CFA Level II Results: Passed!

This morning, I received my results for the CFA Level II exam. I’m very happy to say that I passed. This was my third time taking the exam.

I’ve been blogging about my attempts to pass Level II for two years now. The first year, I wrote a detailed description of my study plan and my test day experience. The second year, I only wrote a few short entries and didn’t write about my results, because I was incredibly discouraged about not passing.

My results were pretty stellar this year. I had >50% correct on every section, and most sections I had >70% correct. I think I finally found the right combination of studying, note taking, and practice exams to make all the content stick.

CFA level II results

Although these results look great, I have to point out there’s a certain amount of randomness involved. There’s an enormous about of content required for Level II, but only a small portion of it appears on the actual exam. All three years that I took the exam, there were subjects that I spent 20-30 hours studying that did not appear on the exam, and there were subjects that I only spent 5 hours studying that did appear on the exam.

I’m very happy that my hard work paid off. I’ve probably spent over 600 hours studying for this particular exam. I intend to take Level III next year and put in between 200-300 hours of studying.

Author: Matt Kirisits

 

Comments

  • benny
    Reply

    thank you for ur sharing! Ur experience is really inspiring for me, i just fail my cfa lv2 exam this year(band 6), and i am planning wut should i do to pass

    • Matt K.

      You should retake it. Plan on spending at least another 200 hours studying. I recommend you do all of the end of chapter problems from the CFA Institute.

      If you want to see my detailed study strategy, I’ve been writing about it for a couple years. All of my posts about the CFA exam are here.

  • Adam
    Reply

    Congratulations! I’ve been checking out your blog now for a couple of years, and I’m glad to see you passed LII. I failed this summer after studying 400+ hours – I used Schweser, did all CFAI EOCs, and 7 mocks. I’m going to take it again next summer. Seems as though persistence pays off when it comes to LII…

  • Matt K.
    Reply

    It definitely does. I would encourage you to retake it, especially if you were close to passing this year.

  • Adam
    Reply

    It’s that time of year again — I’m starting to take CFA Level II practice exams. I took my first exam and scored under 45%. My problem is not understanding the material; it’s remembering everything I need to know to do well. I still have 6 more exams to take, so I know I have time to improve, but my first score was really a downer. What should I be scoring before going in?

    I really look to your blog for inspiration that this can be done. FYI, I work full time and study between 9 and midnight every night. Your input would be so appreciated. Best regards.

    • Matt K.

      Adam,

      It’s pretty common to score under 45% on your first practice exam. I’m currently studying for Level III and my score for the first practice exam was probably 40%.

      I think it really comes down to practice, repetition, and hard work. For any question you miss, you really have to understand the solution 100%. Write down the process for getting the correct answer and then write it down again. If there’s an important formula, copy it and recopy it. Keep doing this over and over.

      I found Level II so frustrating because there some topics (which I can’t say what they were because of CFA Institute guidelines) that I studied 20 hours on, and then they didn’t appear on the exam! There’s just so much material and you really have to know it all. But if you have to prioritize, obviously focus on the more heavily weighted sections that will have 3 or 4 item sets.

  • Adam
    Reply

    Matt,

    Thanks a million for your response. I’m now scoring between 55%-58% on average, and I still have 4 more exams to take, including the CFAI’s exam. Consensus is the the passing score is around 63%-64%, so I think I have a shot at it if I can get my scores above 60% and master my weak areas. Good luck with your LIII prep and exam. It’s going to be a great feeling once we’ve completed the program.

  • Matt K.
    Reply

    Absolutely. You might also look at my results from taking Level II three times. I posted the screenshot each year and was Band 6, Band 8, then pass. That might help you decide what to focus on.

    • Adam

      Where’s the Band 8 matrix? I only see the Band 6 and Pass.