My 2 cents on Schweser

I think they were OK on FSA, Econ, Quanti, Ethics and Alt Assets. Seeing as I probably failed I will have to go through this grind again…I will still use Schweser for these topics. They were totally inadqeuate for Equity, Dervs and Portfolio Mgmt. The item sets on swaptions, silver futures (Schweser didn’t have any practice questions where you had to find future price of an underlying with cost of carry, but this is in CFAI book - something NOT to rely on Schwser for), and Res Inc I totally bombed. I am annoyed CFAI asks so many “first principle” questions. I am OK with applying the theory to solve a problem, but I find it the hardest thing in the world to memorize the 1000 assumptions with the 5000 models they hurl at us. Sigh.

I dissagree with this summary, I used schweser they DID tell you how to adjust fututes for carrying costs/monetary benefits. There was everything you needed to know regarding equity and portfolio management too. I don’t recall 1 question that I thought I’ve never seen/heard this before.

I suppose different people have different preferences for study material, but for me, this is what I found, for level 1, i used only cfai text, read every page of it, and used schweser qbank for practice, did very well on the exam and was certain I passed for level 2, because of the perceived time contraints (I wrote level 1 in dec), I used schweser notes for the 1st time and rely quite heavily on it, and I genuinely thought schweser notes are horrible, not only their coverage of material is poor, they even had spelling mistakes for goodness sake…the actual cfa exam is much more qualitative and conceptual than the schweser presentation, schweser tends to focus on the mechanical aspect of the stuff, which as we can all tell, is not tested heavily on the actual exam (I mean, they do have a lot of calculation on the exam as well, but its not as drawn out and has as many steps as the schweser version)…if I were to choose again, I’d suck it up and read every page of the cfai text again…the end result is I can’t say I’m certain I’ll pass level 2 I thought the previous thread that complained about cfai being unfair with their coverage on the exam is biased…its seen as unfair b/c you took the schweser presentation as fair coverage, I mean, if you read the text, they gave a lot of coverage on minimum variance frontier, and everything was fair game in the text, so you should only blame schweser for misleading or misrepresenting the material coverage

But minimum variance frontier kinda does what it says on the tin. It’s the frontier of… minimum variance portfolios. I didn’t think any question they asked there really took that much trouble, and was easily solvable with a minute’s thought.

i thought schweser was fine this year. even if you read CFAI, you would have missed stuff (actually, probably more due to sheer depth). schweser is more mechanical because that is how you learn the ins and outs—it should make you more prepared for the exam.

well, I didn’t say its not solvable, I just remembered someone complained about minimum variance being on the exam (whereas SML, CAL weren’t, or not as much) and that it was only half of a page in schweser (I didn’t take the time to verify that, and I make no guarantee that my memory is correct), I was just using it as an example…

Whether something takes half a page or five pages to explain is a function of how difficult it is to explain, not a function of its importance. I recall quite a few practice problems on minimum variance on QBank.

KRochelli Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > i thought schweser was fine this year. > > even if you read CFAI, you would have missed stuff > (actually, probably more due to sheer depth). > > schweser is more mechanical because that is how > you learn the ins and outs—it should make you > more prepared for the exam. —nah, I don’t agree, I read cfai for level1, I didn’t miss much, I score >70 on every topic and I can count on 2 hands the number of educated guesses I made after the exam, despite the fact there were twice as many questions different people have different preferences, so my comments were not mean to be all encompassing, its just how I interpret it

at the end of the day, it is the CFAI that tests us…not schweser. Therefore, if I fail - and I am certainly borderline - I am using the CFAI material. I will have more than enough time as well… I mean, seriously, If I fail and I truly want to pass…theres no way I am going to use a smaller notes version…it just doesn’t make sense.

agreed

i think Schweser is being used a scapegoat. The reason the exclusive Schweser users are going to fail may not only be due to the failure to use the CFAI texts. What If you fail again after solely using the CFAI text materials? What, or who will you blame then?

I only opened the CFAI stuff at work when I disagreed with an AF post, those books were basically on display while I actually used Schweser. Schweser covered everything, the only thing I didn’t remember seeing was adjusting equity method for depreciation - 1 pt. I chose to gloss over the minimum variance portfolio, but I remember it being there, just completely didn’t take it as seriousl as ICAPM, market model, APT, TB etc… My bad not theirs.

well, no one suggests that the ONLY reason is schweser, its just a an opinion on the material presentation of schweser vs cfai text in relations to the actual exam my opinion is schweser does not do a good job at it, whereas cfai text does, and i form my opinion from my experience of using both, and for level 2, I used the cfai text as well as schweser notes and found the text was always better at explaining the concepts and more thorough of course different people are entitled to different opinions and many think cfai text are too long obviously, if you fail, the biggest contributing factor is usually either insufficient studying/too much last time cramming/bad time management or inefficient/wrong focus studying method/material coverage…and many people will suggest your performance on the day of is very important too

I found Schweser to be very helpful both for level 1 and level 2. And I strongly believe that you can pass the exam using Schweser books only. Plus maybe some googling for most difficult concepts explanations. After each exam someone blames Schweser, however many people really like it.

I dont think anyone has any right to complain about the MVF being on the test. That was a legit topic all the way. What people in theory COULD complain about was the seemingly minor aspects of the frontier they chose to test.

I found myself nodding off reading CFAI texts and having to reread them. Too wordy - I just gave up and used schweser (almost) exclusively.

What I think everyone forgets is that it’s intended that people use Schweser/Stalla mostly as time-saving or supplemental option. By nature, they’re distillations of the material. IF not, why would they be so much smaller? So, there’s a tradeoff. If you have plenty of time. use the CFAI material, and maybe a study guide to drive material home. If not, you use the study guide as the best option given your constraints. But understand, using the study guide alone is a second-best option. I honestly don’t believe CFAI tries to structure the exam to screw prep providers over. After all - they get their money when you sign up, so their materials are out there. But it’s simply a lot of material, and sometimes people who make tests do a poor job of lining up the weight of the exam with the major material. It’s more a function of “let’s show people how smart we are” rather than “what’s the most critical, core material”. Regardless, on average, I think the most prepared people do better (but the correlation between preparation and exam score is far less than +1). All the picayune stuff does is cut the pass rate. But that’s already pretty well known as a pattern for CFA exams. The bottom line is, it ain’t beanbag - that’s why the designation carries some weight. But it still sucks when I walk in thinking I’m in good shape, get through the AM session feeling fat and sassy, and end up thinking OMG on about a quarter of the afternoon stuff. I was surprised they gave the exam in all 50 states, because some states still have anti-sodomy laws on the books. Worse yet, it’s been several days and they didn’t call, they didn’t write, and they didn’t send flowers. Ah well. See you all in the L2 forum next year…

rrmm Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > i think Schweser is being used a scapegoat. The > reason the exclusive Schweser users are going to > fail may not only be due to the failure to use the > CFAI texts. What If you fail again after solely > using the CFAI text materials? What, or who will > you blame then? you’re missing the point. If I have the time to actaully read the CFAI texts, then I will. I’m not blaming schweser at all, I just think that the CFAI texts might do a better job explaining some of the material. What it comes down to is this - If I fail this time, then why not change it up and read from different material? It certainly can’t hurt. I already have a sound base in which to build upon.

I needed both Stalla and CFAI materials … I mainly used Stalla, but whree the guide isn’t informative enough, I checked with text books … But if I only followed the text books, it would be impossible to review before the exam. Guide books do a good job in arranging LOS, but it lacks depth … That’s why it’s always a good idea to do all CFAI problems from inside the materials and from chapter ends …

Schweser has 5 pages explaining the minimum variance frontier (book 3, pages 195 to 199). It was late at night, they looked boring, I skipped them. Overall, the CFAI texts have too much information, lots of little anecdotes and advice that are only funny to an economist: “Klibanoff, Lamont and Wizman (1998) … show that, although the elasticity [of an emerging country’s closed-end] fund’s price to news is less than one, it is much higher when the news appears on the front page of the New York Times.” Or, (in reference to valuing emerging market equities) “To use a market risk premium that is consistent with the perspective of a global investor, use a global estimate of 4.5 to 5.5 percent”.