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People who obtain the series 24 license are looking to take their financial services career to the next level. Perhaps you are looking to become a department supervisor for your broker dealer. Or maybe you are looking to become the manager of an OSJ and want to earn additional compensation in the form of overrides on the production of the agents you supervise. As such you will be required to pass the series 24 exam by your employer. Often times as a condition of employment, individuals are required to obtain the series 24 license to function in their job. You may be joining your firm as a branch manager, department head or in some other capacity that dictates that you pass the series 24 exam. Your firm’s compliance department, home office or HR will notify individuals directly or through their managers as to the time frame for taking the exam
A series 24 license will allow you will be able to move up the corporate ladder at your firm and to supervise business in all general securities products including stocks, bonds, options, rights , warrants, open and closed end investment company shares and ETFs. Once you have obtained a series 24 license, you may supervise registered persons, trading departments, and investment banking. You will also be licensed to review and approve retail communication, new accounts and orders. Passing the series 24 exam and becoming series 24 licensed is a significant accomplishment.
The series 24 exam without question is the most challenging exam most people ever take in the financial services world. Yes there are harder exams, but those are taken by a much smaller universe of people. Passing the series 24 exams is a significant challenge and obtaining a series 24 license takes focus and dedication to the exam preparation process. Students should not take this test lightly. You must thoroughly prepare to take the exam and should make it a top priority. The series 24 exam covers areas many people are never exposed to in their careers. Many people who take the series 24 exam are coming from the retail brokerage side of the business or are working in a compliance department. As such many have never had any experience dealing with areas of trading and market making or investment banking. These two areas are heavily tested on the exam. For those who are seeking to become series 24 licensed who hail from the trading or investment banking departments, these individuals find the supervision of customer accounts and sales practices most challenging. You should prepare for the exam by reading a textbook completely with a highlighter. You must read the book, there are no shortcuts and students need to understand this. You must clear your schedule, shut off your phone and focus. In addition to obtaining the knowledge required by the exam , you must master the application of the information by taking thousands of practice questions. We recommend at least 80 – 100 hours of preparation to ensure you pass your series 24 exam and become licensed as a general securities principal.
If you are not sure of the answer to this question now, you will be once you prepare for the exam. The answer is that while it feels like your series 24 license is indeed transferable, in actuality it is not. If you wish to change employers by switching broker dealers, your series 24 registration / license must be terminated by your current FINRA member firm. Your former employer / the firm that you are leaving will fill out and submit a Form U5 to FINRA. This will terminate your employment and your registration with that firm. When you arrive at your new firm you must fill out and submit a new Form U4. This will begin your registration with your new firm and your series 24 license will become active at your new firm upon receiving notice from FINRA and the states where you conduct business. As a series 24 licensed professional it may indeed be part of your job description to sign and submit U4s and U5s to FINRA.
Obtaining a series 24 license will require many people to make an investment in their professional development. Your series 24 license will empower you to supervise a wide variety of activities being conducted as part of a general securities business. Many people who obtain a series 24 license enjoy lucrative and successful careers. The good news is, for those who have to pay for it out of pocket, the costs are relatively low when compared to other types of training, certification and college expenses. Some employers pick up or reimburse the costs of training and the testing and registration fees Even for these people many obtain additional resources such as additional test questions, books or videos to ensure they pass their exam. For those who have to pay all of the expenses out of pocket, it usually only costs a few hundred dollars for the testing and registration fees and the training materials. . Since many people who take the series 24 are already fairly well established, the costs are very easy to afford You will find that obtaining a series 24 license opens many doors for you throughout your career.
Once you have obtained your series 24 license you will be required to meet certain continuing educational requirements.. You will find that this works much in the same way you were required to take continuing education for your series 7 license. Every year your firm will send out a questionnaire known as a “needs analysis” to each of its registered personnel. Based on the response to the that questionnaire each representative will be assigned continuing education courses to complete. As a series 24 licensed individual, your course assignments will now change. Your firm may have you attend a seminar, webinar or take an online course to satisfy the firm element continuing education requirement. You will also be required to complete the regulatory continuing education requirement which is administered by FINRA. You will now be required to be required to complete the principal level continuing education requirement by successfully completing the S201 course based on your date of association with a FINRA member. Your date of association for most people will be the date you passed your exam. You will be required to complete the S201 on the second anniversary of passing your exam and every three years thereafter. The S201 course may be completed at an approved facility or on FINRA’s continuing education portal. You will only be required to complete the S201 continuing education course. You will no longer be required to complete the S101 registered representative course.
Your series 24 license in addition to those licenses you have already obtained. The series 7 is a prerequisite to take the series 24 exam and by the time you sit for the series 24 exam chances are you have completed all of your other licensing requirements. We hope that this answers many of your frequently asked questions about the series 24 license. If you have any additional questions please call or email us.