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I'm considering sitting for the June 2005 CFA level 1 exam. I just bought a set of the Schweser study guides, and was somewhat surprised to see the lack of depth of the material. It seems to be more or less a survey of a typical UG bus adm program (and only a portion of it no less). Considering that the MBA will overlap 99% with at least the level one curriculum, how do Adcoms and recruiters (finance) regard this achievement? Also, out of curiousity, how does it compare, in terms of rigor/respectability, to the CPA designation? THanks
Hi east, do not underestimate the CFA. Even the level 1 pass rate was only about 35%. I agree with you that the curriculum is not in depth but in breadth, it is quite astounding. Last summer, I bumped into a CPA who failed level 2 because of the accounting module . I would say the CFA is more highly regarded at schools like Chicago, NYU or Wharton but the Harvard or Standford of today do not give it as much esteem as the former more finance focused schools do.
For those who have done both, which one is harder to pass(CFA) or get a 700(in the GMAT)? Also, do schools like HBS and Stanford consider CFA level 1 a good parameter to compensate for a low Gmat? Thank you,
Try not. Do or Not Do, there is no try!
By leaps and bounds, it is much tougher to get a 700 on the GMAT than it is to pass the Level I CFA examination.
For example, my girlfriend passed all three levels of the CFA exam consecutively, passed the CPA exam at the first sitting, and on the first try, she only managed to achieve a GMAT score in the low 600's.
Eastcoaster, I offer you a couple pieces of advice: Study ETHICS (it could mean the difference between passing or failing); and Level II is much more challenging and is consistent with material in a graduate program.
My own personal thoughts on comparing the two (GMAT and CFA). The GMAT is more of an aptitude test (either you got it or you don't--studying will have less of a positive impact). In contrast, the CFA and presumably the CPA exams rely heavily on acquired knowledge and recall. Hence, study time will be highly positively correlated with test score. Having said that, if you're very intelligent, you should be able to accomplish both!
BTW, just took CFA L1 this Saturday. Pretty confident I passed. Personally, I wasn't as stressed about it as I expect to be for the GMAT given that every point counts on the latter. Unfortunately results won't be out for a couple months.