Here is How and Why I am Engaging the CFA Institute in an Effort to Deepen my Knowledge and Understanding of the Financial Markets
The CFA Institute is a global organization committed to promoting lofty standards in regard to ethics, education, and professional excellence within the investment profession. They provide education and training to industry professionals including the most revered curriculum and designation in the investment industry via their CFA(R) Program.
For quite some time I have been very interested in expanding my knowledge and skillset in the investment arena. I have certainly done so through a number of different formal and informal education and training programs including the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER (TM) curriculum, CE courses, conferences, articles, white-papers, books, and even audio-books.
I contacted the CFA Institute some time last year to learn about the various education and designation programs that they made available to financial advisors. After starting to dig in and learn more about their programs I knew that this was a path that I would end up finding myself on and it was just a question of when. Since I was not ready to dig in immediately I figured that I should start becoming familiar and acquainted with the CFA charterholder community and joined the CFA Institute along with a local chapter in Florida, where I was living and working at the time.
Now that I have relocated to Michigan and have had time to think through where I want to go with my business and educational pursuits, I have decided that because of the feelings of both fascination and intimidation that the financial markets leave me with, that this must become an area of rigorous study for me.
So I am starting with their Investment Foundations(R) Program which focuses on the essentials of finance, ethics, and investment roles in the investment industry globally. This is a self-study program and the suggested time investment is ~100 hours prior to taking a two hour, 120 question, final examination. While completing this course of study and passing the exam demonstrates a commitment to study and a certain level of competence in this arena, it does not result in a credential or designation. That is fine with me because my plan is to rapidly consume the information within this course of study, pass the exam, and then move on to the CFA(R) Program – the mother of them all.
So stay tuned for further commentary on what I am learning in the CFA Institute Investment Foundations(R) Program and how it influences my thought and action in regard to personal financial decisions along with the advice that I offer to my clients.