Does the CFA Open Doors?

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by tanp21, Mar 7, 2005.

  1. tanp21


    I am taking the CFA level 1 in June and have no industry experience. I currently have a somewhat lucrative career in a different industry however I would like to pursue positions in the Investment Management field. Will passing the level 1 open any doors? If not will becoming a CFA Charter holder open any doors? Asset/Investment management is my hobby so I find a lot of value in the level 1 material however I would like to get some feedback on future possibilities. Any suggestions, comments or advice is appreciated.
  2. Consider it a minimum requirement. CFA might keep your resume from getting thrown out of the pile. Of course, sometimes you need the MBA in conjunction, or you get thrown out automatically. So, if you want to do investment management, yes, pursue it.
  3. It could help you with investment management or equity research. Also, if you plan to become a portfolio manager, it could also help.

    Best of luck in June.
  4. tanp21


    I would love to hear from some hiring managers at Hedge Funds or Bulge Bracket firms to see how the level1 of the CFA is perceived. Besides an MBA what other certifications or training do you recommend?
  5. by taking the level 1 you will have evidence of your interest in switching careers into investment management. the investment management industry looks very favorably on the CFA designation and some even think it as equivalent to an MBA, because you have to take three levels that require intensive studying.

    You cannot be a charter holder after passing the level III yet because you will have to be sponsored by an existing charterholder and also gain 3 years of work experience in an investment management related field. However, the CFA level 1 should be enough to show your interest and convince employers to interview you. How you interview is then the key.
  6. it is also studied that all else equal, people who are CFA charterholders earn as much as 20% more than people who don't have the the charter. This of course only applies to the investment mgmt industry, but is something as an incentive. :D
  7. I would agree that it is a minimum requirement, especially if you have few other credentials in the business. What I would suggest, is beginning the CFA process (minimum 3 years that feel like 10, but worth it). As you approach level 3, if you still want to work in investment management, try to get hired or even offer to be an intern for a money manager as a "jr. analyst" in the industry that you are currently involved/successful in, on the assumption that your success and experience in that field may give you a decent level of expertise. This may be your easiest/only way to get your foot in the door, depending on your other credentials and age. If you can do this, bust your ass to add value to the firm that gives you a shot in any way you can and basically work your way up as far as your sweat and brains can take you.
  8. tanp21


    I appreciate your advice. Here is a little more about my situation. I am 29 and work as a Senior Manager of Staffing & Recruiting at a Management consulting firm in NYC. With regard for industry expertise it would be in HR operations, which I don’t see as lending any value to a portfolio manager. My annual compensation is in the 145 – 160 range depending on bonus. A year back I took and passed the series 3 exam hoping it would lend some credibility to my knowledge of the alternative investment product base and I will be taking the CFA level 1 in June.

    Any more guidance would be appreciated.
  9. GSCO


    wanna buy some books. most of them are unopened.


    i'm serious by the way. for you -->special price
  10. tanp21


    Thanks for the offer but I already have all the books that I need.
    #10     Mar 9, 2005