Congratulations to our CFA Level 1 Exam passers!

In pursuit of continuous learning and professional growth, eight associates from Financial Services Risk Management (FSRM) enrolled in the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) program and passed the Level 1 Exam last December 2013. They are:

Seated from left: Maria Liezel A. Madrigal, Candice Annelle T. Kua, Ferlyn Joy C. Cargullo, Jemima Gervic C. Vivo; standing from left: Ordisi P. Osonio, Danielle Christopher M. De Jesus, Emilfredo M. Ong, Victor Lorenz O. Ng.

The CFA program is a globally recognized self-study program for investment professionals. Passing the three-level CFA exam series on 10 subject areas, as well as meeting professional and ethical requirements, will earn candidates the designation of CFA charterholder. At least six months of preparation for each exam level is recommended and successful candidates take an average of four years to complete the program.

This is why earning the CFA charter demonstrates an investment professional’s persistence, flexibility and hard work. Our passers followed a strict schedule in studying each topic individually, using a combination of books, review guides and practice exams. Aside from being workmates, they were also friends who encouraged each other to stick to their study plans, discussed difficult topics in a Viber group and set up a mock exam together. Because the exam coincided with the group’s busy season in November and December, they experienced difficulties in studying while working. But they had the support of their managers and partners, who allowed them to take leave as the exam drew nearer.

Our passers believe that being in FSRM gave them a leg up on many of the covered topics since they were exposed to financial instruments, formally trained in the FSRM Academy and they had opportunities to learn from managers in client knowledge transfers. In return, reviewing for the exam helped them improve the quality of their work. Since entering the program, they contributed in improving and creating valuation for their engagements and were able to present results in a way that caters to their clients’ chief financial officers, directors and managers.

Those also aiming to be CFA charterholders are encouraged to join FSRM or Market Group 5, which our passers consider to be really good training grounds for accountants to bridge their way from accountancy into finance. They advise future exam-takers to start preparing early in order to sufficiently cover the long material and develop the necessary skills. They also share that there a lot of trick questions in the exam so one must actually understand the material and their practical applications instead of simply memorizing it. Simulating the exam like they did would also be helpful. Above all else, our passers believe that the best advice they could give is to take the exam with friends because their support really pushes one to work hard.

Kudos to everyone on a job well done!