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“The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charter is a globally respected, graduate-level investment credential established in 1962 and awarded by CFA Institute — the largest global association of investment professionals.
There are currently more than 90,000 CFA charter holders working in 135 countries. To earn the CFA charter, candidates must: 1) pass three sequential, six-hour examinations; 2) have at least four years of qualified professional investment experience; 3) join CFA Institute as members; and 4) commit to abide by, and annually reaffirm, their adherence to the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct.
High Ethical Standards
The CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct, enforced through an active professional conduct program, require CFA charter holders to:
Passing the three CFA exams is a difficult feat that requires extensive study (successful candidates report spending an average of 300 hours of study per level). Earning the CFA charter demonstrates mastery of many of the advanced skills needed for investment analysis and decision making in today’s quickly evolving global financial industry. As a result, employers and clients are increasingly seeking CFA charter holders—often making the charter a prerequisite for employment.
Additionally, regulatory bodies in 19 countries recognize the CFA charter as a proxy for meeting certain licensing requirements, and more than 125 colleges and universities around the world have incorporated a majority of the CFA Program curriculum into their own finance courses.
Comprehensive and Current Knowledge
The CFA Program curriculum provides a comprehensive framework of knowledge for investment decision making and is firmly grounded in the knowledge and skills used every day in the investment profession. The three levels of the CFA Program test a proficiency with a wide range of fundamental and advanced investment topics, including ethical and professional standards, fixed-income and equity analysis, alternative and derivative investments, economics, financial reporting standards, portfolio management, and wealth planning.
The CFA Program curriculum is updated every year by experts from around the world to ensure that candidates learn the most relevant and practical new tools, ideas, and investment and wealth management skills to reflect the dynamic and complex nature of the profession.
To learn more about the CFA charter, visit www.cfainstitute.org.
In order to achieve and maintain certification, CFP® professionals must: 1) pass the comprehensive CFP® Certification Examination, 2) pass the CFP Board’s Fitness Standards for Candidates and Registrants, 3) agree to abide by CFP Board’s Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility and Rules of Conduct which put clients’ interests first, 4) comply with the Financial Planning Practice Standards which spell out what clients should be able to reasonably expect from the financial planning engagement, and 5) complete 30 hours of continuing education (including 2 hours of approved Ethics CE) every two years.
CFP® professionals must pass the comprehensive CFP® Certification Examination, pass CFP Board’s Fitness Standards for Candidates and Registrants, agree to abide by CFP Board’s Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility and Rules of Conduct which put clients’ interests first and comply with the Financial Planning Practice Standards which spell out what clients should be able to reasonably expect from the financial planning engagement. – See more at: http://www.cfp.net/become-a-cfp-professional/cfp-certification-requirements#sthash.qwXJz3yF.dpuf.”
Qualification as a CAIA® charter holder requires 1) A bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution or equivalent education or work experience, 2)Successful completion of both Level I and Level II exams, 3) More than one year of qualifying work experience, 4) Maintain annual membership dues and abide by the membership agreement.
The Five Star Wealth Manager award, administered by Crescendo Business Services, LLC (dba Five Star Professional), is based on 10 objective criteria. Eligibility criteria – required: 1. Credentialed as a registered investment adviser or a registered investment adviser representative; 2. Actively licensed as a registered investment adviser or as a principal of a registered investment adviser firm for a minimum of 5 years; 3. Favorable regulatory and complaint history review (As defined by Five Star Professional, the wealth manager has not; A. Been subject to a regulatory action that resulted in a license being suspended or revoked, or payment of a fine; B. Had more than a total of three settled or pending complaints filed against them and/or a total of five settled, pending, dismissed or denied complaints with any regulatory authority or Five Star Professional’s consumer complaint process. Unfavorable feedback may have been discovered through a check of complaints registered with a regulatory authority or complaints registered through Five Star Professional’s consumer complaint process; feedback may not be representative of any one client’s experience; C. Individually contributed to a financial settlement of a customer complaint; D. Filed for personal bankruptcy within the past 11 years; E. Been terminated from a financial services firm within the past 11 years; F. Been convicted of a felony); 4. Fulfilled their firm review based on internal standards; 5. Accepting new clients. Evaluation criteria – considered: 6. One-year client retention rate; 7. Five-year client retention rate; 8. Non-institutional discretionary and/or non-discretionary client assets administered; 9. Number of client households served; 10. Education and professional designations. Wealth managers do not pay a fee to be considered or placed on the final list of Five Star Wealth Managers. Award does not evaluate quality of services provided to clients. Once awarded, wealth managers may purchase additional profile ad space or promotional products. The Five Star award is not indicative of the wealth manager’s future performance. Wealth managers may or may not use discretion in their practice and therefore may not manage their client’s assets. The inclusion of a wealth manager on the Five Star Wealth Manager list should not be construed as an endorsement of the wealth manager by Five Star Professional or this publication. Working with a Five Star Wealth Manager or any wealth manager is no guarantee as to future investment success, nor is there any guarantee that the selected wealth managers will be awarded this accomplishment by Five Star Professional in the future. For more information on the Five Star award and the research/selection methodology, go to fivestarprofessional.com. 1,413 Cincinnati-area wealth managers were considered for the award; 239 (4 percent of candidates) were named 2018 Five Star Wealth Managers. 2017: 985 considered, 288 winners; 2016: 918 considered, 368 winners; 2015: 1,667 considered, 427 winners; 2014: 2,082 considered, 483 winners; 2013: 1,367 considered, 509 winners; 2012: 1,265 considered, 477 winners.