CFA vs MBA - FinTree




Certainly the first thing that you should focus on is your Objective, your Goal. What you want to be in your professional life? What you are able to sacrifice? What resources you have and how would you want to utilise your time and money to achieve your goal and aspirations.

CFA provides the pursuing students with specialized skills which they will need, to gain success in the Investment world viz. Asset allocation, Asset management, Research Analyst, Portfolio Manager and Financial Statement analysis. If you are really enthusiastic about finance and are NOT looking for a generic qualification, CFA is the right designation for you. However, its very very demanding. Depending on your background and how comfortable are you with numbers, it requires dedication and strong will power from the aspirants.

MBA equips one with specialized business skills. The skills which you can apply in any of the industries, in any of the disciplines.

Though you will have to go for specialization as part of MBA and even if you choose finance as the core, the topics which are covered as part of MBA, would not be as exhaustive, as CFA.

The average time to gain CFA charter is anywhere from 2 – 4 years, and you have a huge, indepth curriculum to explore and understand. Coupled with real life scenarios and analysis which are covered in CFA curriculum, you develop a deep understanding of investment world. Add to that, CFA is a global certification and gold standard in the financial world.

The biggest task when you plan to pursue MBA is the choice of institute and correspoding cost. In addition, you need to devote your 2 years to earn an MBA degree.  The advantage you get is the vast network of professionals with which you interact during these 2 years.

CFA study gives you a flexibility of pursuing along with job and you can even apply the CFA knowledge in your job which will definitely give you a more thorough understanding of concepts being covered in CFA.


To earn CFA charter, you spend anywhere between 2500usd – 3500usd which covers the cost of CFA Institute fee as well as any training you may need.

An MBA degree from good business school will cost you around 15000usd to 40000usd. Certainly time value of money comes into play as you are not working when pursuing MBA.