CFP: Certified Financial Planner Course

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CFP

At times we do witness people around us facing massive inconvenience in tackling their financial burdens. Well, it is absolutely cumbersome and quite frustrating at times to set proper financial strategies which could help us meet desirous goals. We have observed a number of businessmen whose failure gives credence to the fact that they have failed meeting all ethical and financial requirements. At the same time, there are successful people whose ethical standards, experience and financial strategies have helped them achieve the milestone. They professionally meet all the standards like a proper investment regulation etc, such professionals are duly recognised as CFP. In this blog, you will learn what CFP is all about and prestigious universities offering this certified course. 

About CFP

Certified Financial Planner or CFP certification is one of the prestigious and acclaimed certified courses and qualifications in the global financial community with more than 1,70,000 certificates enrolled. It is important to know that the Financial Planning Standards Board (FPSB) is the prime and apex licensing body in India for CFP certification which has their tie-ups and agreements with FPSB Ltd, USA and Denver. It has an affiliation with more than 23 countries around the globe. If you are pursuing CFP course in India you are eligible to practice in any of the countries which are affiliated with FPSB. 

Note: CFP designation is majorly conferred by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards in the US

Apart from that, CFP certification marks the excellence of those who meet the requirements in terms of proper financial management strategies, experience, education, ethics as well as the examination. The course allows the students to build a promising career in the financial servicing industry. According to FPSB, financial planning is all about developing strategies to help individuals manage their finances in order to meet their life goals. These include analysing the client’s financial status, creating a financial plan and implementation for benefit.

Benefits of Doing CFP
Benefits of Doing CFP

Who Can Pursue CFP Course?

Those who want to build a career in financial advisory services as well as in the finance sector can definitely opt for a CFP program. 

  • College student or a graduate can take this as a career. 
  • Individuals who have an interest in managing their own expenses and finances can opt CFP as their career, especially investment advisors. 
  • Housewives too can pursue this programme and know financial management strategies in-depth.
  • Working professionals can make most of it by getting the certified course handy. 

Note: Students often question if the CFP program is only for a financial planner? No, that’s not the case, CPA covers a wide range of professions in financial services and business that are recognised in the corporate world.

CFP Exam Pattern 

Before appearing for CFP, you need to know the examination pattern which can help you clear the examination. In the tabulation form, find the marks distribution in each of the exams. 

Question Type  Total Number of Questions Total Marks 
1 Mark 38 38
2 Mark 15 30 
3 Mark 14 42 
4 Mark 10 40 
Total 77 150

Note: All the exam papers from 1 to 4 have MCQ pattern. The exam duration is 2 hours and there is no negative marking.

CFP Course Structure

CFP course modules and topics are promising in nature and aim to provide extensive information to learners in order to acquire in-depth knowledge pertaining to the subject matter. There are in total 5 exams for 6 modules with no separate exam for the first module. Its weightage is added to the remaining 5 modules (20% each). The list of the modules and their corresponding topics include:

Module Topics
Introduction to Financial Planning Financial Planning Process, Client Interactions, Time Value of Money Applications, Personal Financial Statements, Cash flow and Debt Management, Asset Acquisition, Education Planning, Risk Management, Investment Planning and Retirement Planning, Special Circumstances, Plan Integration, Ethics and Business aspects of Financial Planning, etc.
Risk Analysis & Insurance Planning Insurance and Risk Analysis, Planning for Clients’ Exposures to Mortality, Health, Disability, Property, Liability, etc.
Retirement Planning & Employee Benefits Wealth Creation, Retirement Planning and Strategies for Clients, etc.
Investment Planning Investment Planning, Vehicles and Strategies, Regulation of an Investment Advisor, Application to Clients, etc.
Tax Planning & Estate Planning Concepts that are relevant to the course.
Advanced Financial Planning Constructing a comprehensive financial plan for the client.

The CFP syllabus includes the following component covering the fundamental concept of the program and their application in the real world. Have a look at the table given below:

Component Topics
Financial Planning Principles, Process and Skills Financial Planning Process; Financial Planning Practice and Ethics; Professional Skills; Regulatory, Economic and Political Environments affecting Personal Financial Planning; Law and Compliance; Time Value of Money; Client Characteristics; Client Risk Profile; Client Engagement and Communications; Critical Thinking.
Financial Management Principles of Financial Management; Personal and Small Business Balance Sheet (Net Worth Statement); Use and Non-use Assets; Cash Flow Statement; Budget Preparation and Management; Savings Analysis and Strategy; Emergency Fund; Credit and Debt Management; Financial Ratio Analysis; Specific Purpose Planning.
Tax Principles and Optimization Taxation Principles; Tax Planning Objectives; Tax Planning Principles; Tax Planning Law and Policy; Tax Analysis and Calculations; Tax Planning Strategies; Tax Planning for Asset Location.
Investment Planning or Asset Management Investment Principles; Investment Objectives, Constraints, Capacity and Suitability; Investment Time Horizon; Behavioural Finance; Asset Classes; Investment Theory; Performance Measurement; Asset Allocation and Performance; Investment Products – Evaluation, Selection and Monitoring.
Risk Management and Insurance Planning Risk Management Principles; Insurance Planning Objectives; Analysis and Evaluation of Risk Exposures; Risk Strategies; Risk Management Products; Insurance Law and Claims Process; Product, Company and Adviser Selection and Due Diligence.
Retirement Planning Retirement Principles & Objectives; Retirement Needs Analysis and Forecasts; Potential Sources of Retirement Income; Retirement Income and Withdrawal Projections and Strategies; Retirement Planning and Funding Products.
Estate Planning and Wealth Transfer Estate Planning Principles & Objectives; Legal Related Issues; Asset Ownership and its Implications; Estate Planning Documents; Succession Planning; Special Family Situation; The Projected Financial Situation at Death; Estate Planning Strategies; Philanthropy and Charitable Giving; Management in the Event of Incapacity (i.e Living Estate Planning).
Integrated Financial Planning Client Engagement, Communication and Financial Planning Process; Collection and Data; Attitudes, Goals and Objectives; Issues and Problems; Analysis; Strategies; Synthesis and Recommendations; Implementation; Periodic Review.

Eligibility Requirements

In order to opt for and complete the 6-module CFP certification, individuals need to fulfil the below-listed eligibility conditions:

Regular Pathway

  • The basic eligibility criteria are 12th pass from a recognised board. 
  • Candidates have to clear all the 5 papers which covers 6 different modules.

Challenge Status Pathway

  • Candidates who have an advanced level of qualification like CA/Intermediate level, CFA (US), ICWA, CAIIB, CS, LLB, PhD, MPhil, PG, Licentiate/Associate/ Fellowship of Life Insurance, Actuary, FFSI & FLMI from LOMA, UPSC exams are undoubtedly eligible for challenge status.
  • Applicants need to pass only 1 paper of Advanced Financial Planning. 

CFP Fee Details

Regular Pathway
Registration Fees with FPSB India ₹11,540 (only valid for 1 year)
Exam 1 to 4 Fees ₹4,130 (per exam per attempt)
Exam 5 Fees ₹8,260 (per attempt)
CFPCM Certification Fees ₹7,080 (to be renewed annually)
Challenge Status Pathway
Registration Fees with FPSB India ₹29,955 (valid for 1 year, inclusive of initial CFP Certification Fees, Administration & Processing Fees)

Top Institutions in India for CFP

As India is one of the key countries affiliated with FPSB, it is obvious that there are prestigious universities in the country offering a fully-fledged certified course in CFP with lucrative career opportunities. Following is the list of popular institutes to pursue the course:

  • ISBM, Coimbatore
  • ISBM, Guwahati
  • ISBM, Patna
  • Indian School of Business Management & Administration, Raipur
  • Sri Venkateswara College, Delhi
  • International College of Financial Planning, Delhi

Top International Institutions for CFP 

There are prestigious institutions across the globe offering an array of opportunities after the CFP course. Most of the universities abroad are equally offering an online program in CFP. The complete list of the best universities offering online CFP are:

Want to get admission to your dream university abroad? Then, Register Here!

Job Prospects

With the growing population of the country and the annual salaries that it draws, there is an ample need for financial planning. Due to this CFP professionals are seen working with individuals, corporate firms, banks, wealth management companies, insurance organisation and accounting firm on issues related to the following:

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  • Retirement Planning
  • Estate Planning
  • Tax Planning
  • Investment Planning
  • Insurance Planning
  • Financial Management (for various business sizes)
  • Trusts
  • Stockbroking
  • Debt and Risk Analysis

Thus, we can estimate the scope and career in Finance and Finance advisory services. A number of vibrant companies around the world recruiting certified CFP professionals are:

Acumen Wealth Advisors Dewan Housing Finance Corporation Ltd SBI Funds Management Private Limited
Aditya Birla Financial Services Limited Edelweiss Financial Services Limited SBI Life Insurance Company Limited
Axis Bank Limited HDFC Asset Management Company Limited State Bank of India
Bajaj Capital Limited ICICI Bank Limited World Gold Council
Deutsche Bank AG Kotak Mahindra Bank Limited Life Insurance Corporation of India

On lucrative job profiles like that of a Financial Analyst, Management Trainee, Management Trainee, Project Coordinator, Financial Managers, a certified CFP student can do wonders and bring an optimistic change in the finance sector. Moreover, the average salary of CFP is around ₹3.5 lakh per year in India.

Certainly, CFP course is striving to promote educational excellence in terms of financial management, ethics etc. The prestigious course is globally recognised and highly acclaimed at international fora other than India. Want to build a career in finance? Then you are one step closer to the right assistance at Leverage Edu where experts will take you through the steps in choosing the right course and university to pursue higher education abroad. 

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2 comments
  1. CFP exam new pattern has introduced now before appearing for CFP exam one has to complete 3 specialist exam. This regular and challenge path has been replaced by new structure.

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