I took the Series 56 today

Discussion in 'Prop Firms' started by microjohn, Jul 5, 2011.

  1. It was really hard. I took it without studying, because really the only thing the cboe provided was an outline highlighting just about every regulation on the books that need be studied and learned. I really was only taking it so I could see what it was like and had my fingers crossed that it was like a continuing ed test that can't be failed...it most certainly can be failed.

    I'll admit that I passed it (got a 76), but I'd wager that 95% of others will fail. The only way I passed is because it dealt heavily with stuff I deal with every day: lots of rules and regs of market making for equities and options, lots of internal compliance rules, lots of manipulation stuff, etc...their outline isn't inaccurate, but it's just not good.

    This test is equivalent to the 55, which I also have. However, I studied for the 55 with material and sample tests and passed it with only about a year's experience in the industry. I now have nearly 13 years experience directly in trading, and NEVER would have broken a 50 on this thing without daily experience in most of the material, and I definitely guessed on at least 30 questions.

    This test is going to cause a lot of people to lose their livelihoods unless the August 12th deadline is moved back, study material is made available, and sample tests are provided...it's unbelievable that they think anyone can pass this thing without studying.

    Who's going to rack up the SEC/TAF fees trading SPY, GOOG, AAPL, SINA, etc. if they're all banned from the industry because they couldn't pass a very difficult test that was forced with no warning or preparation material?
  2. i agree with you. i have the same view & have mentioned it several times to others & on posts here. that this test would probably be difficult. They took about 1 year to develope this test & i felt it was going to be challenging. Now we know for sure. Good to hear some honest feedback from someone that actually took the test & passed. Hopefully their will be some study material available but don't think it will happen fast enough to get in anyone's hands to prepare for the test. bad timing for all of us dealing with this mess. this is going to get ugly for most prop traders & firms. most traders have a better shot in passing the 7 test then to roll the dice with this 56 test when you can't prepare. You fail the test Once and you lose a lot of money. great post.. thanks for sharing.
  3. Were there options related questions on the s56?
    Can you give us a little better idea what was on the test?

  4. No problem, Scorpion. My goal with this post wasn't to scare anyone or brag, but I've been looking for info for this stupid thing since I heard last week about the deadline and wanted to provide a glimpse of color for the googlers out there. I bet this thread gets pretty busy in the next few weeks...

    There were lots of options questions...it was probably 25-35% options, but not simple stuff. Lots of questions about options market maker rules...order handling, etc. There were maybe two questions where you had to do some simple calculations and I didn't use or want a calculator.

    My best advice to anyone taking it before better study materials are produced by anyone (FINRA? CBOE? SEC? Kaplan???) is to demand that your firm open up all of the laws referred to in that joke of a 56 page outline and provide them to you, then start reading.

    I looked at the table of contents of it this afternoon post-test and every single sub-section on there got some play.

    Section 3 probably had the biggest portion of questions, and the rest were all equally distributed.
  5. Where did you take it?
    How long did it take you? You need the full 2 1/2 hours?
  6. This is going to be a challenge for most of us. even thought it's Only 100 questions its going to be a difficult test to pass. some people think that it would be easy for some reason? Not the case as you pointed out. With all your experience & knowledge you probably only passed the test by 6 questions. that is tough.. 100 questions with 1 pt by per answer. You need to get 70 questions correct out of 100 to pass. Not much room for error. Their is going to be a high failure rate with traders that take this out of the gate.
  7. Congrats! I'm surprised that Section 3 was so heavily tested when the outline said that 50% of the test would be from Section 4 and just 20% from Section 3. They might have been testing several experimental Section 3 questions though. Also it's probably difficult to place the questions in a single section because there is a lot of overlap. There were several mistakes in the outline too. Thanks for the information though and good to know the test is passable. :)
  8. EPrado


    13 yrs in the biz and you never took the series 7 ? But have a 55? Also you do know that they are accepting waivers based on experience in the industry...why didn't you just try for a waiver? I don't know of anyone with a 55 and no 7...and from what I hear, if you have/had a 7, you can get a waiver. This test seems to be geared to the newer traders who came into the biz with no prior licenses and just wanted a place to go without taking a test.

    As far as some of the others saying this is the death of a lot of traders? Thats insane. Worst case scenario is they will actually have to DO WORK...study and pass the test. None of these tests 7,55,......are that tough IF you study. And if they are afraid of the test, they can just take their money and go retail. A few of you guys on here are being ridiculous acting like this is the end of the world.

    Kind of surprised to see that someone actually took this test already. It didn't seem like the test was even ready to be given.
  9. The challenging thing is mostly just the time it takes to prepare the study materials. There are about 700-800 pages of relevant laws and regulations to outline and study in addition to the trading concepts so it can take a lot of time. It can help if you take a couple of weeks off and do nothing but study for the exam though. If you don't pass the first time, you'll have another 30 days to really concentrate on doing nothing but studying so not too big of a deal (unless the market winds up making amazing moves in August).
  10. Eprado.. their are a few guys that i know that have several licenses with 10 years of experience. that will be taking the 56 test. It's not for just new traders A required test for prop traders with cboe & possibly other exchanges. It's a new test that is required for traders to trade with a prop firm . Sure waivers are going to be given to everyone ? that is wishful thinking. Being licensed is a regulatory rule has nothing to do with experience or the profitibility of a trader. Their are no study materials . What are you going to study with ? It's taking a educated guess to pass this test. . If it was only that easy. more regulation usually hurts everyone. Anyone that wants to trade prop is going to need a license period.
    #10     Jul 6, 2011