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10 facts about the CFA® charter, career, and salary

The low passing rates and 300 hours of recommended study often put people off getting a CFA® charter– but given the rewards, maybe you should think again!

We summarize data from CFA Institute, payscale, cfaprep, and efinancialcareers to give you a quick glance at the financial prospects of being a CFA® charterholder in Singapore.

Here are 10 facts about the average CFA® charterholder's career path and salary:

1. In 2014, only 7% of CFA charterholders worldwide were from Asia Pacific – making them a prestigious group in demand by local companies.

2. Most charterholders get hired as Portfolio Managers after getting certified. Next most common positions are Research Analysts and Chief-level Executives.

3. The sectors with the highest percentage of charterholders are Asset Management, Investment Banking, Equities, Research and Wealth Management.

Sectors with the highest proportion of CFA® chartholder employees

4. These are the average salaries per year (not including bonuses) for charterholders in Singapore on payscale:

  1. Investment Advisor: S$170,000

  2. Finance Director: S$166,000

  3. Portfolio Manager: S$132,000

  4. Risk Manager: S$104,000

  5. Investment Analyst: S$88,000

  6. Credit Analyst: S$64,000

  7. Financial Analyst: S$61,000

*Figures rounded up to nearest 1,000.

5. The highest paid charterholder job in Singapore at the Vice President level (about 6 years of experience) is in Investment Banking, with an average base salary of S$237,000.

6. At the top tier of companies, charterholders with bachelor’s degrees generally earn S$86,000 more than non- charterholders, and charterholders with master’s degrees generally earn S$73,000 more than non-charterholders.

7. The average Singaporean charterholder (with bachelors degree) earns about S$60,000 a year.

8. Between 1 - 4 years after obtaining the charter, the average Singaporean charterholder earns almost S$150,000 a year.

9. The figure in #8 is higher than what charterholders in Australia, India, UAE, UK, Canada and even the US earn. Singaporean charterholders also generally earn about S$20,000 more than those with MBAs.

10. Singaporean charterholders have bonuses that are among the highest in the world (with the exception of Hong Kong and Australia).

Those that make it though the exams and get recognised as charterholders really do reap the rewards for their hard work!

Are you inspired to become a charterholder? Let us know in the comments! Or find out more about what the CFA® Program exams are like at our info session here.

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