July 06, 2023: The pass rate for the second level of the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exam has surpassed its historical average, demonstrating a rebound from the decline caused by disruptions to test-taking during the pandemic.
In May, 52% of candidates successfully passed the Level II test, a notable increase compared to the 44% success rate in November and the 40% in August, as reported by the CFA Institute on Thursday. This achievement represents the highest percentage since the 2020 test, before the Covid-19 crisis, which significantly impacted pass rates and exceeds the 10-year average of approximately 45%.
Chris Wiese, the Managing Director for Education at the CFA Institute, highlighted the normalization of the Level II pass rate as candidates’ study schedules returned to their regular course. Wiese stated, “We observe that the Level II pass rate continues to recover from the challenges posed by the pandemic as candidates regain their momentum within the CFA program. We have witnessed spikes in pass rates throughout time, and it is gratifying to witness more candidates making significant progress.”
This recent accomplishment represents a stark improvement from the historically low pass rates observed across all levels of the CFA exam in 2021. Before 2020, the last year over half of the Level II candidates succeeded was 2005, with a pass rate of 56%, according to the CFA Institute.
The Level II exam conducted in May saw approximately 16,000 candidates participate across 471 testing centers worldwide. Historically, the exam was administered on paper; however, due to the pandemic, a transition to computer-based testing was implemented.
In conclusion, the pass rate for the CFA Level II exam has surged above its historical average, indicating a recovery from the challenges brought about by the pandemic. The substantial increase in pass rates showcases candidates’ progress within the CFA program, emphasizing the resilience and dedication of aspiring financial analysts.