We sponsor the FINRA exams that pertain to our business. These include the exams for general securities principals and supervisors, investment banking, private placements, state licensing exams and exams for registered investment advisers.
What exams do I need to take?
If you advise on investment banking or finance-related matters, but do not sell securities for a commission, you need the series 79;
If you sell private securities for a commission, but do not advise on investment banking or finance-related matters, you need the series 7 (more general) or the series 82 (more limited);
If you do both, you need both the 79 and the 7 or 82;
In all cases, you need a series 63, which registers you with the states;
If you manage people who do either 1 or 2 above, you need a series 24 or its equivalent, in addition to the other registrations.
Please note that your specific situation may require exams not mentioned here. A brief explanation of certain exams is included below. If you have any additional questions, we are more than happy to help.
Series 7 – General Securities Representative: This is the most comprehensive of all the securities licenses. By taking this exam, one becomes a Registered Representative of a broker-dealer and is then qualified to sell all types of securities. If your business activities are limited to raising capital for private companies or funds, you may not need this broad-brush exam, but if you intend to work with PIPEs, secondaries or other securities, this is the exam you need to take.
Series 24 – General Securities Principal: This examination qualifies individuals to supervise and manage branch activities. If you are working in a team of five or more clients, one of you will need to take the Series 24 in order to become the supervisor of your Office of Supervisory Jurisdiction. The Series 7, 79 or 82 is a prerequisite for this exam.
Series 63 - Uniform Securities Agent State Law Exam: Nearly all states require individuals to pass the Series 63 as a condition of state registration. This securities license entitles the holder to operate and solicit orders for any type of security in a particular state.
Series 65 - Uniform Investment Adviser Law Exam: This exam qualifies individuals as investment adviser representatives. Most states require this license to register as an investment adviser representative (IAR) of a registered investment adviser firm (RIA). Registering as an IAR allows you to conduct fee-based advisory work.
Series 66 - Uniform Combined State Law Exam: Passing the Series 66 exam is equivalent to the successful completion of both the Series 63 and Series 65 exams. This license allows one to act as both a securities agent and an investment adviser at the state level. This can be taken in lieu of the 63 to satisfy the requirement for operating in individual states.
Series 79 - Limited Representative - Investment Banking: This is a relatively new exam that FINRA created to ensure that investment bankers have adequate knowledge in mergers & acquisitions, financial restructuring, public investment banking and refinancing. If your activities are limited to advising on or facilitating investment banking transactions, this license can be taken in lieu of the Series 7. Any person whose activities go beyond investment banking, however, must separately qualify for exams specific to those activities. Actively selling an offering to potential investors requires an additional license (either the 7 or 82, depending on the offering type).
Series 82 – Limited Representative – Private Securities Offerings Representative: Passing this exam allows one to participate in primary offerings of private securities. This can be taken in lieu of the Series 7 if you plan on exclusively structuring and/or selling primary offerings of private placements. Representatives in this category are not permitted to effect resales or engage in secondary market trading of private placement securities.