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Where does CFA stand compared with MBA

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Old 17-08-2010, 07:52 PM
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Default Where does CFA stand compared with MBA

Hi All , Just curious to know how far can CFA take you compared with a normal MBA done in part time mode in Bschools such as SIM ,MDIS,Kaplan...etc. Which will provide better opportunities considering he/she is new to the industry...Thx in advance....

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Old 17-08-2010, 08:12 PM
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Hi All , Just curious to know how far can CFA take you compared with a normal MBA done in part time mode in Bschools such as SIM ,MDIS,Kaplan...etc. Which will provide better opportunities considering he/she is new to the industry...Thx in advance....
CFA is definitely harder to pass, the historical passing rate for lvl 3 has gone down to 46% this year.

MBA doing in SIM, MDIS or Kaplan is easier to pass, but will not hold such credibility as CFA as it is a global Master of Applied Finance equivalent kind of degree

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Old 17-08-2010, 09:33 PM
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Hm, what's the context here? The CFA may be harder to pass, but that does not mean you are going to work at Goldman Sachs front office if you pass it. Those positions are already reserved for MBAs/Phds from the very top schools CFA be damned. In these cases, the CFA designation tends to be more of a complementary thing i.e. those already "smart" guys would take it just to add 3 more letters at the back of their name, title, etc.

So where can a CFA add value? If your aim is to analyse stocks, etc in a more research oriented position, then by all means, it's going to be very useful. Sales and strategist related positions would be helped too.

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Old 17-08-2010, 11:03 PM
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CFA with decent work experience can be useful if you're gunning for Equity Research positions at MM and BB Banks.

An MBA opens doors and provides the greatest flexibility in terms of exit opportunities. That being said, an MBA is just a re-hashed version of an undergraduate business degree with some fancy leadership courses included. Most people do an MBA for networking purposes. MBAs outside of the top 20 charts (check out Financial Times) don't really add much value IMO. Work experience is more important.
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Old 18-08-2010, 07:44 AM
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Thx for the replies guys.....But my intention of doing either one of the two is to make a career change to management /finance. I'm an engineering grad with about 3yrs work ex. since I'can't afford to get an MBA from a top notch school these are the only options I have....
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Old 18-08-2010, 10:18 AM
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Thx for the replies guys.....But my intention of doing either one of the two is to make a career change to management /finance. I'm an engineering grad with about 3yrs work ex. since I'can't afford to get an MBA from a top notch school these are the only options I have....
join the technology division of a bank, any bank, now. work as an analyst, whatever analyst. and once you get your cfa, seek an internal transfer to a business division. by that time, maybe you will have hit high pay and won't want to move out of technology any more.
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Old 20-08-2010, 11:52 AM
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join the technology division of a bank, any bank, now. work as an analyst, whatever analyst. and once you get your cfa, seek an internal transfer to a business division. by that time, maybe you will have hit high pay and won't want to move out of technology any more.

Most people who join the technology division (aka back office) will generally stay in technology. Transition to front office will be difficult. But if you're good enough, you may make it to VP at another bank or so.
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Old 20-08-2010, 12:56 PM
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I was formerly an accountant from NTU. I took the CFA when I was with a Big4. When I passed it, I applied for many investment related front office positions as I could. I am not sure if it was because of only the CFA that I got several offers but I think it certainly helps.

I think if you want to get into a front office position, between the CFA and MBA from a local university, I would go for the CFA anytime.

Passing the CFA is an internationally recognised program to train financial analysts, MBA is more generic. Unless you are going an MBA with a top-tier university like Insead, forget it.

My advice for people who want to switch, get a CFA and then join a local investment firm if cannot get into the foreign one. With 2-3 years experience, you will be easily poached by the BB firms.
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Old 21-08-2010, 01:22 PM
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I was formerly an accountant from NTU. I took the CFA when I was with a Big4. When I passed it, I applied for many investment related front office positions as I could. I am not sure if it was because of only the CFA that I got several offers but I think it certainly helps.

I think if you want to get into a front office position, between the CFA and MBA from a local university, I would go for the CFA anytime.

Passing the CFA is an internationally recognised program to train financial analysts, MBA is more generic. Unless you are going an MBA with a top-tier university like Insead, forget it.

My advice for people who want to switch, get a CFA and then join a local investment firm if cannot get into the foreign one. With 2-3 years experience, you will be easily poached by the BB firms.

If you are an accountant working for a big 4, CFA will be more useful than an MBA. I would also agree with you that a local MBA is also less useful than a CFA in this respect. However, If you are an engineer or in a non-finance related field, CFA does nothing for you. You are better off with a MBA from a top tier program to get in.
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Old 25-06-2013, 08:55 AM
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Default MBA value

MBA is useful when come from top u.if not , waste the money
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