The CFA Level 3 results are in

Taking exams

In June, nearly 150,000 aspiring finance buffs took the notoriously tough Chartered Financial Analyst exam.

The results are now in for the third and final level of the exam: 54% of test-takers passed, according to a tweet by the CFA Institute.

This year’s Level III pass rate is the same as last year.

Only about one in five people who start the CFA program make it through all three levels and successfully complete the other requirements to become a charter-holder.

Here are the full results for the June 2017 exam:

  • Level I: 43% passed
  • Level II: 47% passed
  • Level III: 54% passed

Level I tends to have the lowest pass rate of the three exams because that’s when the amateurs are weeded out from the serious players. Each level tests different material, according to the CFA Institute’s website:

  • “Level I tests your knowledge of the ethical and professional standards.”
  • “Level II tests how you apply those standards to situations analysts face.”
  • “Level III tests how you apply the standards in a portfolio management and compliance context.”

According to the CFA Institute, 2016’s test takers spent about 322 hours studying for the exam.

Becoming a CFA charter-holder is a huge leg up for anyone hoping to build a career in investment management.

It’s also a much cheaper credential than an MBA.