AuthorTopic: I think I figured out the whole CFA Charter Holder thing
@2014-10-01 14:23:12
God how I hate the technicality of the whole designation thing.

No one is a CFA, there are only Chartered Financial Analyst Charter Holders. A bit redundant and annoying, no? And are you going to correct a client on the nuances of the proper use of the designation? You just end up looking like a prude if you do so.

WHY, WHY, WHY does CFA Institute do this? It has never been explained to where I could understand the logic. I think I have come up with an applicable analogy.

CFA is a trademark. Those with the right to use this trademark renew their licensing agreement annually with CFA Institute in the form of dues, and adherence to the Code of Ethics. This in my view is very similar to the contractual agreements between those with fast food franchises. Private owners of McDonalds chains have to adhere to certain levels of quality, and most likely foot some sort of periodic compensation back to McDonalds for corporate backing.

Now, if you were one of these McD franchise owners you wouldn't go around saying you were a McDonalds now would you? Or Coke Cola, you don't go around saying you are a Coke Cola. One would say, I am a Mc Donald's franchise owner. So that is my thought on this. It is because it is a trademark, and it being a trademark allows CFA Institute the leverage to sue your ass if you use the designation and don't have a licensing agreement between CFA Institute :-)

Now, if you operating in a country that is not bound by international Trademark treaties you possibly could do whatever the hell you wanted and CFA Institute would have no recourse

Damn am I board :-)
@2014-12-25 23:17:09

I was just thinking the same thing this morning.
Then I arrived at the office and read the letter that CFA Institute mailed on the exam result.
The first word of CFA on "CFA Level II examination" contains the R symbol.
The second word on "CFA charterholder" of course did not .
The third word on "Level III CFA examination" doesn't contain the R symbol either.

I've also read lots of fund firms sites that listed CFA as a noun, here's one

I can't imagine any of those fund managers going to their boss and ask them to edit the wordings on the website, but if they are aware of it and not correcting it, is it a violation?

I agree that this -- in addition to the CFA Institute website breakdown on announcement day -- plain ridiculous.

@2014-12-28 16:50:10
I agree, I just checked the Transamerica site and everyone of the charterholders is described as being a Chartered Financial Analsyst (noun). In 2001 when Bowman testified before congress on the Enron scandal he and one of the other panelists said that they were CFAs(noun). He still appears to be president of CFA Institute. What gives? where is the enforcement and protection for investors from charterholders who run around refering to themselves as CFAs.
@2014-12-29 08:37:50
Well, this is a silly technicality and CFAI has no real means to take it to the hilt in leagal proceedings: Bowman's use of the noun being a public record could simply be used by any legal defense and crush an CFAI attempt to make an issue of incorrect useage.

I merely wanted to know what the logic behind it was.
@2015-01-02 12:14:12
The logic behind it is that yes, CFAI has a trademark on the CFA designation, and it wants to keep that trademark. If people start throwing around the term it could become part of the public domain, a la "Kleenex" and "Xerox". Obviously they're not going to prosecute anyone, but it's part of the code of ethics for all charterholders and candidates. Thus as with many things in the ethical world, you SHOULD refer to it that way, even you don't HAVE to.
@2017-02-10 16:55:45
Trademark is so that no other institute in any country uses the CFA to offer courses in the CFA designation. Currently to the extent I know there is ICFAI(India) which is offering a similar course under CFA designation.

CFA Discussion Topic: I think I figured out the whole CFA Charter Holder thing

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Colin Sampaleanu

Colin Sampaleanu