Series 66 Exam: Your Path to Financial Industry Success

Article Summary

The Series 66 Exam is a crucial milestone for individuals seeking to advance their careers in the financial industry. The exam, administered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in collaboration with state regulatory authorities, evaluates the knowledge of financial laws, regulations, and ethical practices required for investment advisor representatives. Candidates must achieve a score of 73% or higher to pass.

Overview of the series 66 exam

The Series 66 Exam is a securities licensing exam administered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) in collaboration with state regulatory authorities. It is designed to assess the knowledge and understanding of financial laws, regulations, and ethical practices required for individuals seeking to become investment advisor representatives.

The exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions, and candidates are given 150 minutes to complete it. To pass the Series 66 Exam, candidates must achieve a score of 73% or higher. It is worth noting that some states may have additional requirements or passing scores beyond the national standard.

Preparing for the series 66 exam

Proper preparation is key to success in the Series 66 Exam. Before registering for the exam, candidates should familiarize themselves with the eligibility criteria and registration process outlined by their state regulatory authority. Once eligibility is confirmed, candidates can develop a study plan that suits their schedule and allows ample time for preparation.

There are numerous resources available to aid in Series 66 Exam preparation. Study guides, textbooks, and online courses provide comprehensive coverage of the exam content. Practice exams are particularly valuable, as they simulate the exam environment and help candidates become familiar with the question format and time constraints.

Understanding the exam content

The Series 66 Exam covers a range of topics that financial professionals need to grasp to excel in their roles. Major areas of focus include securities regulations, investment vehicle characteristics, and ethical practices. Candidates should pay special attention to understanding the legal framework governing the securities industry, such as the Securities Act of 1933, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.

To reinforce learning, candidates should familiarize themselves with practical applications of the exam content. This can involve reviewing case studies, analyzing real-world scenarios, and exploring how different investment products are regulated and offered to clients.

Strategies for success

When preparing for the Series 66 Exam, it is essential to adopt effective study strategies that maximize comprehension and retention. Here are some strategies to help you succeed:

  1. Active Reading and Note-Taking: Actively engage with the study materials by highlighting key points, underlining important information, and taking concise notes. This process helps reinforce understanding and facilitates better retention of the material.
  2. Flashcards and Mnemonics: Create flashcards or mnemonic devices to memorize essential facts, formulas, and definitions. This technique can be particularly helpful in recalling information quickly during the exam.
  3. Practice with Sample Questions: Utilize practice exams and sample questions to familiarize yourself with the format and content of the Series 66 Exam. This allows you to gauge your knowledge and identify areas that require additional focus.
  4. Study Groups and Peer Support: Joining or forming a study group can provide a collaborative learning environment. Discussing concepts, explaining them to others, and sharing insights can deepen understanding and reinforce learning. Additionally, interacting with peers who are also preparing for the exam can provide motivation and support.
  5. Time Management: Develop a study plan that allocates sufficient time for each topic. Break down your study sessions into manageable chunks and set specific goals for each session. Adhering to a schedule can help you stay organized, cover all the necessary material, and reduce last-minute cramming.
  6. Utilize Online Resources: Take advantage of online resources such as interactive quizzes, video tutorials, and digital study materials. Many reputable websites offer comprehensive study guides and practice exams specifically tailored to the Series 66 Exam.

Taking the series 66 exam

On the day of the Series 66 Exam, it is crucial to be prepared and employ effective test-taking strategies. Consider the following tips:

  1. Arrive Early and Be Prepared: Plan to arrive at the testing center well ahead of time to avoid any unnecessary stress. Make sure you have the required identification documents, such as a government-issued ID, and any other materials permitted by the testing center guidelines.
  2. Manage Test Anxiety: Test anxiety can affect your performance. Practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, positive visualization, or mindfulness exercises to help calm your nerves before and during the exam.
  3. Read Instructions Carefully: Take a few moments to carefully read through the instructions before diving into the questions. Pay attention to any specific guidelines, time limits, or sections that may require different approaches.
  4. Answer Easier Questions First: Start with questions that you find easier or are more confident about. This approach helps build momentum and boosts your confidence. Flag difficult or unsure questions to revisit later, ensuring you allocate time effectively.
  5. Budget Your Time: The Series 66 Exam is timed, so it’s important to manage your time wisely. Keep an eye on the clock and allocate appropriate time to each question. If you’re unsure about a particular question, don’t dwell on it for too long. Make an educated guess or mark it for review, and move on to the next one.
  6. Review Your Answers: If time permits, review your answers before submitting the exam. Pay attention to any marked questions, and double-check for any mistakes or overlooked details. However, avoid second-guessing yourself excessively, as it may lead to unnecessary errors.


Is the series 66 exam difficult?

The difficulty level of the Series 66 Exam can vary depending on individual preparation and prior knowledge. However, with dedicated study and thorough understanding of the exam content, many candidates find success.

What career opportunities does passing the series 66 exam provide?

Passing the Series 66 Exam opens doors to various roles in the financial industry, such as investment advisor representatives, financial advisors, and wealth managers.

Can I retake the series 66 exam if i don’t pass?

Yes, candidates who do not pass the exam can retake it after waiting for a specified period, usually around 30 days. However, it is advisable to review and strengthen weak areas before attempting a retake.

How long are series 66 exam results valid?

The Series 66 Exam results are typically valid for two years. After this period, candidates may be required to retake the exam or fulfill other renewal requirements set by their state regulatory authority.

Key takeaways

  • The Series 66 Exam is an important examination for financial professionals, assessing their knowledge of securities regulations and ethical practices.
  • Effective preparation involves understanding exam requirements, creating a study plan, and utilizing resources such as study guides and practice exams.
  • Exam success is built on comprehensive understanding of key topics, including securities regulations and investment vehicle characteristics.
  • Employing effective study strategies and seeking support from study groups or mentors can enhance preparation efforts.
  • On the day of the exam, candidates should arrive early, manage test anxiety, read questions carefully, and allocate time wisely.
View Article Sources
  1. Qualification Exams – Finra
  2. Exam Candidates Requiring Testing Accommodations – Finra
  3. Series 66 – Uniform Combined State Law Exam – Finra
  4. Series 66 Test Specifications – North American Securities Administrators Association
  5. Exam FAQs – North American Securities Administrators Association