I started studying Schweser Notes in earnest this week. The first two study sessions were Ethics. Ethics was a breeze. I attribute this to two things:

  1. Ethics is the only subject that is basically identical from the level 1 curriculum all the way through the level 3 curriculum. There is not much new material here.
  2. Creighton University’s MIMFA (Master of Investment Management and Financial Analysis) program. If you think Ethics is difficult on the CFA exams, you should attempt an Ethics class with Professor Jorgensen.

The third study session was Behavioral Finance. It felt much easier in the Schweser Notes than it did while studying the curriculum. I even managed to score an 89% on Behavioral Finance in Schweser’s Q-Bank which made me think I have a decent understanding of the material. Perhaps I am displaying an overconfidence bias?

The fourth study session is where I am currently working: Private Wealth Management. It started out fine until the tax man cometh. It turns out that taxes are just as fun to study as they are to deal with in real life. It would not be so bad except all the formulas are nearly identical and not very intuitive. There are also several circular references between formulas with similar names such as:

Accrual Equivalent After-Tax Return = RAE = ( FVIFAT / Initial Investment ) 1/n  –  1

which can also be written as: RAE  = r ( 1 – TAE )

which is not to be confused with:

Accrual Equivalent Tax Rate = TAE  =  1  –  ( RAE / r )

See what they did there?

I am going to put this away for now and look at it with fresh eyes tomorrow morning.

“Bon Nuit” Tax Man.