A few months ago, a colleague recommended that I try Bill Campbell’s classes for the essay part of the exam. His feedback on the mock-exams and tips were instrumental in helping me pass the exam at last. Bill is extremely knowledgeable, wise & patient and a pleasure to work with. His materials were great, particularly the mocks that were rather challenging, but arm you for the worst and make the actual exam a breeze. I hope that you will have the pleasure and privilege of working with him as well.
Aleksandar Zavišić, CFA
I would like to thank Magician for all his help. He is so helpful that he guides candidates for free on AnalystForum. Right from L1, I have been learning through his comments on AnalystForum. His USP is that he explains the most difficult concept in less than 20 words!! Same goes for L2. Also for L3, his mocks are absolutely gold...The quality of questions are top notch, The ethics questions have to be practiced from his mocks. Its a must! It helped me tremendously. I would like to thank him again!
Tata Consultancy Services Ltd., India
Great Mock Exams
I honestly couldn't have passed without the am mocks that Bill provides and the detailed long and short answer guide. I would have been so lost without these to guide me on how much is too much and how little is too little. Just relying on past exam answer guides isn't great as they don't outline the point scoring system and don't help candidates with succinctness.
Exceptional Mock Exams
The Mock Exams are challenging and exposed my weak areas. Concisely written and accomplished the goal of an effective mock exam - to test my knowledge and help guide my further revisions. I If I could do it all over again, I would have purchased all the available mocks.
I also highly recommend the Survivor's Guide to the CFAI Command Words - instrumental to learning how to best structure answers in the "structured response" portion of the exam.
Mock Exams Matter More Than You Think
This is not the point in your exam prep where you should skimp on quality study materials. Level 3 is different than the prior two levels and I recommend purchasing the best quality Mocks out there. Bill devotes a great deal of time and effort into preparing the best Mock Exams on the market and I do not believe I would have passed without purchasing his Exams. I cannot recommend them enough. Devote the resources, time, and effort to Bill's Mock Exams.
Like No Other
Bill's survivor guide was just what I needed in order to learn how to attack the command words properly. His mocks are fantastically written and in a way that challenges candidates to go a step further. This forced me to elevate my thought process (and not panic!) during exam-like conditions, which in turn ultimately helped me understand the material better. Bill's mocks also tested the obscure details of the curriculum, which helped give comfort that no stone was left unturned. Lastly, Bill's short answers guide provided tremendous value in showing how to construct AM responses to get maximum credit while minimizing time spent. Bill provides a great service and receives my strongest recommendation.
Thank you for everything
If you are also a big user of Analyst Forum or Reddit like I was, chances are that you have come across S2000magician.
Throughout my study for all 3 levels, whenever I felt that a knowledge point was not explained clearly in the curriculum or had doubts about a practice question, I could almost always trust to find a clear and intuitive explanation by Magician on the forum. You can tell he is genuinely passionate about helping CFA candidates to succeed and he really knows the stuff inside out. However, I only paid for Bill's services for level 3, because I realised that the level of understanding for the material required for L3 is at a much deeper level, but the practice questions from CFA official and other 3rd party providers were inadequate.
I purchased the L3 membership, the command word guide, and all 5 mock exams and a grading session. I genuinely enjoyed reading the articles when I hit a wall with studying. And his mocks were the best out of all the 3rd mocks I had used and worth every penny:
1) they were worded clearly as in the actual exam, based on the actual curriculum
2) the formats are similar to the real experience
3) and they cover a broad range of material and is more difficult than the real exam by design
4) the answer keys are very clear, such that it helped me get to the level of detail required to clear L3 in one go.
Bill is always helpful, responsive and accommodating. For example, when I suggested an editable .pdf version be created to mimic the new CBT experience, he almost immediately made the change.
Amazing value for folks who want a deep understanding of the more difficult topics. Passed all three levels above 90%ile.
During my CFA prep across the three levels, I purchased the following items from FinancialExamHelp123, and I found them extremely helpful for understanding concepts:
- Articles for CFA Level 1, 2, and 3
- Command Word Guide (L3)
- AM mock exams (L3)
- Grading session for an AM mock exam (L3)
The articles helped with understanding nuanced content in a much more intuitive manner than other providers (and CFAI curriculum).
The mock exams cover the most difficult topics in L3, and help reinforce a deep understanding, much more so than any CFAI questions on these topics. The mocks come with both "model" answers which are representative of what would be expected as a response on the exam along with "comprehensive" answers which explain the topic in depth.
The grading session was very useful to understand the level of detail necessary in answers on L3 AM. I'd done mocks from a total of three providers and these were definitely the most representative of the real exam in terms of format. (Difficulty level was higher than that of the real exam - in my experience - which is a bonus!)
I have now used Bill for Levels II and III, and he has always been very helpful to me in my weak spots! I highly recommend him for his one-on-one Skype tutoring...he will work with you for as long as you need, and he is extremely patient. Best of all, he loves to teach, and it comes across in his interactions.
Level 3 Essay Portion Exam Marking
Bill is the go to person for Level 3 exam candidates who are looking for validation of their AM essay portion answers and strategy.
He goes the extra mile and his service and advice was a great value add that helped me clear Level 3 exam in my first attempt.
Bank of America
Exam marking a massive value add
Today I received my CFA level 3 result where I scored above the 90th percentile of all candidates.
Bill's exam marking service was a massive contributor to my success, he really helped me dissect the questions and answer them quickly and directly to score maximum points.
I recommend all candidates do several exam marking/critique sessions with Bill before sitting the level 3 exam. It's a massive value add.
Perfect for fine-tuning
Bill graded one of my AM practice exams for level III. During our call, he pointed out many important nuances and provided valuable insights. While I am anxiously awaiting my results, I genuinely feel he helped me to manage my time efficiently. His CFA knowledge is second-to-none and it was really great to have him go through my practice paper!
Makes Complex Topics Simple and Easy
Bill and his website have been absolutely instrumental in helping me pass all three CFA exams. He is able to take really complex topics and break them down to the point where they become so intuitive! Financialexamhelp123.com is the single best resource I could recommend for studying.
Clear, Concise, Easy to Understand
Financialexamhelp123.com has been an incredible resource for me as I have gone through the CFA examination process. Bill has created great content that provides the most important information from a section in a synthesized, easy to understand way. Specifically, I have been benefited from the background information that he provides in areas where the prep courses simply provide a formula with little explanation. When he added the paywall, I was happy to pay for it. It's definitely been an extremely useful resource. Thanks for all of the the blog posts and your posts on analystforum.com!
Hello Bill! Thank you very much for your invaluable articles that help me pass CFA L1 exam last year! Especially thank for Spot and Forward rates brilliant explanation.
Definite go to place for CFA help
I started my CFA journey recently and I happened to stumble into your page. I must say that you had done a brilliant job simplifying the difficult concepts and also reinforcing them through your beautiful explanations.
Thanks for your effort and time to make the CFA journey simpler for aspiring candidates like us.
Great Work ... I keep studying for the CFA level 1 at the moment and you made many points very clear to me with your examples!
Thank You, Bill
Many many thanks to you for helping me succeed in CFA Level I examination.
Your website was of immense help to me in preparing for the examination. There was not a single article in your website (across all areas in CFA Level I) that I missed to read. Each of those articles was extremely useful.
Thank you once again.
Messiah for the CFA candidates
I am a CFA Level II candidate. I had been struggling with a lot of topics in the curriculum, especially Swaps. I went through various websites and books to understand the pricing and valuation of Swaps, but the content on these sources always left me more flustered than before. Having gone through the simple explanation provided on the topic on this website with the help of just one example, has made me very comfortable with the concept and even numericals on Swap.
Thanks Bill!! You are doing a great job at simplifying finance and helping many like me.
Informative, clear, present info with different way.
Thanks for help
This is a great website to nail down difficult topics
Bill does a great job of explaining difficult topics in a way which is easy to understand. Sometimes, all that is needed to turn a weak subject into a strength is a different perspective.
Thank you for your fantastic website. Excellent pen; many highly valuable chuckles herein. And the clarity of your teaching is above par. Thank you.
"A spot interest rate is a discount rate that takes a single payment at one point in the future and discounts it back to today; a forward rate is a discount rate that takes a single payment at one point in the future and discounts it to another (nearer) time in the future"
This is a perfect example of the concise and lucid information on this website. Thanks, Bill.
Have found this website used along with analystforum super helpful. The specific examples break things down so memorization becomes less important and you can understand the logic behind the formulas. If you could include any articles discussing economic income, economic profit, MVA, and residual income it would be very much appreciated.
Chris from PA
Don't work for a company
Most Difficult Stuff: Straight to the Point
You know sometimes you are surfing the web trying to find the answers to your questions. You find something here and there - investopedia, Wikipedia, others - and you store the answers in your excel/word files or multiplying your bookmarks not remembering what was where a week later. And then, eventually, you discover Bill's resources. From this moment you need nothing more because it works like magic - S2000magic!
I found Bill's website while being the semi-active analystforum.com member. Bill offers a very great piece of advice there helping literally in every thread. From there I discovered his website.
On his online resource Bill does not cover every possible topic (at least at the time of writing). But you don't need it. What you find here is he most hard-to-grasp topics covered in a very detailed manner that actually explains the concept (not rewriting the curriculum in the different words). After going through the text you suddenly find yourself being absolutely comfortable with the topic that gives you confidence. And when you are confident in the hard topics you are confident in the exam.
You are a Genius and You Know it
In many ways I am your reflection albeit in a much smaller way though. The diversity aspect is astoundingly similar. Been a sportsman all my life, have an engineering diploma, keen interest in mathematics, an MBA (not in Finance) and worked in various sectors from Engineering to Health Insurance to Software (a bit). Can't stay at one place and can't keep up with something that's usual or rote. Have always admired (as I am admired by my colleagues, or so I believe) you and the magician at the [Analyst] Forum
CFA Level III candidate
Samridhi E-Seva Solution Pvt. Ltd.
Awesome Resource, Awesome Author!
I am a Level III candidate at the moment with many thanks to Mr. Campbell and this website. I've used just about all of the available study materials out there and I can conclude that this website has a special place in my CFA study arsenal. The presentation of the material is what makes this site so valuable and unique. Mr. Campbell breaks down complex formulas making them easy to understand, derive, and remember. Furthermore, I was often unable to grasp key concepts after watching Schweser videos and reading Schweser texts. This site came to the rescue on several occasions (private equity comes to mind)! I can't wait to see what the site has for me as I continue on to Level III success in June 2015!
Cetera Financial Group
Simple and Relevant
I passed the CFA level II exam this year. This was the third time I have taken the exam. For the most part, my study habits were the same all three times. A little bit of Schweser, a little bit of CFAI materials, nothing too out of the ordinary; the only difference is that this year was the first time I decided to use Bill Campbell’s website as a supplement, which in my opinion, was the glue that put everything that I had learned before together. Something that is very important in a test where true understanding and knowledge of the material is so much more important than any memorization or plug and chug methods that are followed by most test takers in today’s academic environment.
What makes Bill’s website special? To start off, the information there is not something you will find in the CFAI or Schweser books per se. Let’s start off with a quick example. Bill’s website has a reading on amortization, the article has examples using charts, excel tables, and text. Nowhere in the official materials are amortization tables a chapter, or a checked off LOS box or anything like that. However, as Bill subtly points out in the article, true understanding of amortization will make you automatic in a plethora of bond related problems, operational vs finance lease sections, goodwill, and many other topics throughout the test where this knowledge will help the test taker approach the question in a well thought out, rather than a robotic-student, way. Bill knows what sections CFA candidates have the most issues with and concentrates his teachings around those areas. There have been many times where I was failing to understand something complex, and the way Bill explains it, is in a more simple and relevant way. Sometimes the CFAI and even Schweser over-complicate things for no reason and you need a different perspective to understand it better.
Overall, I would highly recommend Bill’s website, it is certain to clear up confusion of any one of the many different topics on the exam.
Mr. Campbell III answered a few of my questions I posted on Analyst Forum. His explanation was very easy to understand even for someone like me who does not have a strong mathematics/finance background. I find "Financial Exam Help 123" is also very helpful to understand CFA exam material concepts. Highly recommended!!
Bill Campbell is the Man!
To whom it may concern,
Bill Campbell III or as known on AnalystForum, S2000magician, is a great resource for CFA prep and above all else, the epitome of a mentor. This website he created for the purpose of helping CFA candidates pass the exams did just that for me.
I took Level I in December 2013 and all L1 questions I asked, 99% of the time the best and easiest to understand answer and reasoning behind the answer was due to Bill's explanation.
His topic overviews for Level II on this website were of immense help in the final weeks leading up to the June 2014 exam. For me, this involved two key sections; derivatives and fixed income investments. The explanations behind the formulas and theories really cement each concept into your mind so that you can move from memorization to an intricate level of understanding needed to pass the Level II exam. An apt simile to describe what I am trying to say is the phrase "You should know this like the back of your hand." I know I will be visiting this site in the future as June 2015 gets closer and closer for Level 3.
In summation, to future test takers, check out this website, read and reread your weak topics explained by Bill as a complement to your studying and you will have a great shot at passing your exam.
Very Good Articles for my CFA I Exam Preparation
I found a link to Bill's articles on the AnalystForum, and read most of this CFA I articles the week before the exam.
The articles improved my understanding of the difficult topics. Many good explanations and examples gave me the knowledge to solve test problems quickly. The articles are also detailed, giving in-depth knowledge in many areas. So if you feel you need more knowledge in, for example, ratio impacts of financial or operating leasing, WACC or Fixed Income then financialexamhelp123.com is a good resource.
Santander Consumer Bank AS
The Oracle of Analyst Forum
As you may or may not know, Bill is also famously known as S2000magician on AnalystForum. In fact, it was there that he helped guide me, and countless other candidates, through many of the CFA's tricky concepts. So you can imagine my excitement when I found out that not only does he tutor, but he does so in Southern California!
If you thought his explanations on AnalystForum were good, I can assure you they are even better in person. Bill strikes a great balance of pushing you to think through the material while also guiding you through the rough spots. His explanations are not only clear and insightful, but he is constantly thinking of ways to make it more intuitive. He is also very personable and has a great sense of humor which helps to make the sessions enjoyable.
This was my second attempt at level II, and I wouldn't have been able to pass without his help. I would absolutely recommend him to any CFA candidate. Thanks Bill!
CFA Level II Candidate
Bill was an excellent tutor for the Level II CFA exam. He is very knowledgeable of all topics and has a great way of explaining them. Meeting with Bill undoubtedly increased my chances of success and kept me on target. He is patient, engaging, and accommodating. I highly recommend Bill for your CFA preparation.
An Incredible Resource
I used Bill's website as well as attended lectures lead by Bill in my preparation for Level II. Bill has incredible depth and breadth of knowledge of the CFA subject matter and is able to simplify concepts in a way that is much more clear and manageable. Bill also has great insight regarding the exam, studying strategies, and more. Any CFA Candidate would be wise to use this resource in their exam prep.
This site is absolutely useful for newbie who tries to confront with the CFA exam in the first time.
none (i am student now)
Helps Make Things Easy to Understand
Bill's site is one of the most helpful CFA prep sites. He really focuses on important topics that can be confusing, but makes them easy to understand. I have let my friends taking the CFA exam all over the world know about this site, and all of them have agreed that this site is super useful. Thanks Bill!
I think it is remarkable to find someone who is so selfless with their time and concerned with helping others. The CFA journey is a long lonely road. Knowing that Bill was waiting around the bend on the Analyst Forum and his website was particularly comforting on the days when I thought the fog would never clear. Don’t go anywhere, I could be on this road a while.
Fantastic Resource to Utilitize During Your CFA Journey
Bill is a great resource to utilize during your CFA trek. He has a tremendous foundation of knowledge regarding each level of the exam and provides detailed solutions to any problems you run into. I was pleasantly surprised in the timeliness Bill responded to my questions and the relative ease in his explanations. I would recommend to any analyst undertaking the CFA program to utilize financialexamhelp123.com to review material, submit questions and find alternative approaches to otherwise difficult material.
Bill Campbell - Worth Every Penny as a Teacher for CFA
I did not use the website (probably should have though!), but I did attend many of Bill's lectures - as many as I could actually. He not only makes the complex CFA topics seem easy to understand, he actually makes the material interesting, and throws in enough anecdotal support to trigger your memory when certain terms resurface on the test. I would recommend him to anyone taking the test.
His magic tricks, well the one I saw anyway, are pretty darned impressive too.
I have used this website and have gotten many questions answered by Bill, who is otherwise known as S2000magician. Bill has a unique talent of being able to explain complex subjects simply, which makes it easier to understand. He knows what the curriculum is trying to make you understand and has helped me a number of times.
He also has a great sarcastic tone when people on Analyst Forum are lazy, which provides priceless entertainment when you need it most.
The Best CFAI Supplement Out There
I used this website extensively in preparation for the Level I exam, and I'll do the same for Levels II & III. The content on this website is not a re-hashing of the material in the CFAI books, you will (by and large) only find information related to the more difficult topics for each exam.
Bill is a great writer, but more importantly he understands where the CFAI books fall short - his examples combined with his ability to succinctly describe an equation or concept greatly improved my comprehension of the material.
Knowledge, Understanding, and a Sense of Humor
Bill Campbell’s instruction has contributed greatly to my preparation for the CFA exams. Not only does he have in-depth knowledge of the CFA curriculum, he understands what candidates find challenging and where we need additional instruction. FinancialExamHelp123.com helped me tremendously as I prepared for Levels I and II. He is able to take difficult topics and make them easy to understand, memorable and relatable to other topics in the curriculum – and he has a sharp sense of humor! Thanks Bill for your help preparing for Level I and II!
CFA Level II Candidate
I believe thousands of candidates feel fortunate to find this marvelous website. It describes several confusing core concepts with simple, effective and efficient words.
Thanks Bill, keep on posting, GBU.
CFA Level II Help
I was lucky enough to spend a few hours with Bill via a web/telephone session in the weeks leading up the Level II exam. Bill helped me to understand a number of complex topics by breaking down the concepts to the core in a way that the study materials did not. I look forward to a positive result this year and further help from Bill for Level III!
Your articles and explanations are easier to understand than the CFA curriculum and even Schweser Notes. It's really like magic to help us keep fighting for the challenging topics. Many thanks for your help.
EFG Asset Management
Simple, yet thorough. Highly recommended!
The explanations Bill has provided on his blog is the perfect complement to the CFAI material. Whenever I came across a topic in the text that I couldn't figure out just from reading the material (over and over), I immediately went to this blog seeking a better explanation. Never found myself disappointed!
The detailed, yet effective, breakdown of the Justified Ratios explanation is an example of the time-saving complementary resources we candidates need in order to tackle the CFA.
Thank You, Bill
(1) For Bill
I'm glad to have joined AF and met up (though virtually) with awesome peeps who are very helpful; and I believe it's the mutual encouragement that keep us going. Among many, Bill (aka S2000magician) has been helping us in the forum pertaining to most of the questions raised; and this has been especially helpful for people like me; who are studying independently (without any study center). Bill has been very effective in making abstract concepts easier to comprehend for many of us. We are very grateful for his dedication. Thank you, Bill.
(2) Bill's webpage
Impressively done up! Most of the hand-picked concepts have been well explained and I'm sure many people will think likewise. Keep up the good work!
Great Job, Bill
This website helped me understand some of the intricate topics (for CFA Level I) very fast; e.g., the CAL, CML, SML.
The language used is simple and such that retention is easier. Many thanks and a great job Bill.
Why Would You Need Anything Else?
I've found Bill's materials and articles very helpful for CFA Level III preparations. I didn't have to struggle with additional resources, one read through risk management, swaps and synthetic positions made everything so simple. Besides, there are some great tips and strategies on how to tackle the exam and approach questions.
Definitely a must-read website for every CFA Candidate.
Dealers are Cheap
So, after struggling with the Triangular Arbitrage in Econ, I read [Bill's] article and got it right away. I think I will remember forever that dealers are cheap 🙂
Fifth Third Bank
[Bill] is undoubtedly the most helpful person on AF (Analyst Forum). He has painstakingly helped everyone asking for genuine help. His command on finance subjects is supreme. He makes concepts crystal clear. He is the mockingbird of CFA community. ("Mockingbirds don’t do one thing except make music for us to enjoy. They don’t eat up people’s gardens, don’t nest in corn cribs, they don’t do one thing but sing their hearts out for us. That’s why it’s a sin to kill a mockingbird.") [Bill] doesn't do one thing except make everyone understand the concepts of finance. Hoping to see you in helping all of us for CFA level III 2015 exam.
[Bill] patiently helped me, and helped me to understand, any problem I posted. Even when I asked boneheaded questions, he was there to help! If he can help me understand these concepts, he can help anyone.
The Best Teacher
[Bill] is the best teacher I've ever come across, he simplifies difficult topics in the CFA curriculum. He was of enormous help in my preparation for Level I and II CFA exams.
Bill without a doubt is the person to reach out to if you are having difficulty grasping a concept when studying for your exam. Not only will you get a complete and thorough answer in a timely manner, he will explain the concept in a way that is easy to understand and will stick with you until exam day.
He is the best at what he does.