What IQ Do You Need for CFA? My Take on This So-Called Extremely Difficult Exam

So, in this blog post, we’ll focus on the question of what IQ do you need for CFA, and in order to get you to pass the CFA exam? More on this in a minute, but first I want to give my thoughts and opinions on the CFA exam program. First off, I am probably heading towards going for my CFP, rather than the CFA or the CPA. The sad thing is, that I would be truly in my glory going for either the CFA or the CPA exams, or focusing on building my SEO company, but that my firms recommendation that I should pursue the CFP, which I think is something of a passive waste of time and money for the benefit it gives in comparison to the CPA and CFA, is trumping all of those. I think I would be truly a fantastic candidate for the CFA exams, and maybe I’m in over my head and I am being cocky (although I don’t think that is the case), but I think it would be really fun to compete with other people in my field in trying to ace this exam. The CFA exam, as it is so called, is supposedly the most difficult exam in the field of Finance, trumping even the CPA and the CFP in terms of its difficulty. From my research on the IQ you need to pass the CFA exam, it almost looks like having a 120 and higher IQ is a pre-requisite for the job. And so, in this blog post, lets talk about IQ scores, the CFA exam, and what you’ll need to do in order to pass.

Other popular field exams we’ll cover on this blog include:

Getting a BA in Accounting

Getting a BA in Finance

The CFA ExamsWhat IQ Do You Need for CFA?

The CFP Exams

The CPA Exams

The 9 Actuarial exams

The Series 7


Series 6

Series 4

Series 53

Series 9

Series 10

The 2-15 Life Insurance Exam

The 2-20 Property and Casualty Exam

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What IQ Do You Need for CFA Part 1, My Strategy for Passing This Exam

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So, for part 1 of the CFA exam, I personally think that anyone with a Finance degree and a little bit of determination can hit this one out of the park easily. Without a finance background or interest, yes obviously it is going to be very difficult. With this being said however, I just skimmed one of the free level 1 online resources before writing this blog post, and almost the entire first half of the book is based on NPV, Payback Period, and NWC. For someone with a finance background, even on the basic level of say just a BA in Finance or a BA in Accounting, they would have no problem breezing through these equations. Yes it would still take the 300+ hours of studying, yes you must diligently study, but overall it is not rocket science, nuff said here. IQ to pass level 1 I would give a 115 minimum.

What IQ Do You Need for CFA Part 2, And How I Would Pass This One

Part 2 is a different animal completely, and I am going to say that for someone to go beyond passing the level 1 exam, that a minimum IQ of 120 is needed. To pass CFA Level II, even with a high IQ like say 120 to 130, I would say that you are going to need something like 500 hours or so of consistent studying. You are also going to need a solid background in Finance, and will need to Start working at least a 9 to 5 in the field at this point in order to have the 4 years of work experience in the field to get the CFA charter in the first place. I have kind of wanted to do this for awhile just because they say something like only 20% of people will pass all 3 exams on the first try, and these are financial career professionals. For some reason, this gets the competitive juices flowing for me. Things like Derivative products, financial engineering, and more advanced statistics also become apparent on this section of the exam.

What IQ Do You Need for CFA Part 3, The Mother of All Exams, How I Would Pass

For part 3, some say the second part is harder and some say the third. I am going to go ahead and say that part 3 of the CFA is probably going to be your most difficult time. The exam freshness is not there like it still was with exam 2, the material is I think a bit drier, and you can taste freedom from exam studying to the point where you start to salivate over it. The third part will be your final test, aside from the paperwork, renewal fees, continuing education, and getting your 4 years of investment related experience past a CFA board. Study another 500 hours for this one, and you’ll be well on your way to having the CFA credential in the bag.

Final Thoughts on What IQ Do You Need to Pass the CFA Exam, And Why I Think It Is Closer to the CPA Exam Difficulty Than People Think

So, in so far as someone’s IQ needs in order to pass the CFA exams, I would say that a minimum IQ of around 120 should probably be had. Anything lower than this and it is going to be very difficult, even with many multiple attempts and many hundreds of even thousands of hours of studying, to pass all of these at all, let alone on the first try. What has your experience been with studying for the CFA exam? Leave a comment down below and let us know.




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