Making it big in finance is like a dream come true for every commerce student or business graduate but is it really that easy to make it a reality in this competitive world? Stock markets or global capital markets offer a lot of opportunities for you but with it come the risk. Ample opportunities are available in India specifically with India becoming a hub for outsourcing.

There is no better way than earning a relevant credential to enter a specialized area in finance but there are numerous such certifications afloat and it would not be wise without reviewing them for credibility and the kind of learning opportunities offered before making a choice



The oldest, most widely held, and perhaps most highly regarded financial designation is that of the Chartered Financial Analyst. Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA) Institute offers CFA Charter, acclaimed as the ‘gold standard’ of financial analysis and investment management. It is especially rigorous certification programs which brings added value to CFA Charter and helps finance professionals develop expertise in several key areas of finance including financial analysis, equity research and financial modeling along with other things. As of June 2016, there are approximately 132,000 charter holders around the world. The top employers of CFA Charter holders globally are JP Morgan, UBS, RBC, Merrill Lynch, and HSBC.



Financial Risk Management certification was originally intended for candidates who wanted to pursue the profession of a risk manager in financial institutions. Financial risk management can be qualitative and quantitative. With increasing business competition and rapid changes in the finance industry, businesses require professionals who can manage risk, money and investment efficiently. This has raised the importance of Financial Risk Management and thus given this certification a recognition which it deserves



Certified Financial Planning is among the fastest growing careers in the world. In India, the international CFP certification is awarded by the Financial Planning Standards Board of India (FPSB India). The CFP certification is rated as a Gold Standard and gets its holder acceptance and recognition across a diverse range of financial organizations in 22 countries around the world. CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER professionals meet initial and ongoing education, experience and professional development requirements, pass a rigorous exam that assesses competency, and adhere to a code of ethics, pledging to provide financial planning in the interests of clients and with the highest ethical and professional standards. One has to take extensive exams in the areas of financial planning, taxes, insurance; estate planning and retirement. CFP professionals must also complete continuing education programs each year to maintain their certification status.



CMT is offered by Market Technicians Association (MTA) to help finance professionals develop technical analysis skills while acquiring a detailed understanding of the theoretical part as well as their practical application in varying contexts. It is a globally recognized certification which can help finance professionals look for the finest work opportunities in different parts of the world



The Chartered Investment Counselor designation is essentially an extension of the CFA geared specifically toward client-facing investment managers. In order to qualify as a CIC, one must first become a chartered financial analyst, have at least five years of work experience as an investment adviser or a similar field, and work at a member firm of the Investment Counsel Association of America. A CIC designation is considered a sign of vast experience in investment advisory services and/or asset management. It was first awarded in 1975 by the Investment Counsel Association of America, which became the Investment Adviser Association in 2005.(…to be cont.)