Photo showing payday for Chartered Financial Analyst salary earner

Posted By: Kaplan Schweser
Published: May 9, 2019

Earning your CFA® charter sets you up well for growth in your career as a finance professional. But what kind of salary can you earn? According to Payscale, in the United States, the CFA charterholder salary is anywhere from $64,234 to $255,000 a year. Why is there such a big range? Because there is a lot you can do with the charter in jobs with varying degrees of responsibility. Bonuses and years of experience make a difference, too. So let’s look at what the average salary is for some of the most common jobs for CFA charterholders.

Portfolio Manager Salary—with the CFA® Charter

According to CFA Institute, 22% of CFA charterholders are employed as portfolio managers. CFA Society Chicago’s annual financial compensation survey reports that the median base annual salary for a fixed income portfolio manager is $132,500; and for an equities portfolio manager, it is $136,000.

Research Analyst Salary—with the CFA® Charter

In a survey compiled by CFA Institute,15% of global CFA charterholders said they were research analysts, responsible for analyzing mathematical processes and qualitative data to make future predictions. Payscale reports that CFA charterholders who are research analysts earn, on average, $73,954 a year.

Chief-Level Executive Salary—with the CFA® Charter

CFA Institute says that approximately 7% of all CFA charterholders in the world have made it to the C-suite. The most common titles for executives with the CFA charter are chief investment officer or chief financial officer. CFA Society Chicago says that chief investment officers with CFA charters have a median annual base salary of $227,500; for CFOs, Payscale says it’s $170,618.

Considering the CFA® charter? Download this free Before You Decide to Sit for the CFA Program Exam eBook.

Consultant Salary—with the CFA® Charter

CFA Institute Companies hire consultants to bring an independent expert perspective to business valuation, provide economic forecasts and analysis, and identify opportunities to grow shareholder value. The median base annual salary of CFA charterholders who work as consultants is $74,000, according to CFA Society Chicago.

Risk Manager Salary—with the CFA® Charter

Financial risk managers help identify and assess potential risks that a company faces or could face in the future. CFA Society Chicago reports that CFA charterholders who work as risk managers have a median yearly base salary of $126,060.

Relationship Manager Salary—with the CFA® Charter

Some CFA charterholders work to help their company maintain business relationships with partners and clients to prevent churn. These relationship managers average $120,000 a year, and they number about 5% of all CFA charterholders.

Financial Advisor Salary—with the CFA® Charter

A small percentage of CFA charterholders are financial advisors, helping clients make decisions about investments, tax laws, and insurance product selection. On average, they earn a median base salary of $110,000.

Interested in Pursuing the CFA® Charter?

Although earning the CFA designation does not guarantee you a job or a top position at a firm, it can make a difference when an employer is deciding between two otherwise equally qualified candidates. In that situation, the CFA charter could be your competitive advantage. Passing the CFA Program exam is your first step in earning the charter, and our CFA Program Exam study package can help.