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Old 09-05-2010, 11:22 AM   #31
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here are the ans to all the questions (or most)

1. is the CFA Chartered better than the mba?

ans: you are ban by ethics to exclaim you are better than anyone. A mba student can say they are better than you but you cannot say you are better than them.

a CFA Chartered would earn on average 54% higher than his peers with same amount of experience.

The fact to know is that most employer in Singapore do know the value of the CFA qualifications. Yes the bank professional knows but most of the HR in the bank cannot even differtiate btw CFA, CFP, CPA, FRM, PRM, CAIA. Every time I go for interview in the bank I would get questions like so you must be very good at doing accounts?

2. PRM vs FRM

ans: FRM is more reconzied, the PRM is easily since you can get exemption and can take it many times in a year and it has 4 papers instead of one. Taking 4 small paper is easier than taking 1 big paper.

I did the APRM which is PRM paper 4 and more than half of paper 3. I passed. I also took the FRM in nov, which I cannot even imagine getting over the 50% bench mark.

To be honest unless you find FRM too difficult, and yes it is slightly more dififcult than the CFA level 2 exam, do the FRM. PRM is for those whom want a quick entry to risk management or for those whom do risk but is not that involved.

Anyway FRM needs to have 2 years experiences, PRM need not.

PRM is picking up fast because it is easier and yes some local university including singapore have courses for PRM, and when NUS teach PRM course all of the sudden the credibilty increases.

And why no one teach FRM course in singapore, because it is too damm difficult to teach FRM

3. Must my experience be in banking and finance?

You need to be involved in investments. directly or indirectly. Example you work in a company who make cars and you in charge of their pensions fund. yes.

you work in a finance department of a multinational whom use derivatives, swaps etc to hedge its risk. yes you are, but provided you spend more than 50% of your time doing those. if you are an accountant whom just do hedging as part of your job then it is hard to say

Even many jobs in the banking and finance are non qualified
some examples are

deposit
trade finance
loans. yes loans are non qualified, if you are a credit analysis of a loan you wont get qualified , because a loan is not an investment. only bonds, structured finance counts.
doing anything that does not add value to the investment process, example a data entry clerk, in an equites department.

or yes a financial planner is a qualified job. some people actually become one just to get 4 years of experience. Please note this does not mean that financial planner have superior financial skills, most have close to none.

4. is it worth taking CFA, MBA or MIF

ok MIF is most easy to pass I dont think I need to explain why, and it is second cheapest. The MBA is most expensive and 2nd most difficult to pass. The CFA is cheap, but most difficult to pass.

Most people take at least 2 tries to pass each level in the CFA exam so you may take 5 years to complete the CFA exams. Of cause you still need 4 years of experiecne which can be b4, during or after the exams. Most people can complete MIF and MBA in 3 years, even the most stupid of the student did not take more than 3 years. In CFA exams it is not uncommon to fail more than 3 times.

salary wise
highest is CFA Chartered but you are stuck in banking and finance else where you are worthless.
2nd is MBA, the good is you can go anywhere
3rd is MIF, you are stuck and you are little value, but hey it is easy to pass. Some people I know get MIF, work 4 years and do the CFA exams and wala

5. how reconized are these qualification in singapore

CFA Chartered: Most professional heard of it, or know it, but most HR do not. So the point is if you cant even pass the HR interview how the hell are you going to get to the professional interview stage?

CAIA chartered: Alternative investments is not very popular in singapore, it is in HK. But in less than 3 years time it would change, provided of cause the world does not end. So do now while it is easier, once it get popular it would become more difficult

PRM: still not very reconized yet but would soon be. In singapore my bet is soon it would be on par with FRM or even overtake it, but in international stage PRM would not come close to FRM in at least a decade.

FRM: yes many is right, many do not know what is FRM and these include managing directors in the banks in singapore, in Japan, HK, US, EURO FRM is a well know qualification but not in SIngapore. Most in singapore only know master in risk, master in financial engineering.

And yes FRM qualified job are not easy to find, and you need to gain 2 years of experience within 5 years of passing your final FRM paper. So my advise is get experience first then do the exams.

6. do they increase my chance of getting hired?

I passed the CFA lvl one exam in dec 2007, passed CFA lvl two exam in June 2009, passed CAIA lvl one exam in sept 2009, passed APRM exam in 2009 i forgot the month.

and yes till now I have not found a single full time job in a FI, the best job I got in a FI is a 6.5 per hour job at fixed deposits.

So the thing is get a full time job in a bank first then do qualification and never tell anyone you are doing them.

The reason is simple no one would torrelate having someone beside him whom has the potential to outsmart him/her.

once you complete then smack them at your bosses, if you get the CFA chartered, FRM, PRM, CAIA chartered. You are looking at more than 110% pay raise, which would means you are likely to need to jump ship.

So this is another reason why you should not do those qualifciation b4 you join a bank, because if they know it, they would think, hey if I hire this chap he may leave me after he pass or demand from me some stupid salaries, why dont I let someone else hire him and then I poach him over when he pass the exams.

But dont let all that scare you, I am only one of the very few unlucky singaporean in singapore.
great commentary, i have to say.

i suppose you're not working in the finance industry and have been taking these exams in order to gain access into the finance industry?
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Old 09-05-2010, 11:32 AM   #32
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By the way, i am currently taking level 2 of the CFA examinations and it's really no joke to be stuck at this level for 2-3 years!

I have to say this to anyone who intends to pursue the CFA charter:-
Do NOT underestimate the CFA curriculum, because it's ever changing (the topic content and weightages change every year) and sometimes it's really difficult to remember everything you've studied due to the way the exam is conducted.

Imaging taking your Economics paper, your Corporate Finance Paper, your Accounting Paper, your Statistics Paper, all in ONE day, with topics being combined and tested simultaneously.

That said, to anyone taking the June 2010 paper - Good luck and study hard!
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:06 PM   #33
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By the way, i am currently taking level 2 of the CFA examinations and it's really no joke to be stuck at this level for 2-3 years!

I have to say this to anyone who intends to pursue the CFA charter:-
Do NOT underestimate the CFA curriculum, because it's ever changing (the topic content and weightages change every year) and sometimes it's really difficult to remember everything you've studied due to the way the exam is conducted.

Imaging taking your Economics paper, your Corporate Finance Paper, your Accounting Paper, your Statistics Paper, all in ONE day, with topics being combined and tested simultaneously.

That said, to anyone taking the June 2010 paper - Good luck and study hard!


CFA lvl 1 easy to pass?
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Old 10-05-2010, 10:00 PM   #34
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CFA lvl 1 easy to pass?
The short answer:
No.

The long answer:
Depends on who is taking it. If you are someone who is disciplined when it comes to your studies, it should not be a problem. If you have to work long hours and don't have the time to study during the weekdays, but you sacrifice your weekends to study, it shouldn't be a problem either.

I was very fortunate to have passed it in a single attempt, but I know quite a few people who took level 1 twice (and even thrice) before passing.

Having said that, I also know of a good number of people who have passed all THREE levels in their first attempt.

A fresh finance graduate will not have such a hard time as compared to say, someone who is totally new to the industry. This is because there is a lot of overlap in the level 1 curriculum (at least when I took mine), and most people who have taken level 1 should agree with me that level 1 is like a summary of a finance degree (with a little extra).

To pass level 1, you will need to have good memory, good study habits and of course, luck.
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Old 11-05-2010, 11:19 PM   #35
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Am surprised you used the word "excited" for it!
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Old 12-05-2010, 09:05 PM   #36
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LoL. I've sacrificed countless weekends... I am only excited about the things I can do AFTER the exam!

What level are you taking right now?
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Old 12-05-2010, 09:38 PM   #37
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LoL. I've sacrificed countless weekends... I am only excited about the things I can do AFTER the exam!

What level are you taking right now?
Bro how many days they will deliver the study guide after you register?
And when we receive the books, will we have to pay the import tax? if yes how much?thx
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Old 12-05-2010, 09:43 PM   #38
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I am surprised your not excited : (
Yeah BABY! 25 more days. I love finance! ru ready babe? haha ^ __ ^
I don't have credit card sis..can u lend me and I transfer the money to bank account? im still doubt want to take dec 2010 or june 2011, don't want to waste money.heex
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Old 12-05-2010, 10:10 PM   #39
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Bro how many days they will deliver the study guide after you register?
And when we receive the books, will we have to pay the import tax? if yes how much?thx
They send really fast. I remembered I signed up on a Friday and by Wednesday the books were delivered to my office.

As for import tax, you don't (and shouldn't) pay.

Oh, and studying the textbooks is not the smart way to pass the exam. Use the study guides - straight to the point.
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Old 12-05-2010, 10:53 PM   #40
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I'm L1. Im yo junior Yeah I know.. so much sacrifice. June 6 I will bring this baby home and end my suffering. Of course excited! hahaha ^ ___ ^

friendlyguy: Yeah I can lend you my card but cash first into my account first babe LOL^^ you just let me know then. CFA L1 is a pain especially fixed income... FAINT! Hope u will like it. What's yo background yo? : )
It's only the beginning.

Wait till you start level 2 - probably the hardest in all 3 levels!

Anyway, good luck and study smart!!!
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Old 13-05-2010, 08:02 AM   #41
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Good question!

It gets crazy after the break - everywhere is just flooded with CFA candidates during the interval.

If you join CFA Society Singapore as a member, they will provide lunch for you during the exam btw.

I think i'll pack lunch this time ard (I usually don't!)
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Old 13-05-2010, 08:56 PM   #42
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I'm L1. Im yo junior Yeah I know.. so much sacrifice. June 6 I will bring this baby home and end my suffering. Of course excited! hahaha ^ ___ ^

friendlyguy: Yeah I can lend you my card but cash first into my account first babe LOL^^ you just let me know then. CFA L1 is a pain especially fixed income... FAINT! Hope u will like it. What's yo background yo? : )
thx sis..not many gers take CFA,, u are an exceptional!!
yeah ll contact u later, now still consider. so is it enough to cover all topics CFA L1 in just 6 months(ll self study)? Im an accounting and finance grads. you? I dun like the fixed income but I like the financial reporting and analysis, my fav topic is valuation yummy ^^

They send really fast. I remembered I signed up on a Friday and by Wednesday the books were delivered to my office.

As for import tax, you don't (and shouldn't) pay.

Oh, and studying the textbooks is not the smart way to pass the exam. Use the study guides - straight to the point.
thx bro.
wah then that's good news. How about the calculator?which one the best?
study guide u mean from CFAI or stalla or kaplan?

Last edited by friendlyguy; 13-05-2010 at 09:17 PM..
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Old 13-05-2010, 09:15 PM   #43
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CFA + Grad Dip or MSc Finance

i came across this program

CFA + Grad dip in finance investment which articulates into a Master of science in finance from city university of new york. seems like best of both worlds ??


http://www.aventis.edu.sg/asm-financ...ma-glance.html
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Old 13-05-2010, 09:30 PM   #44
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i came across this program

CFA + Grad dip in finance investment which articulates into a Master of science in finance from city university of new york. seems like best of both worlds ??


http://www.aventis.edu.sg/asm-financ...ma-glance.html
Its not a masters degree.. plus it grants only preparation for level 1 cfa... it doesnt let you pass level 1? The only plus side is the ceritificate "Registered Financial Specialist" but is it recognized by HR personnel in Singapore?
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Old 14-05-2010, 05:48 AM   #45
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I think I will pack lunch too, get some sleep after that.. hehehe
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