CIMA Updates Knowledge Skills, Requirements for Certification

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Financial advisers who hold the designation of Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA) will face changes in what areas they need to know and requirements for certification.

It’s been four years since the last CIMA job analysis, and the latest survey by the research firm Human Resources Research Organization (HumRRO) in partnership with the Investments and Wealth Institute (formerly IMCA) reveals “enhancements” that are needed in know-how and CIMA certification requirements to meet future needs.

“The job analysis results suggest the task and knowledge lists are comprehensive and current, reflecting a contemporary, relevant body of knowledge for advanced investment advisors and consultants,” the report states.

Here are changes that practitioners will need to know:

  • The CIMA Core Body of Knowledge has been consolidated into five knowledge domains, and ethics and fiduciary principles and guidelines are included. The domains include fundamentals (statistics and methods, applied finance and economics, global capital markets); investments (vehicles, equity, fixed income, alternative investments, options/futures, real assets); portfolio theory and behavioral finance (portfolio theories and models, behavioral finance, investment philosophies and styles, tools and strategies); risk and return (attributes of risk, risk measurements, performance measurement and attribution); and portfolio construction and consulting process (ethics and fiduciary responsibilities, client discovery, investment policy, portfolio construction, manager search and selection, portfolio review and revisions).
  • There’s increased emphasis on passive investment types and strategies, including a new section about investment philosophies and styles.
  • A new section on responsible investing was added, which includes environment, social and governance, impact investing and socially responsible investing.
  • Behavioral finance exam weightings were enhanced.
  • “Real assets” is now a new content section instead of its former inclusion in the investment section.

Here are changes in certification requirements:

  • Investment advisers and consultants with at least three years of experience must know 469 topics organized within five domains and 22 sections.
  • Beginning in June, CIMA education providers must address relevant, country-specific tax and regulations in the registered executive education program.
  • Beginning in August, the CIMA certification exam will be administered in a five-hour, 140-question multiple-choice format at an established testing center.
  • Beginning in January 2019, CIMA holders must show that they’ve completed at least one hour of continuing education in tax or regulation.

About Terry Sheridan

Terry Sheridan

Terry Sheridan is an award-winning journalist who has covered real estate, mortgage finance, health care, insurance, personal finance, and accounting and taxation issues for newspapers, magazines, and websites. A Chicago native and former South Florida resident, she now lives in New England.

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