CFA exam candidate numbers reach record high

The number of candidates sitting the CFA programme exams has grown steadily year-on-year, with 54% passing Level III exam this year.

New candidates signing up to the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) programme exams globally this year grew 15%, with candidate numbers reaching record highs in China.

The record candidate numbers “reflects growing interest in building professionalism in the investment management industry,” the CFA Institute said.

Since records began in 1963, over 2.3 million people have sat the Level I exam, with just under 363,149 sitting the final Level III exam.

Of the 28,884 candidates that sat the Level III CFA exam in June this year, 54% passed.

Chief executive of the CFA Institute Paul Smith, said the successful candidates have “demonstrated their commitment to the highest standard of professional knowledge and ethics.”

The institute added that successful candidates will become CFA charterholders starting in early October, and “begin their journey as investment management professionals.”

In 2015, precisely 27,468 candidates sat the Level III exam – 53% of which passed - and the number of candidates has grown steadily over the last 50 years.

CFA Institute explained those that successfully pass the exams spend on average 1,000 hours ‘mastering’ 8,500 pages of curriculum including subjects like ethics, reporting, analysis and quantitative methods across asset classes.