What is the Series 7 exam and what are Series 7 exam requirements?
The Financial Industry National Regulatory Authority (FINRA (formerly NASD)) Series 7 exam requirements are similar to the usual requirements of generally the licensing test that one must pass in order to become a stockbroker. In order to take the exam, one must first obtain “sponsorship”/employment from a FINRA or exchange member firm. In addition, one must submit a set of fingerprints and undergo a basic background check. Typically to register with a firm and consequently the exam you have to complete a U-4 application. On this application you must disclose such things as prior work history, criminal background (if any), etc.
Series 7 Exam Overview
Time limit: 6 hours (the exam is broken into two parts, each part has a 3 hour time limit)
Exam administration: The Series 7 exam is multiple choice and is given on computer
Number of questions: 250 total (125 for each part).
Pre-requisites: You have to be sponsored by a broker/dealer to schedule to sit for the Series 7 exam through FINRA
Exam fee: $250. Note that this includes a $90 NYSE development fee.
Exam dates: The Series 7 exam is administered Monday through Friday
Common Series 7 exam candidate questions:
What is the Series 7 exam?
If you have come this far you should have a pretty good understanding of what you are in for. The Series 7 exam is probably the most well known securities exam to the general public. You have most likely heard of it before on the silver screen in such movies as Wall Street or Boiler Room. There is a good chance the Series 7 exam will be the most difficult exam you have or will ever take. The Series 7 exam is also known as the General Securities Registered Representative exam. A person who holds a Series 7 license is usually referred to as a stockbroker by the general public. The Series 7 license is the broadest securities license you can attain and will allow you to sell most all types of securities. Depending on your state you may also be required to obtain a Series 63 license, and you firm may require you obtain a Series 66 license in place of the Series 63 license depending on the capacity in which you will work.
What content specifically does the Series 7 exam cover?
The Series 7 exam covers content such as corporate securities (stocks and bonds), municipal securities and U.S. government securities, options, direct participation programs, investment company products, variable contracts and federal securities laws.
What happens if I fail the Series 7 exam?
First off you must be positive. If you study correctly you will pass this exam. However, if for some reason you don’t get that magic 70% score and you fail your first attempt at the Series 7 exam, your sponsor can submit an amendment to reopen a window in which you can take the exam again. This window will not open until 30 days since your last exam attempt has transpired. At this point, your window will be open for 90 days.
There is no requirement for a sponsor firm to terminate your employment should you fail. However, every time you rewrite the exam, you must pay the required $200 registration fee. So your employer may require you to reimburse the fees paid to re-schedule the exam.
After three failed attempts, you must wait six months before you can re-take the exam for the fourth time. The six-month waiting period is appropriate since by that point you would have paid a total of approximately $600, and the cumulative expense by the fourth time would be $800. The six-month requirement is intended to provide a window in which an individual can ensure he or she is prepared for the fourth exam attempt. This process will then continue indefinitely, as there is no limit as to the number of times you can attempt the series 7 exam.