this a blanket score, or do you have to score at least 0.6875 or 0.6417 on every section for the 165 and 154 methods, respectively? In otherwords, can you get zeros on some sections while doing exceptionally well in other areas and still pass?

i think you can bomb a section completely and still pass

if ur overall score is less than 50%, do u still have remote chances of passing the exam?

any individual cutoff for every section??

I read somewhere (though not 100% sure) that if you are right on the borderline of the minimum passing score overall: 1. you pass if you get >70% on ethics (since they add a point) 2. you fail if you get <70% on ethics (since they deduct a point)

that’s probably a rumor. My instructor grades CFA papers every year and he said that’s not true. All you need is the total score. Their emphasis on ethics is already reflected on the weight of this sector in the exam. bostonkev Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > I read somewhere (though not 100% sure) that if > you are right on the borderline of the minimum > passing score overall: > 1. you pass if you get >70% on ethics (since they > add a point) > 2. you fail if you get <70% on ethics (since they > deduct a point)

I am hoping you and your instructor are right…I think my weakest section on the exam by far was ethics.

you can still pass if that year the exam is extremely difficult and the top 1% achieved a very low score such as 214. You multiply 214 by 0.7, which will be the minimum passing score. faraz70s Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > if ur overall score is less than 50%, do u still > have remote chances of passing the exam?

does anyone know what’s the average score of the top 1% this year?

I know this is probably going to bite me in the end. But does anyone feel confident that they passed the exam? I mean, it felt like the 1st half was very doable and then the difficulty did increase alot on the second, but i feel like i made some very smart choices. Like, is it okay to not feel like you completely bombed the test?

yes, afternoon session is more difficult. However, even I know the morning session was easier, after checking books I realize that I still made many mistakes.

15 days before results …

bostonkev Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > I read somewhere (though not 100% sure) that if > you are right on the borderline of the minimum > passing score overall: > 1. you pass if you get >70% on ethics (since they > add a point) > 2. you fail if you get <70% on ethics (since they > deduct a point) This was true in 2003 when a grading committee meeting notes document was leaked out. I saw this document likewise.

really? If the borderline is, say 163 that year, and 5000 people get exactly 163, they only let those pass with ethics>70%?

If that is true (>70% in Ethics) the CFAI would need to disclose it to candidates otherwise they would be breaching their own standards of professional conduct. It’s laughable that the CFAI often mentions “transparency” in it’s literature, yet they can’t follow it themselves.

does anyone else have any idea what the score required to pass will be? 168 is assuming the top 1% aced the exam, which is unlikely. I think it will be 162-164. I figure the top 1% will probably score an avg. of 235. Multiply by 70% is about 164.

the top 1% may score in the range of 225 to 235. Any score below 154 probably is a fail. My estimation of my own score is about 166. I probably made 15-18 mistakes in the morning and 30-36 mistakes in the afternoon. God bless us!

in less than one week, we’ll find out the scores, the longer I wait, the deeper my heart sinks.