Level 2 CFA Exam Weightage in Ranges
Level 2 CFA exam topic weights are given in ranges. Five level 2 topics take the higher 10-15% exam weight range, and the other five level 2 topics take the lower 5-10% exam weight range.
Importantly, in 2024 the level 2 CFA exam topic weights do not change:
- for the 2023 & 2024 L2 CFA exams, the weights are: QM (5-10%), ECO (5-10%), FSA (10-15%), CI (5-10%), EI (10-15%), FI (10-15%), DER (5-10%), AI (5-10%), PM (10-15%), and ETH (10-15%).
The fact tat the level 2 topic weights are given in ranges isn’t very helpful because it's hard to say how many questions each topic will get in your exam. But we try to help
TABLE: 2023/2024Level 2 CFA Exam Weights
|CFA Exam Topics||Level 2 Exam Weight(MIN-MAX)|
|Quantitative Methods (QM)||5-10%|
|Financial Statement Analysis (FSA)*||10-15%|
|Corporate Issuers (CI)*||5-10%|
|Equity Investments (EI)||10-15%|
|Fixed Income (FI)||10-15%|
|Alternative Investments (AI)||5-10%|
|Portfolio Management (PM)||10-15%|
The table shows the current weights of all level 2 CFA exam topics. The table follows the CFA exam curriculum topic sequence.
How Many Questions for Level 2 CFA Exam in 2023/2024?
As CFA exams move to computer-based testing (CBT), the level 2 CFA exam includes a total of 88 multiple-choice questions, 44 in SESSION 1 and 44 in SESSION 2. The number of questions has been reduced, e.g. in 2020 it was 2 x 60, i.e. 120 multiple-choice questions overall. It's because the total testing time is now down to ca. 4.5 hrs (2 hrs 12 min per exam session) instead of 6 hrs (2 x 3 hrs). You can rehearse the new exam format here
Importantly, level 2 exam questions are arranged into item sets. What it means is that the 44 questions per each exam session are divided into 11 item sets with 4 multiple-choice questions. Each set is topped with a vignette, i.e. a case description forming the basis for the multiple-choice questions grouped for the case.
So, in your 2023 & 2024 level 2 CFA exam you can expect:
- 22 item sets (11 per exam session), each with 4 multiple-choice questions,
- randomly placed topics in both exam sessions,
- each item set topped with information about the TOPIC and the total number of points possible to score, e.g.:
- TOPIC: QUANTITATIVE METHODS
- TOTAL POINT VALUE OF THIS QUESTION SET IS 12 POINTS
Also, 1 item set will not be scored in each exam session, being a trial question.
Predicted Number of Questions in 2023/2024 CFA Exams
Level 2 Topics
What you can see below in the 'Predicted no. of Questions' column is an example of how your level 2 exam questions may be distributed among the topics in your test. We also give you the minimum and the maximum number of questions for each topic. The values are derived from the weightage ranges given above.
Our prediction about the number of level 2 questions is just an educated guess and the actual number of topic questions may differ when you take your exam. However, when all the CBT changes and the MIN and MAX weight ranges are considered, this is what you can expect in your 2023 & 2024 level 2 CFA exam:
|Level 2 Topics||MIN no. of Questions||MAX no. of Questions||Predicted no. of Questions||Predicted no. of Item Sets|
|Quantitative Methods||4||8||8 (2x4)||2 item sets|
|Economics||4||8||4||1 item set|
|Financial Statement Analysis||8||12||12 (3x4)||3 item sets|
|Corporate Issuers||4||8||8 (2x4)||2 item sets|
|Equity Investments||8||12||12 (3x4)||3 item sets|
|Fixed Income||8||12||8 (2x4)||2 item sets|
|Derivatives||4||8||8 (2x4)||2 item sets|
|Alternative Investments||4||8||8 (2x4)||2 item sets|
|Portfolio Management||8||12||8 (2x4)||2 item sets|
|Ethics||8||12||12 (3x4)||3 item sets|
We assume there'll be no item sets with questions from various topics, which however happened in the past.
Before 2019, there used to be 20 item sets altogether (10 per exam session), where each item set included 6 multiple-choice questions. So, there was a total of 120 multiple-choice questions to be solved in 6 hrs, with a break meanwhile. However, as of the June 2019 level 2 CFA exam, CFA Institute decided to have item sets with a varying number of questions. So, in the June 2019 exam, there were 21 item sets: 18 with 6 and 3 with 4 multiple-choice questions. Then, in 2020 level 2 candidates were told to expect 20-30 vignettes altogether supporting 120 multiple-choice questions, which could be divided into item sets of 4 or 6 questions. Now, with the total testing time getting reduced to 4 hrs 24 min, the number of questions also gets reduced. Moreover, the structure of item sets gets set at 4 multiple-choice questions per item set.
Interestingly, before June 2019, level 2 topic weights were different. The highest values of 15-25% were for Equity. Other level 2 topics weights were as follows: FRA (15-20%), FI (10-20%), Ethics (10-15%), CF (5-15%), DI (5-15%), QM (5-10%), PM (5-10%), ECO (5-10%), and AI (5-10%). Now, level 2 exam weights are less varied.
CFA Exam: Difficulty of Level 2 Topics
Although over the last years the exam weights or the number and structure of questions changed, the difficulty of the level 2 CFA exam topics stayed pretty much the same. Of course, topic difficulty is a subjective criterion but you’ll surely agree that EI with its current weight of 10-15% and still more than 500 pages in your CFA Program curriculum seems both important and difficult. In our CFA Exam Study Planner, you get lots of extra time scheduled to study Equity and other important topics, e.g., Ethics, Financial Statement Analysis, or Fixed Income.
We propose what we call the Soleadea Topic Sequence, which is: EI, FI, DER, FSA, CI, QM, PM, ECO, AI, ETH. However, while creating your personalized CFA exam study schedule, you can change the topic sequence according to your liking:
We’ll remind you when your prep starts
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Updated: Sept 1, 2023