Post-exam thoughts

Hi there, I have completed CFA last year, attempted FRM this year. I am kind of ripped off by the structure of the exam as I got through the full handbook with not much difficulty with doing those practice exams… overall over 75% for each of them. However, the actual exam is another thing. I have been a loyal Schweser supporter for all levels of CFA, but I am overwhelmed by FRM Schweser, so I turned myself to Handbook. Far too much materials are not covered by the handbook in the exam. If I can’t get through FRM this time, should I redo the exam, given my company does not reimburse the exam fee? How does everyone feel after the exam???

hell of an exam …I thought my preps were decent , post exam I can say I didnt know a thing

same here, I know I knew it once. and remembering it vaguely because I have seen it before. One thing I knew well was liquidity adjusted var. but my answer was not in the list. It said we should use the constant spread. But I tried exogenous spread too. but that wasn’t there either. So very frustrated. I spend too much time on that one question and had to make a wild guess anyway.

… strange that analyst forum doesn’t block posting on FRM on exam day as CFA exam.

It was a hard exam, especially due to time pressure. First half i just completed all the questions with only 5 minutes left… That doesnt work well if you skip all the hard questions for later review.

@Sherbeer I totally agree on that LVaR Question , many questions on options were also like that for ex : that volatility smile and skew question , I had prepared options really well from Hull but still many I had to do calculated guesses . if 70% + is the passing score , No Sir I am not even close to that

in this exam knowing vaguely is as good as not knowing , the questions really tested on deep concepts …answer options were tricky to the core , its really difficult to segregate the questions based on the topics (credit risk etc ) . soon I will be signing up for PRM so as to hedge against FRM

This is definitely the HARDEST exam I’ve ever written, and I don’t think the CFAIII next year would come close to this one either. There’s no way I could pass for a 70%, so I was hoping that a lot of people are in the boat so the passing score could be lowered. I needed an extra half an hour in the morning session as I rushed through a lot of the later questions and couldn’t really think into it. And I regret having spent too much time on a number of the questions and ended up making a guess anyway. Not surprised to see myself signing up for level 1 next year >.

Strange, I was hugely underprepared but was surprised by how well it went. Actually think I may have a shot, despite having glanced at the material just once and doing 3 practice exams yesterday. Reading this almost makes me think I wrote a different exam. CFA II and III felt much much much harder.

CFA II this year and i heard L3 was ok ; was hard but not this gruelling, esp the AM part. I almost had to guess something or the other in almost every qn. Not sure If I will score a 50% inthe AM , however PM was ok and 70% is possible if you are prepared… what do you guys think abt those individual sessions?

AM - I just managed to finish all the questions… Fact that I entered exam hall 10 minutes late…didn’t help either…3-4 questions were blind guess… PM - was ok…no time pressure…finished 30 minutes before as I lost my exam ticket and Instructor asked me to produce it anyhow…he asked me to submit passport and only gave it back after getting the ticket… overall…I must say…AM was way above to any GARP practice exam…and that’s not right ( dare I say unethical) While omens were really bad…but I may still pass… One comment one GARP Course Structure I made a mistake in finding Schweser too lte and moving to Handbook…while handbook was good in some areas…I must have relied on Schweser… In CFA…I totlly rely on offcial books…but in FRM…there is no such things…this realization came little too late…

re: LVAR problem - did you divide the bid-ask spread that was given by the average price that was quoted? The spread given was simply the difference in bid/ask prices, not the spread expressed as a percent (which is what goes into the Liquidity Cost calculation).

LVAR answer was D which was also the largest number given.

How about the GARP ethical question about suspension and termination? I wrote all four of them because you don’t know how bad the mistake is. If its small you get suspended without the use to get the designation, if its a big mistake you get revoked,

Yep, I said all 4 as well on the suspension/termination q.

All 4 here as well on the ehtics question. This question was a give-away i guess, where they secrifice one question just to make you realize that there are FRM rules and that you must be ethical.

Was really a tough exam! I have only given CFA-level 1 and it was not half as tough. And it didn’t help that I got more than a few answers not tallying with any of the options …including the one for Bushels, LVAR etc which lead to losing quite sometime cross-checking etc. In the end, I had to scamper to complete all questions. For the suspension/termination question, i selected the one which mentions 3 actions (as per Schweser, I believe). In hindsight, I think each question had some “catch” with it, even the ones which seemed fairly simple.

Pretty tough exam, especially the AM. Had only gone through 35 qns when it was 30mins to go. Wasted lots of time on the Lvar qn and some others - still had to guess at the end. The PM wasnt as bad but those choices were very tricky. I think the AM qns were too hard for the 2.5hrs allotted. For the ethics qn, all 4 is what i chose.

FRM full exam (Morning) one was lot harder than any of the CFA or CAIA exams. No exaggeration. FRM full evening exam is comparable to L2 CFA exam. I prepared for 3 months, assuming that FRM was going to be a tough one, but it is lot tougher than I anticipated. I aced CFA in 3/3, CAIA in 2/2, have a double masters in Quant areas. I am not sure if I will pass the FRM in 1st try. Don’t underestimate this FRM stuff. This is nasty! One difference based visual ‘profiling’ of the exam takers in the room is that CFA and CAIA attracted 30+ age crowd, most of them with 5 years experience. Where as FRM takers appeared to be mostly 20+, many of them college students, offshore software developers, male, immigrants.

I felt the AM session wasnt too bad. PM felt more subjective. The ethics question, I chose the answer that selected three of them. The LVaR question caused me problems as well even though it was a simple equation. VAR + 1/2(constant spread)*Portvalue. But in this case they did not give you a percent, they gave you a dollar spread, so I simply multiplied by # of shares instead of portfolio value. There was another q on the PM relating to the bayesian method for probability. The one stating if the economy is poor, good, or neutral, and the performance of the stock in each. The last bullet point did not tell if the 70% under the poor scenario belonged to constant stock price or decrease. I assumed constant, although the other bullet points had a pattern that would have you believe it was decrease. I too went 3/3 in CFA and 2/2 in CAIA and believe this to be up there in terms of difficulty. On a side note: I was one of a handful of plain vanilla white dudes in this exam. I think this just further cements in my belief that the white folks in america have a irrational sense of entitlement and very little desire for higher education.