What is the Series 7 Exam?

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  • Last Modified Date: 03 November 2019
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The Series 7 Exam is a required examination for all who wish to buy or sell securities, and who wish to become registered representatives in the securities trade. The Series 7 Exam is offered by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, and can be taken in a variety of places across the country.

In order to take the Series 7 Exam, one must be qualified to do so. Those eligible to take the Series 7 include sales personnel in the Securities firms, officers of securities firms, and supervisors in Securities firms.

The Series 7 Exam covers several aspects of securities. One needs working knowledge of the security industry and structure. Those being tested must demonstrate proficiency in the laws regarding securities trading, the types of securities sold, and understanding of basic economic principals.

As well, those taking the Series 7 need to be conversant in tax law regarding securities. They also must identify appropriate sales techniques, and the different types of accounts a consumer purchasing securities can hold.

Additional exams are required for those who wish to run securities firms. These examination guidelines, however, mean that one must either be an excellent natural learner, or have had at least a few years of college studying these topics. Usually those taking the Series 7 have four-year degrees, at minimum, in either Business or Accounting.


It takes a considerable amount of time to take the Series 7. The exam consists of 250 multiple-choice questions. The test taking time total is 6 hours, and the exam is split in half and given in three-hour increments. This usually takes one day, though some may take the exam over two days.

In order to pass the exam, one must get 70% of the questions correct. If the exam is not passed on a first try, it can be retaken. One can also take study courses designed to help with passing the exam, but one is unlikely to pass the test without thorough knowledge of the subjects covered.


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Post 3

If you have an opportunity to take part in any kind of training before taking the Series 7, I would take advantage of it. I was a very good student in college, but the Series 7 exam was one of the most challenging tests I have taken.

I studied the Series 7 books that were given to me by my employer, and also went through the training course. As long as you have a good understanding of the material, you will be OK. Just don't go in to this test thinking that it will be easy.

If you don't pass the first time, really concentrate on the areas that you had trouble with, and take it again as soon as possible while the information is still fresh in your mind. Passing this exam is quite an accomplishment, so you really need to put some time and effort into it.

Post 2

I know many people who do not pass the Series 7 examination the first time. This just means that you have to do more studying and understand the material better. The area that I found most difficult was the section on Options. I thought I had a pretty good grasp on it, but found the test questions to be quite challenging in that area.

On the day you are scheduled to take the test, make sure you allow all the time you need to complete every question. It can seem quite daunting, but keep at it and don't leave any question blank.

You will find out that same day whether you passed or not. It is nice to know so you aren't wondering about it for days.

Post 1

While working in the investment department of a major bank, I studied very hard to take the Series 7 Exam. I worked with investment representatives who sold stocks, bonds and mutual funds to customers.

They offered a Series 7 prep course, but because of family obligations I was unable to attend. I had a huge book that I went through and studied on my own. This took me several weeks to get through. What I found most beneficial was making sure I took the tests at the end of the chapter.

If I didn't understand something, I would review the material until I had no trouble passing the practice exam questions. I was fortunate enough to pass the exam on my first try.

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