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2021 CFA Exam Information

Exams That Evolve in Complexity

Each level of the curriculum builds on the prior level and becomes increasingly complex. The chart below explains the differences between each exam so you can prepare accordingly. For details on computer-based exams, visit our CBT information page.

Learn more about the study tools and resources you will have access to as part of CFA Program

Use the CFA Exam Calendar to Keep Track of Important Exam Dates

CFA Program includes a series of three exams: Levels I, II, and III. Use the calendar to view upcoming exams and other important dates leading up to the exam. These dates are subject to change as conditions warrant.  Each exam is administered within an exam window, while the exam dates available to each candidate may vary based on appointment availability at the time of scheduling. All deadlines are 11:59 p.m. ET. CFA Institute reserves the right to close registration and scheduling dates earlier than previously announced as conditions warrant.For the latest information on upcoming exams, please visit our CFA Exam Updates page. 

Note that registration for a computer-based exam is a two-step process. You must first register for your exam; then schedule your actual exam appointment. If you do not see your preferred location, please check back. We are continually adding appointment availability. Learn more about computer-based testing.


  • Registration Window Opens

    13 May 2021Level I

  • Registration Window Opens

    13 May 2021Level II

  • Scheduling Window Opens

    13 May 2021Level I

  • Scheduling Window Opens

    13 May 2021Level II

  • Registration Window Opens

    20 July 2021Level I

  • Registration Window Opens

    20 July 2021Level III

  • Registration Closes

    20 July 2021Level I

  • Registration Closes

    20 July 2021Level II

  • Registration Closes

    20 July 2021Level III

  • Scheduling Window Opens

    20 July 2021Level I

  • Scheduling Window Opens

    20 July 2021Level III

  • Early Registration Deadline

    10 August 2021Level I

  • Early Registration Deadline

    10 August 2021Level II

  • Scheduling Deadline

    23 August 2021Level I

  • Scheduling Deadline

    23 August 2021Level II

  • Scheduling Deadline

    23 August 2021Level III

  • Rescheduling Deadline

    16 October 2021Level I

  • Rescheduling Deadline

    23 October 2021Level III

  • Rescheduling Deadline

    26 October 2021Level II

  • Registration Closes

    26 October 2021Level I

  • Registration Closes

    26 October 2021Level II

  • Early Registration Deadline

    1 November 2021Level I

  • Pay by Invoice Deadline

    1 November 2021Level I

  • Pay by Invoice Deadline

    1 November 2021Level III

  • Early Registration Deadline

    4 November 2021Level III

  • CFA Exam Dates

    16 - 22 November 2021Level I

  • Scheduling Deadline

    17 November 2021Level I

  • Scheduling Deadline

    17 November 2021Level II

  • CFA Exam Dates

    23 - 25 November 2021Level III

  • CFA Exam Dates

    26 - 30 November 2021Level II

  • Rescheduling Deadline

    15 January 2022Level I

  • Rescheduling Deadline

    22 January 2022Level II

  • Registration Closes

    8 February 2022Level I

  • Registration Closes

    8 February 2022Level III

  • CFA Exam Dates

    15–21 February 2022Level I

  • Scheduling Deadline

    16 February 2022Level I

  • Scheduling Deadline

    16 February 2022Level III

  • CFA Exam Dates

    22–26 February 2022Level II

  • Rescheduling Deadline

    16 April 2022Level I

  • Rescheduling Deadline

    23 April 2022Level III

  • CFA Exam Dates

    17–23 May 2022Level I

  • CFA Exam Dates

    24–26 May 2022Level III

CFA Program Costs

Registration costs vary depending on when you decide to register for the exam. Please note, there is a one-time enrollment fee of USD 450 the first time you register for the Level I exam. Take care when scheduling your computer-based exam appointment, as there is a USD 250 rescheduling fee if you wish to reschedule your exam appointment in your exam window.*

All fees shown are net of any local VAT, Goods and Services Tax (GST) or any other sales tax payable by the candidate in their country of residence. Where CFA® Institute is required to add sales tax at the local statutory rate, this will be added to the fees shown during the payment/checkout process. 

For information about taxability related to online purchases from CFA Institute, please visit our Tax Policy page.

*We recognize that in some locations, the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 is making it difficult to finalize exam schedules, navigate travel restrictions, and secure seating in your preferred location. To help alleviate these inconveniences, we have reduced the USD 250 fee for exam changes to USD 25 for all exams in 2021.

$450 One-Time Enrollment Fee

There is a one-time enrollment fee when you register for CFA Program and the Level I exam. This fee will not be applied to subsequent exams. All fees must be paid in US dollars. For more information on enrollment fees and payment options, visit our policies page.

Early registration period applies from 13 May 2021 through 10 August 2021 at 11:59 p.m. ET and is available for Level I and Level II.

Registration is Closed

Standard registration period applies from 11 August 2021 through 26 October 2021 at 11:59 p.m. ET and is available for Level I and Level II.

Enroll and Register

Early registration period closes for Level I on 1 November 2021 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Level III early registration closes on 4 November.

Enroll and Register

Standard registration period applies from 2 November 2021 through 8 February 2022 at 11:59 p.m. ET and is available for Level I and Level III.

Unavailable at this Time

Exams Offered Internationally

We host exams at CFA Institute testing centers located in most major cities around the world. 

Find a Test Center

Master the Material with Helpful Resources

Learning Ecosystem

Access an online learning program with the complete curriculum, custom lessons, personalized study plans, mock exams and more. 

Register to Gain Access

Exam Prep Providers

Get extra study support through our expert exam prep providers. 

Find a Prep Provider

Study Resources and Tips

Prepare with helpful educational content and test taking strategies.

Explore  Resources

Understanding Your Results

Exams are graded as either "pass" or "did not pass," along with detailed performance feedback. Check out the documents below for information on pass rates, how to track your performance, and more details on how we evaluate exams.

Understand Exam Grading (PDF)

Interpret Exam Results

View Historical Pass Rates (PDF)

Take the Next Step in Your Career

Enroll and register for the CFA exam.

Don't delay; complete your registration to access study materials and candidate resources to begin the CFA Program today.

Enroll and Register

Sours: https://www.cfainstitute.org/en/programs/cfa/exam

Most Frequently Asked Questions About Level III of the CFA® Exam

By this point, you’re a CFA® exam veteran. After passing the Level I and Level II exams, your confidence is strong. That confidence is an asset, but don’t take your foot off the gas just yet. Passing Level III is going to take some work. We answer questions every day from candidates preparing to sit for Level III of the CFA exam, and we developed this article based on the most common ones, giving you all the information you need as you take this final step in your mission to earn the CFA charter.

What makes Level III of the CFA® exam different?

The Level III exam is markedly different from the previous two levels. The most significant difference is that you have to write. It’s no longer just multiple-choice questions. If you learn and can recall the appropriate factoids, you’re going to pass the exam. But CFA Institute really throws you for a loop on Level III by changing the format of the test. Level III CFA exam questions are more like case studies. There’s math involved, but it often can’t be reduced to a single equation. Level III essentially tests your ability to effectively do what employers will expect of you as a CFA charterholder.

Because the exam is so different, you also need to drastically adapt your preparation strategy in order to pass. Not adopting a Level III-specific preparation strategy is a primary reason candidates who did well on the previous two levels struggle when they get to Level III.

What is the format of Level III of the CFA exam?

Level III is computer-based and includes both a morning and afternoon session. The morning session consists entirely of eight to fifteen essay-style questions (they’re called constructed response), with multiple parts to help you organize your answer. The questions test your real-world application of the curriculum by presenting you with a scenario that you must solve or advise on. The afternoon session features item sets, similar to Level II. Each item set begins with a case statement and then asks four to six multiple-choice questions related to the statement.

When is Level III of the CFA exam offered?

Like the Level II exam, beginning in 2022, Level III will be offered twice a year, but the months differ. You can learn more in this article about CFA exam dates.

Can I postpone my CFA exam after I’ve registered?

You can only postpone your CFA exam after you’ve registered in specific circumstances, mostly related to medical reasons. It’s easier to withdraw, but unless you withdraw within three days of registering, you will have to pay the registration fees again and re-register. Read this article to learn all the options you have if you think you can’t take the exam on the scheduled date.

What subjects are tested on Level III?

Candidates preparing for the Level III exam are not tested on all the topics that were part of the Level I and Level II exams. Here’s what you will be tested on:

  • Ethics
  • Economics
  • Equity Investments
  • Fixed Income
  • Derivatives
  • Alternative Investments
  • Portfolio Management

The topic that is most tested on the Level III CFA exam is Portfolio Management.

What are the topic weights for the exam?

Each year, Level III exam topic weights are subject to change at the discretion of CFA Institute. Here are the topic weights for the June 2021 Level III exam:

TopicExam Weight
Ethics10–15%
Economics5–10%
Equity Investments10–15%
Fixed Income15–20%
Derivative Investments5–10%
Alternative Investments5–10%
Portfolio Management35–40%

How much time should I spend studying for Level III of the CFA exam?

While CFA Institute recommends candidates spend a minimum of 300 hours preparing for each level of the CFA exam, a June 2017 survey found that candidates actually spent an average of 335 hours preparing for Level III.

How difficult is the Level III exam?

The Level III CFA exam is challenging because, as detailed previously, the exam format is quite a bit different than the Level II and Level I formats.

What is the Level III CFA exam pass rate?

The pass rate for the June 2019 Level III exam was 56%, and it usually falls within the 50-57% range. It’s important to remember that everyone sitting for Level III has already passed the first two levels. So these are the best of the brightest candidates, and still only slightly more than half passed.

How is the Level III exam graded?

CFA® exam grading is done by machines and charterholders. CFA Institute then uses a methodology to determine a minimum passing score that is applied to each exam. Read this article for a breakdown of how the whole process works.

How much does it cost to sit for Level III?

What you’ll pay to sit for Level III of the CFA exam varies depending on when you register. If you enroll before the early registration deadline, you will pay $700. The cost of registering by the standard deadline is $1,000. Registering early means you have extra money to invest in CFA exam prep materials. You’ll also have a longer time frame over which to spread your preparation.

Hopefully, this article answers most of your questions about Level III of the CFA exam. If you have additional questions, please reach out to our Student Support team. When you begin planning to sit for the exam, we strongly suggest watching Kaplan Schweser Level III manager Stuart Jackman’s video How to Pass Level III of the CFA Exam as a starting point.

Sours: https://www.schweser.com/cfa/blog/become-a-cfa-charterholder/most-frequently-asked-questions-about-the-level-3-cfa-exam
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Level III CFA® Exam Structure

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Exam Structure and Duration

CFA Level III Exam Question Format

CFA Exam Constructed Response (Essay) Format

The first session of the CFA Level III exam is comprised of 8 to 11 vignettes followed by several questions that require a written response. There will be some multiple-choice questions in this session, as well. For example, you may be asked a multiple-choice question to select the portfolio (A, B or C) that meets a particular objective, followed by an essay question to justify that response. There also may be some numerical entry questions, where only a number is required, with no opportunity to show work. The majority of the questions, though, will be traditional essay.

The questions in the essay session have varying point values. At the start of each essay vignette, the total point value for that vignette will be stated. For time management purposes, consider 1 point to equal 1 minute of time to be spent on that essay vignette. 

Formatting Conventions Used for Level III Exam, Essay Portion

At Level III, the first session will be vignette-supported essay sets that have items with three different methods of entering a response: essay, numerical entry, multiple choice. 

  • Essay questions
  • In the question stem, command words will be used and will be bolded.
  • A text box is available for the response.
  • If more than one answer is requested, (for example, “Explain, with two reasons…”), the following note is included: 
    “Provide each response in a separate paragraph”. 
    Bullet points are acceptable, as well. An important message to note – when asked to provide more than one response, the responses will be evaluated up to the number requested, and in the order presented by the candidate. Anything more than the number requested will not be evaluated.
  • A calculation could be presented as an essay or a numerical entry.
  • An essay text box will accept typed words and numbers. Note that a correct numerical value typed in the essay box by itself receives full credit – formulas and explanations are not required. If a candidate chooses to do so, they may describe steps used in the calculation or show values using either a math editor function or typing out variables in an equation.
  • A numerical entry response box will only accept numbers, commas and a decimal point. There is no room to show work. A question may contain a note with specific guidance on how to format the answer, such as: 
    Provide your answer as a percentage, rounded to one decimal place. 
    10.8 %
  • When a multiple-choice question format is used in the essay portion of the exam, it is possible that there may be more or less than 3 answer choices. There are no bolded command words used in multiple-choice questions.
  • Items within an essay set may be related to each other. Two examples are presented:
  • Example 1 
    Item 1 is a multiple-choice question: 
    The bond that best meets the advisor’s objective is: 
    (You will be asked to justify this response when answering the 
     next question.) 
    A:    Bond X. 
    B:    Bond Y. 
    C:    Bond Z. 
     
    Item 2 is the related essay question: 
    Justify your previous response with two reasons. 
    Note: Each justification should be in a separate paragraph.
  • Example 2 
    Item 1 is a multiple-choice question: 
    Select the strategy that best meets the client’s requirements.  
    (You will be asked to explain why the other two strategies are less appropriate in the next question.) 
    A:    Put spread 
    B:    Covered call 
    C:    Cashless collar 
     
    Item 2 is the related essay question: 
    Explain why the two strategies not selected in the previous question are less appropriate, referencing two characteristics for each
    Note: Each strategy explanation, with its two characteristics, should be in a separate paragraph. 

CFA Exam Item Set Format

The second session of the CFA Level III exam is comprised of 44 multiple choice items, each worth 3 points. Each item set on the CFA exam consists of a vignette followed by either 4 or 6 multiple-choice questions.

All questions must be answered based on the information in the vignette. Hence, the items are not free-standing, as in the CFA Level I exam. You will need to refer back to vignette before answering each item.

The CFA® Program curriculum topic areas for Level III will  be randomly placed on the exam. All topics may be covered in either the first or second sessions, and possibly both sessions. Each vignette will begin with a statement of the topic and total point value. For example:
TOPIC: ECONOMICS 
TOTAL POINT VALUE OF THIS QUESTION SET IS 15 POINTS

Example Level III Exam Questions

Below is a link to examples of Level III item set questions.

Sours: https://www.cfainstitute.org/en/programs/cfa/exam/level-iii

CFA Level III

Level 3 Exam Candidates Who Didn’t Pass - Remember - FAIL = FIRST ATTEMPT AT LEARNING

For those of you who didn’t pass your CFA L3 Exam - remember this: Fail = First Attempt in Learning. If you didn’t pass - shake it off, get focused, get ready to learn. If what you did, didn’t work - start again. The L…

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01307 June 16, 2021 Join the Level III CFA Candidates Group

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Sours: https://www.analystforum.com/c/cfa-exam-level-iii/7

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Level 3 CFA® Exam: 2021 Dates & Differences


Level 3 exam is the last of the three levels of CFA exam. To take your level 3 exam, first you need to pass your level 1 and level 2 exams. Passing all the 3 levels is a prerequisite for getting your CFA designation.

As of 2021, CFA exam is moving to computer-based testing. In 2021, the level 3 exam will be organized in May, September (this is the so-called August exam window), and November. As of 2022, level 3 is going to be held twice: in May and November.



2021 Level 3 CFA Exam Dates

25 May - 1 June*


0 days until the exam

25 May - 1 June*


0 days until the exam

1 - 8 Sept*


0 days until the exam

1 - 8 Sept*


0 days until the exam

23 - 25 Nov*


33 days until the exam

23 - 25 Nov*


33 days until the exam


Set Up Level 3 Study PlanSet Up L3 Study Plan



2022 Level 3 CFA Exam Dates

In 2022, level 3 CFA exam dates (windows) are available in May and November. The May 2022 level 3 CFA exam dates are from 24 to 26 May 2022. The registration for the May 2022 level 3 exam opens on 20 July 2021. The November window is not available yet.

24-26 May*


215 days until the exam

24-26 May*


215 days until the exam

IMPORTANT!

* The dates indicate the exam window when you can self-schedule your level 3 exam.


Set Up Level 3 Study PlanSet Up Level 3 Study Plan


2021/2022 Level 3
CFA Exam Fees
& Registration Deadlines

Each time you register to take and retake your level 3 exam, you'll have to pay a specific exam registration fee. The amount of the fee depends on when you choose to register for the exam. Before you register, check if you're eligible for any of CFA Institute scholarships. They can reduce your exam cost substantially.

May 2021 FEES
$700
early
fee
begins: 20 Aug | ends:
3
NOVEMBER 2020
$1,000
standard
fee
begins: 4 Nov | ends:
23
FEBRUARY 2021

Note: The deadlines end at 11:59 p.m. ET.


Create FREE Level 3 Study Plan FREE L3 Study Plan


How Level 3 CFA Exam Differs:
7 Topics, Constructed Response Questions, Higher Pass Rate


1. CFA Program Curriculum Contents

In your curriculum, you will find 7 topics, not 10. You will no longer be tested on Quantitative Methods, Corporate Finance, nor Financial Reporting and Analysis. At this exam level, the major focus is on Portfolio Management and Wealth Planning with the weight of 35-40%.


CFA Exam: Level 3 TopicsTopic Weight (%)
1Economics5-10
2Alternative Investments5-10
3Derivative Investments5-10
4Equity Investments10-15
5Ethical and Professional Standards10-15
6Fixed Income Investments15-20
7Portfolio Management and Wealth Planning35-40

2. Level 3 Constructed Response Questions + Item Sets

2021 level 3 CFA exam will consist of 2 exam session, approx. 135 min each, with an optional break meanwhile.

In the first session, you can expect 8-11 open-ended questions commonly known as constructed response questions. Such questions begin with a case study (vignette) followed by several related items. Some of the items may be multiple-choice questions but the majority will require your written response. Note the command words (in bold) and approximate answer time given to guide you through the answer process. Constructed response questions cover specific topic areas and require clear and accurate answers:

CFA Level 3: Constructed Response Questions

In 2014, all open-ended questions were about different areas of Portfolio Management. For time management purposes, assume that 1 point = 1 minute. That's how it worked for paper-based exams and so it continues for computer-based testing.

In the second session, you can expect 44 multiple-choice questions arranged into item sets (structured like for level 2 CFA exam).

To sum up, as the CFA exam transitions to CBT, the exam day experience will change. The total testing time will be reduced to max. 4.5 hours and:

  • each exam session will be approx. 135 min long,
  • session 1 is going to have 8-11 open-ended questions,
  • session 2 is going to have 44 multiple-choice questions, each worth 3 points,
  • multiple-choice questions will be formed into item sets topped by vignettes, i.e. case description to which the questions refer,
  • there will be six or four multiple-choice questions per an item set,
  • a four-question item set will have two-thirds of the number of points as a six-question item set.

Set Up FREE L3 Study Plan FREE L3 Study Plan



3. Level 3 CFA Exam Results: Longer Waiting but Higher Pass Rate

As a level 3 candidate, you’ll have to wait for your results a bit longer than level 1 and level 2 candidates. Usually, it’s been about a fortnight more for level 3, i.e. roughly 9.5 weeks after the exam. For CBT level 3 exams, results may be released probably 7-9 weeks post-exam. As for the Aug 2021 level 3 CFA exam results, the most probable date is:


NOVEMBER LVL 3 EXAM
18 Jan* 2022

* This is our educated guess. In the past, the usual pattern was: exam date + 9.5 weeks + it was Tuesday or Thursday. CFA Institute says that for computer-based exams, the results are likely to be released sooner than in the past.

The good news is that the level 3 pass rate is higher as a rule than level 1 and 2 pass rates and it usually exceeds 50%.

LEVEL 3 PASS RATES IN YEARS 2016-2021:

2016: 54%
2017: 54%
2018: 56%
2019: 56%
2020: 56%
2021 (MAY): 42%


When you pass your level 3 exam, meet other CFA Program requirements to become a CFA charterholder.



Your success is close enough. Do you know how to reach for it?

CFA Institute informs that candidates spend about 300 hours studying for each level of CFA exam. There are three major success-driving factors that help to cope with the challenge: good plan, systematic study and thorough review. Use our CFA Exam Study Planner available also to level 3 candidates and plan, study, review, and assess your progress:

Smart Preparation Starts With Smart Planning

When your plans have this dangerous tendency to fall through - you need more than just timetabled topics!

You need concrete readings assigned to concrete study weeks, weekly progress assessments,
and all the means to stay in charge!

CREATE FREE STUDY PLAN NOW

AVAILABLE ALSO FOR LEVEL 3 CANDIDATES!




When learning for the exam, take into account the level 3 CFA exam structure: study and review the material to be able to answer open-ended constructed response questions and make sure you are able to answer them using clear and adequate English. Note that language mistakes are basically not taken into account unless you make mistakes that influence the logic or precision of your answer.



Allow for more PM and constructed response questions when planning your CFA exam prep.

Practice your skill to construct written response to questions.



Read Also:

Sours: https://soleadea.org/cfa-level-3

Level III CFA® Exam Study Packages

Live Online Class — 2021 Exam Prep

Experience the same instructor interaction and support as an in-person class with the convenience of online study. Prepare with a scheduled live class online and then have access to an archived version of the class to review anytime, anywhere. Our 15-week block of online classes is also led by CFA charterholders and covers the same material at the same pace and frequency as our classroom sessions. All you need is a reliable internet connection and a comfortable chair.

The Live Online Class is included in 2021 Premium Packages, only. 

OnDemand Class — 2022 Exam Prep

Watch our class sessions on your schedule with 50 hours of expert instruction that are all available for OnDemand viewing. Classes will cover key topics, practice questions, and problem-solving techniques.

The OnDemand Class is included in 2022 Premium Packages, only.

Sours: https://www.schweser.com/cfa/level-3/study-packages

Now discussing:

What To Expect On The CFA Level III Exam

The CFA Level III exam is the last in the series of three exams conducted by the CFA Institute. Coupled with at least 48 months of relevant work experience, successful completion of the final level yields a charter membership.

While the first two levels revolved around basic financial knowledge, investment valuation comprehension, and the application of both, the CFA Level III exam focuses on portfolio management and wealth planning.

What To Expect On The CFA Level III Exam

Key Takeaways

  • The CFA Level III exam is the last in the series of three exams conducted by the CFA Institute, and it is held annually in June.
  • Coupled with at least 48 months of relevant work experience, successful completion of the final level yields a charter membership.
  • The CFA Level III exam focuses on wealth planning and portfolio management, and many of the questions are posed in essay form.
  • The exam is divided into two sessions; one in the morning and one in the afternoon.
  • The syllabus is very comprehensive and introduces new concepts. These include behavioral finance, risk management concepts, and tools and techniques for managing risk are also discussed.

Exam Structure

The format of the exam, which is only offered in June, is a mix of item set questions (similar to Level II) and essay type questions. Like the other exams, the Level III exam is also conducted in two parts: the morning and afternoon sessions.

In the morning session, there are 10 to 15 essay-type questions. Each question consists of multiple parts such as A, B, C, etc., which help you organize your answer in a template. These questions may provide you with a situation and ask you to develop your own recommendation or solution. In the afternoon session, there will be 10 item sets. Each item set consists of a case statement followed by six multiple-choice questions.

The exam is graded for 360 points, which corresponds to one point per minute.

Exam Curriculum

As mentioned earlier, the focus of the exam is on portfolio management and wealth planning, but it also covers seven topics that are grouped into two other areas, namely, Ethical and Professional Standards and Asset Classes. The following table provides weighting of these topics and broad areas for the exam:

As is evident from the table, the Ethics and Professional Standards gets as much importance as in the other levels of the exam. The investment tools are not tested separately, except economics, which is a part of the portfolio management and wealth planning section for level III.

The majority of the exam revolves around portfolio management and asset classes in the portfolio context.

Standards

In level III, standards primarily consist of the Code of Ethics and Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS). Standards account for 10% (i.e., 36) of the 360 possible points. The Code of Ethics section will most likely be an item set in the afternoon session. However, GIPS could be tested either as an essay question in the morning session or as an item set in the afternoon session.

Asset Classes

The exam tests your knowledge on all of the major asset classes, including alternative investments, derivatives, equity investments, and fixed-income investments. However, the focus is now on the portfolio management aspects of these investments.

For example, a whole session is dedicated to the management of active and passive fixed-income portfolios, covering investment objectives, benchmarking, return analysis, portfolio immunization strategies, relative value analysis, and so on. The syllabus also covers strategies used in international and emerging markets and how derivatives are used to manage interest rate and credit risks in fixed-income portfolios.

The second asset class is equity securities, which are an essential component of most investment portfolios and crucial for the portfolio's success. The discussion here surrounds equity investment strategies, evaluation of equity fund managers and equity indexes. The syllabus also discusses the corporate governance issues related to conflicts between managers and shareholders that erode value and have a direct impact on equity portfolio managers. Finally, there is a discussion on measuring and managing portfolios in international and emerging markets.

The section on alternative investments primarily discusses the alternative investment classes and how derivative instruments such as swaps, futures, and forwards are used to manage some alternative investments.

Portfolio Management and Wealth Planning

This comprises the largest portion of the exam and will account for at least 180 points out of the 360 possible points. Portfolio management concepts will dominate both the morning and afternoon sessions. The syllabus is very comprehensive and introduces new concepts such as behavioral finance, which forms the basis for financial decision making. Risk management concepts, covering tools and techniques for measuring and managing risk are also discussed. Apart from these, you are likely to be tested on questions related to individual and institutional wealth.

The number of concepts that can be tested are limited but are important. One such important concept is the Investment Policy Statement and its components, which is highly testable. Economics, which was a part of the investment tools in Level I and II, is included under portfolio management in the exam. Other important concepts are managing portfolios of institutional investors, asset allocation, risk management applications, and evaluating portfolio performance.

Within the portfolio management section, the CFA Institute provides no hints about which topics are more important. However, it does make available essay questions from previous years, which can be very useful for practicing and developing your exam strategy.

Exam Details

Time Limit: 6 hours
Cost: Varies
Number of Questions: 10-15 multi-part essay/structured response
Passing Score: Varies Annually
Passing Rates: As of June 2018, 56%
Format: Essay Questions
Prerequisites: Passing grade on CFA Levels I & II exam, and a U.S. Bachelor's degree or equivalent.
Corequisites: In order to receive your designation as a CFA charter holder upon successful completion of level 3, you are required to have at least four years of experience in a related field.
Exam Date(s): June
Exam Results: Usually provided within 90 days. The Level III exam is graded by hand.
Official Exam Website: CFAInstitute.org

The Bottom Line

The Level III exam is considered one of the tougher exams for the CFA, as many of the questions are posed in essay format.

The key to success is to practice as many essay type questions as possible and master topics specifically related to portfolio management, which is at the heart of this exam.

Sours: https://www.investopedia.com/articles/professional-education/12/cfa-level-3-exam-focus.asp


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