CFA level 1 changes

[2022] Latest CFA Level 1 Changes You Need To Know

Each year, the Curriculum of the CFA curriculum is changed to reflect as closely as possible the actual changes in financial aspects. Below is a brief summary of CFA Level 1 changes in 2022. If you are planning to take the CFA exam in 2022, this article will keep you up to date with essential information that you should not miss this exam.

March 18, 2022

First of all, it must be said that in the past few decades, the content of the CFA exam and study has changed compared to the previous year. This is to ensure that the CFA curriculum stays on top of important real-world issues. But the level of CFA level 1 changes is generally not too much, helping students not to have too much trouble studying again if they study in the next year. You are preparing for the CFA exam in 2022 but still do not know about the proportion of exam subjects, please refer to the article below for the most effective study plan. The CFA curriculum is divided into 3 levels.

  • Level 1 provides foundational knowledge and concepts in the field of finance
  • Level 2 focuses on financial analysis and the knowledge will be at a deeper and more difficult level
  • Level 3 focuses on the knowledge and skills applied to effective planning and portfolio management

Each level consists of 10 different subjects. Specifically, the proportion of CFA exam subjects by level and the content of the subjects can be found in the below article.

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Why are Changes in Curriculum Important?

CFA level 1 changes

It is useful to know in advance of CFA level 1 curriculum changes, especially in the following situations:

  • Candidates who have not however enrolled for the 2022 exam but need to begin perusing the existing 2020-2021 materials (CFA keeps the same 2021 educational programs as 2020 due to the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic). In this case, it is required for you to ensure that what you’re learning at this time is similar to the recent CFA Curriculum.
  • Candidates utilize materials from the previous time (which can be given or recovered from candidates who have passed the CFA exam) for the following exam.
  • Candidates who tragically fizzled the exam took portions within the past and arranged to retake the CFA exam within another 6-12 months.

Summary of Outstanding Changes in Curriculum CFA between 2022 and 2020/2021

In general, the changes between the 2022 and 2020/2021 editions include only a handful of minor revisions within the Readings. But there is also a change in adding and removing some Reading at each Level. The 3 most prominent changes in Curriculum CFA between 2022 and 2020/2021 can be mentioned as follows:

  • Ethics is brought down to the last part in all 3 levels of CFA
  • Corporate Finance is renamed to Corporate Issuers

The change between the 2 versions is based on tracking and reviewing the main title of the Readings. There are changes in reading if the individual LOS reading is difficult to perceive. You can download the LOS of both years for a more intuitive comparison. It is still important that everyone should study according to the latest Curriculum to ensure knowledge as well as achieve good exam results.

CFA Level 1 changes

CFA level 1 changes

The changes in Curriculum CFA Level 1 of 2022 are not significant, with 3-4 topics being updated to help candidates absorb relevant knowledge at Level 2 more smoothly. There are 60 readings in 2022 (compared to 57 readings in 2020/2021) and 05 readings from 2020/2021 have been dropped.

The changes in Educational modules CFA Level 1 of 2022 are not noticeable, with 3-4 subjects being overhauled to assist candidates in assimilating important information at Level 2 more easily. There are 60 readings in the 2022 curriculum (more than exactly 57 readings in the 2020-2021 period) and 05 readings from the period 2020-2021 have been dropped. Therefore, those of you who have studied level 1 in 2021 but are taking the exam in 2022 need to pay attention to the following updates:

Topic Fixed Income:

This topic is considered the hardest part of CFA Level 1 exam.

Added: Covered bond (more details), Empirical duration

Topic Quantitative:

  • Removed: Chebyshev
  • Added: Chi-square, F-distribution, multiple graph types, 1 new reading (Linear regression)

Topic Corporate Finance:

  • Remove: criteria PP, PI, Dividend model
  • Added: Real option, Capital structure (new reading)

Topic Alternative Investment:

  • Removed: Risk management
  • Added: 3 investment methods, Catch-up clause, waterfall, Private debt, Natural resources

Topic Economics:

  • Removed: IS-LM
  • Added: Types of Cycle, the Credit cycle

Topic Portfolio Management:

  • Added: Behavioral Biases of Individuals (new reading)

Topic Ethics:

  • Removed: GIPS (old reading 5)
  • Added: Ethics Application (new reading)

There’s no alter within the CFA level 1 subject weights of the year 2022 compared to the previous year. Note that in the year 2021, the CFA Institute has changed the subject weights of CFA level 1 to a range rather than the outright rate just like the other CFA level 1 subject weights in the final year. Looking back on the CFA period 2018-2019, there have been major changes where the weighting of Financial Reporting & Analysis and Quantitative Methods has been reduced altogether to supply a more adjusted subject scope. These changes may have been made to debilitate candidates from totally skipping courses such as Derivatives and Alternative Investments as an elective to the CFA Level 1 studying process.

Below is the specific table that illustrates the detailed changes in the CFA 2022 Curriculum. You should follow this table for the purpose of focusing on what you need to prepare:

Topic2021Reading name of 20212022Reading name of 2022
Quantitative Methods6The Time Value of Money1The Time Value of Money
7Statistical Concepts and Market Returns2Organizing, Visualizing, and Describing Data
8Probability Concepts3Probability Concepts
9Common Probability Distributions4Common Probability Distributions
10Sampling and Estimation5Sampling and Estimation
11Hypothesis Testing6Hypothesis Testing
7Introduction to Linear Regression
Economics12Topics in Demand and Supply Analysis8Topics in Demand and Supply Analysis
13The Firm and Market Structures9The Firm and Market Structures
14Aggregate Output, Prices, and Economic Growth10Aggregate Output, Prices, and Economic Growth
15Understanding Business Cycles11Understanding Business Cycles
16Monetary and Fiscal Policy12Monetary and Fiscal Policy
17International Trade and Capital Flows13International Trade and Capital Flows
18Currency Exchange Rates14Currency Exchange Rates
FRA19Introduction to Financial Statement Analysis15Introduction to Financial Statement Analysis
20Financial Reporting Standards16Financial Reporting Standards
21Understanding Income Statements17Understanding Income Statements
22Understanding Balance Sheets18Understanding Balance Sheets
23Understanding Cash Flow Statements1919 Understanding Cash Flow Statements
24Financial Analysis Techniques20Financial Analysis Techniques
25Inventories21Inventories
26Long-Lived Assets22Long-Lived Assets
27Income Taxes23Income Taxes
28Non-current (Long-Term) Liabilities24Non-Current (Long-Term) Liabilities
29Financial Reporting Quality25Financial Reporting Quality
30Applications of Financial Statement Analysis26Applications of Financial Statement Analysis
Corporate Issuers31Introduction to Corporate Governance and Other ESG Considerations27Introduction to Corporate Governance and Other ESG Considerations
32Capital Budgeting28Uses of Capital
33Cost of Capital29Sources of Capital (R35 from 2020)
34Measures of Leverage30Cost of Capital-Foundational Topics (R33 from 2020)
35Working Capital Management31Capital Structure
32Measures of Leverage (R34 from 2020)

Changes of Two Other CFA Levels

CFA level 1 changes

CFA Level 2 Changes

The changes in Curriculum CFA Level 2 in 2022 are all minor changes, only Derivatives and Alternative Investments have noticeable changes. There are 47 readings in 2022 (compared to 48 readings in 2020/2021). There are 03 readings from 2020/2021 that have been removed, 02 new readings added and 13 readings updated.

Just like CFA Level 1, there are no changes to the CFA Level 2 subject weights for 2022 compared to 2021. This is as expected given the downward trends in subject weights across 10 subjects, with a maximum range difference of 5% for each subject. Based on the subject weights of 2022, 10 subjects could even be tested equally with a weight of 10% per subject for CFA Level 2. These changes may have been made to discourage candidates focus entirely on the 5 major topics (formerly) of Level 2 ((FRA, Corporate Finance, Equity Investments, Fixed Income, and Derivatives).

Read more >> How to become a CFA?

CFA Level 3 Changes

In general, the notable content changes in Curriculum CFA Level 3 are the readings of the subjects: Fixed Income, Portfolio Management, and Ethics. Other topics remain largely the same as in 2021. There are 35 readings in 2022 (compared to 38 readings in 2020/2021). There are 05 readings from 2020/2021 that have been removed and 02 new readings added.

As with CFA Levels 1 and 2, there is no change to the subject weights of CFA Level 3 in 2022 compared to 2021. This is as expected given the trends of decreasing variation in weighting in 10 subjects, with a maximum range difference of 5% for each subject.

Above is all information related to the 2022 CFA exam changes in general and the CFA level 1 changes in particular. We hope that this most up-to-date information can help you focus on the most necessary part for the purpose of maximizing your score.