Are FTX account holders covered by SIPC?

The answer: only SEC-registered broker-dealers offer SIPC insurance. Crypto platforms like FTX are not SEC-registered broker-dealers. Continue reading

The answer: only SEC-registered broker-dealers offer SIPC insurance. Crypto platforms like FTX are not SEC-registered broker-dealers.

SIPC stands for Securities Investor Protection Corporation. It was created in 1970 after several brokerage firms went belly up and as a result customers were wiped out.

All brokerage firms that sell stocks or bonds to the public, or that clear securities transactions are required to be members of SIPC. SIPC is a nonprofit corporation owned by its members. Member firms pay into a general insurance fund used to meet customer claims in case of bankruptcy.

If a broker-dealer goes bankrupt, SIPC provides insurance for the assets in investors brokerage accounts. SIPC may also offer insurance to customers from unauthorized trading in, or theft from, their securities accounts.

SIPC members must display an official sign showing their membership. Today that usually means “member SIPC” at the bottom of the brokerage firm’s home page, but if there is a physical office for customers then the requirement sign or plaque in a visible place.

What you need to know about SIPC if you’re taking the SIE exam

If you’re taking the FINRA Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam you need to know the following about SIPC:

SIPC offers up to $500,000 in coverage per customer for securities and cash, with a $250,000 limit for cash only. So if a broker-dealer firm goes bankrupt, then SIPC and the court-appointed Trustee work to return customers’ securities and cash as quickly as possible.

SIPC does not protect against all losses. For example, if the financial markets go down, and the value of customers’ assets declines, SIPC does not cover these type of losses.

If a customer has both a cash and margin account, the accounts are combined for SIPC coverage purposes.

To repeat, SIPC covers a maximum of $500,000 per “separate customer” at a broker-dealer or clearing firm—including up to $250,000 in cash. Total coverage can be higher for multiple accounts owned by the same person if the accounts are considered to be held by separate customers. There are five categories of separate customers defined by SIPC. These categories include (1) individual accounts; (2) joint accounts; (3) accounts held by executors, administrators, and guardians/custodians/conservators (such as UGMA accounts); (4) accounts held by corporations, partnerships, or unincorporated associations; and (5) trust accounts.

So if you are taking the SIE exam, and you get a question that asks if someone has $300,000 in a individual brokerage account, and $200,000 in a joint brokerage account with a spouse, and $400,000 in a trust account, all with the same broker-dealer, how much is covered by SIPC in the event the firm goes bankrupt?  Because all three accounts are considered to be held by separate customers, the correct answer is $900,000 or all of the funds. 

If your SIE exam asks how much is SIPC covered if the market falls dramatically and the value in an investor’s account drops by half, the correct answer is zero, because SIPC only covers investor losses due to broker-dealer failure, not due to market losses.

Failed the SIE? What To Do Now.

Passing a securities exam like the SIE exam is an important step in your career. But what if you don’t pass the first time? Here are tips for restudying. Continue reading

Photo used in image by [fizkes]/stock.adobe.com

You took the SIE exam or another FINRA exam, and you didn’t pass. What should you do? The old adage, “If at first you don’t succeed…” definitely applies here. Take a few days to rest if needed, but it’s best to get back into studying as soon as possible. To help with the process of refocusing your efforts, here are some important things to know and recommendations for increasing your chances of passing the SIE exam the next time.

You’re not alone.

First, don’t be too hard on yourself. Securities exams are not designed to be easy, and many people have to take an exam more than once. It happens. Keep in mind that although the SIE exam is the foundational exam for the securities industry, it is still a challenging exam that requires around 60 hours of study time.

How many times can you take the SIE exam?

The good news is you can retake the SIE exam as many times as you need to (as long as your firm allows it if taking the exam through a firm). However, FINRA imposes a waiting period after each exam attempt. There is a 30/30/180-day rule with respect to the SIE and other FINRA exams. This means that you must wait 30 days after the first time you fail, and another 30 days if you fail again. If you fail a third time or more, you’ll have to wait 180 days to retake the exam.

What Happens When You Fail the SIE Exam?

At the end of your testing session, you will see your unofficial result on the computer screen telling you whether you passed or failed. You’ll only see a numerical score if you fail the exam. When you pass, it will just say “pass” with no score given. If you don’t pass, your score report will include a section analysis that shows your performance on each section of the exam. This is very helpful so you know which sections to focus on when you start studying again.

If you take the SIE exam in person at a testing center, you’ll get a printout of your results. If you take the exam remotely using Prometric’s ProProctor system, you’ll receive an encrypted email with your results. You can also contact the FINRA support team to request a copy of your score report at (240) 386-4040.

Where else do your exam results appear and who can see them?

You might be wondering whether current or future employers will be able to see that you failed a securities exam. The short answer is, it depends. Within three business days of taking an exam, FINRA will post your official results to their systems. There are two primary systems where your exam history might be visible to others.

Central Registration Depository (CRD)

One system is the Central Registration Depository (CRD). CRD is the securities industry online registration and licensing database. Information in CRD is obtained through forms that broker-dealers complete as part of the registration and licensing process. If you’ve never been registered in the securities industry and aren’t taking the SIE exam through a firm, then your exam result will not appear in CRD. However, if you take the SIE exam through a broker-dealer and the broker-dealer files a Form U4 for you, then your SIE exam result will be pulled into your CRD exam history. Your firm will have access to your CRD record.

But don’t worry, a non-passing exam result and score will only be displayed in CRD until you retake and pass the exam. After you pass the exam, any prior history of failing will not appear in the system. Passing results will not show scores—they will simply say “pass.”

BrokerCheck

Another FINRA system that displays information about registered individuals is the BrokerCheck website. BrokerCheck is a free tool for the public to research the professional backgrounds of brokers and brokerage firms. The information in BrokerCheck comes from CRD. If you’ve only taken the SIE exam, your result will not appear on BrokerCheck. But once you pass a representative-level exam such as the Series 6 or Series 7, then a passing SIE result will show up in BrokerCheck. Non-passing exam results do not appear in BrokerCheck.

Tips For Passing Your Next SIE Exam Attempt

Try to redouble your efforts and study hard for the next 30 days so you can retake the SIE exam as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more likely it is that the material you’ve learned will slip away. You also risk giving up completely if you wait too long to get back on track.

In addition, FINRA does change its exam questions. Therefore, the sooner you retake an exam, the higher chance you have of facing some of the same or similar questions. Write down everything you can remember about the exam. Then, use your experience to your advantage and focus your studying on what you know was on the exam and may well be again.

How to re-study for your securities exam

Needless to say, you should carefully consider how to approach preparing for a second attempt at the SIE or another securities exam. It shouldn’t be done in one weekend of cramming. The SIE is a knowledge test. Learning (and passing) comes from layering the knowledge and building mental connections that you can use when you take the exam—and beyond. As with any knowledge test, the more effort you put into studying, the better your chance of success. That said, your re-study strategy will depend to some extent on your score on the first exam attempt.

If you didn’t have a strong performance on the exam:

The minimum passing score for the SIE exam is 70%. If you scored below 60% on your first try, you may want to approach studying as if for the first time. If you’re using Solomon SIE study materials, use a pre-set Solomon study schedule and follow it every day. Doing this will greatly increase your chance of passing. If you don’t follow a pre-set Solomon schedule, we recommend the following plan at a minimum:

    • Read the SIE Study Guide. Not reading the Study Guide is the number one reason people fail their exam. Take notes as you read and review your notes regularly. If you don’t understand something, try to explain it to someone else or to yourself out loud. This “be the teacher” technique will help you master the material. Read Solomon’s article about this technique.
    • Quiz yourself with SIE practice questions in the Exam Simulator. After reading each chapter of the Study Guide, take up to six sub-chapter quizzes per sub-chapter in the Solomon Exam Simulator. The quizzes are for learning more than they are for assessment, so don’t be alarmed if your quiz scores are low and do not get bogged down by taking more than six sub-chapter quizzes per chapter.
    • Assess your knowledge with SIE practice exams in the Exam Simulator. Once you’ve read the entire Study Guide, at least once, then take at least six full practice exams in the Exam Simulator. Aim to get your Solomon Pass Probability™ score to at least 75% before you take the SIE exam again. If your Pass Probability™ is below 75%, review your results charts in the Exam Simulator and re-study the chapters and topics where you’re not doing well.
If you almost passed:

What if you were very close to passing the SIE exam on your first attempt, scoring close to 70%? In this case, you probably don’t need to start studying from scratch. Look at your exam score report and focus your studies on the exam sections that you didn’t perform strongly in. Also, if you’ve taken at least five full SIE practice exams in the Solomon Exam Simulator, look at your Exam Results charts to see if there are any sections that you’re scoring under 75% in. Focusing on these weaker sections, take the following steps:

    • Reread parts of the SIE Study Guide. Revisit your weaker sections in the Study Guide and/or review the notes you took when you read it the first time.
    • Quiz yourself with SIE practice questions in the Exam Simulator. Take three more quizzes on your weaker sub-chapters. Remember, the purpose of taking quizzes is to strengthen your learning, so try not to focus too much on your quiz scores. You can even take the sub-chapter quizzes open book!
    • Watch the SIE Video Lecture. If you have the Solomon Video Lecture, watch the lecture on these weaker chapters as well. The Video Lecture provides a helpful overview of the key concepts for each chapter. You can download the Video Lecture slides and print them out to take notes while you watch.
    • Assess your knowledge with SIE practice exams in the Exam Simulator. The Exam Simulator is a tool to help you apply the concepts you’ve learned, but it’s also a diagnostic tool for gauging your readiness to pass the exam. After you’ve done all the previous steps for the chapters you needed to revisit, you’re ready to take five more full practice exams in the Exam Simulator. When your Solomon Pass Probability™ score is 75% or above, you should be ready to sit for the SIE exam again.

You can do it.

Don’t let this temporary setback put the brakes on your career goals! Everyone can pass the SIE exam, no matter what their educational background or career experience is. You just need to follow an effective study plan with quality study materials. You can do it!

Visit the Solomon SIE page for more information about Solomon study materials for the SIE exam. And try Solomon’s free, 75-question SIE practice test to gauge your knowledge and sample the industry-leading Solomon Exam Simulator.

Solomon Partners with State College of Florida to Offer SIE Exam Prep Course

Solomon Exam Prep’s SIE study program is available as an on-demand course via State College of Florida’s Lifelong Learning and Workforce Development Division. Continue reading

Solomon Exam Prep is excited to be partnering with the State College of Florida (SCF) to offer an online SIE Exam Prep course through SCF’s Lifelong Learning and Workforce Development Division. The self-paced, non-credit course will prepare students to sit for the FINRA Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) Exam.

The SIE Exam Prep course is for anyone who is curious about the world of finance and investing, or who might be interested in a career in the field. The FINRA SIE Exam tests general knowledge of the securities industry and is the foundational requirement for many careers, including stockbroker, financial advisor, investment banker, and more. A passing score on the SIE Exam is valid for your years, and having it on your resume can open doors to jobs in the finance and securities industries.

“Solomon Exam Prep is thrilled to be working with the State College of Florida to help SCF students pass the FINRA SIE exam and other securities licensing exams.”

Jeremy Solomon, President & Co-founder of Solomon Exam Prep

What does the course include?

Course registration includes 180-day access to the Solomon SIE Total Study Package, which contains the following digital study materials:

    • Study Guide
    • Exam Simulator
    • Audiobook
    • Video Lecture
    • Flashcards

The Solomon SIE Total Study Package also comes with helpful resources and tools, including Solomon SIE Study Schedules, up to twenty Ask the Professor questions, and Pass Probability™, an AI technology that predicts exam readiness.

About the State College of Florida

Established in 1957, State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) is the region’s first and largest public college, serving 11,000 college credit students annually at three campuses and via online classes. Another 14,000 participants annually take professional development and personal enrichment classes through SCF’s Lifelong Learning and Workforce Development Division, which offers year-round non-credit courses both in person and online.

Interested in partnering with Solomon?

Solomon Exam Prep partners with dozens of colleges and universities to bring the Solomon SIE exam prep program to students across the country. Solomon can tailor its SIE curriculum to fit any course, including credit and non-credit courses, as part of a current course such as Finance or Capital Markets, or as a self-study program. The Solomon platform works equally well for in-person, hybrid, and online courses.

Join institutions such as State College of Florida, Elon University, Florida Memorial University, Pepperdine University, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, Claflin University, University of Delaware, Adelphi University, University of Nebraska-Omaha, Seton Hall University, Ohio Dominican University, Georgetown University, Widener University, and University of Dallas in partnering with Solomon.

To learn more about the ways colleges and universities can partner with Solomon, contact Beth Hamilton, Higher Education Development Manager, at beth@solomonexamprep.com or 503-601-0212.

Elon University Students Studying for the SIE Exam with Solomon

Solomon Exam Prep’s SIE exam prep materials are helping finance students at Elon University prepare to take the FINRA SIE exam. Continue reading

Solomon Exam Prep is delighted to be partnering with Elon University in Elon, North Carolina, to bring Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) Exam prep to students this Spring 2022 term. Twenty students in the FIN 4780 SIE course are studying with Solomon SIE prep materials. The course will prepare students to take not only the FINRA SIE exam, but also the FINRA Series 7 exam after graduation. Instructor Thibaut G. Morillon, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Finance in the Martha and Spencer Love School of Business, is teaching the course.

Elon students taking the course receive the Solomon Exam Prep SIE Total Package, which contains all the study materials they need to prepare for the SIE exam:

    • Digital Study Guide
    • Exam Simulator
    • Video Lecture
    • Audiobook
    • Digital Flashcards
    • Free resources and tools, including Solomon SIE Study Schedules and Pass Probability™, Solomon’s proprietary technology that predicts when students are ready to take their exams.
What’s the SIE exam?

The SIE exam was created by FINRA as a foundational exam for those wanting to enter the securities industry. Studying for the SIE exam enables students to learn the basics of the finance and securities industries, such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and ETFs. In addition, passing the exam can open doors to a variety of careers. Anyone over 18 years old can take the SIE and results are valid for four years, so college is a perfect time to take the exam.

The SIE exam is a co-requisite to the Series 7 and other FINRA representative-level exams. To take the Series 7 exam, a FINRA member firm must employ and sponsor you. If you pass the SIE and get hired by a broker-dealer, you can then take the Series 7 and become a registered representative in the securities industry.

Interested in partnering with Solomon?

Solomon Exam Prep partners with dozens of colleges and universities to bring the Solomon SIE exam prep program to students across the country. Solomon can tailor its SIE curriculum to fit any course, including credit and non-credit courses, as part of a current course such as Finance or Capital Markets, or as a self-study program. The Solomon platform works equally well for in-person, hybrid, and online courses. And instructors receive access to the Instructor Portal, class slides, quizzes and exams, a custom study schedule, and QwizBang, Solomon’s interactive game platform.

Join institutions such as Elon University, Florida Memorial University, Pepperdine University, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, University of Delaware, Adelphi University, University of Nebraska-Omaha, Seton Hall University, Ohio Dominican University, Georgetown University, Widener University, and University of Dallas in partnering with Solomon.

To learn more about the ways colleges and universities can partner with Solomon, contact Beth Hamilton, Higher Education Development Manager, at beth@solomonexamprep.com or 503-601-0212.

Solomon Exam Prep Exhibiting at Midwest Finance Association 2022 Conference

If you’re attending the Midwest Finance Association 2022 Conference March 10-12, visit Solomon Exam Prep’s exhibitor booth. Continue reading

Solomon Exam Prep is proud to be sponsoring and exhibiting at the Midwest Finance Association 2022 Conference, which will be held at the Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel in Chicago, IL, March 10–12. Solomon invites attendees to visit our booth to learn about how Solomon provides its innovative Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam prep to colleges and universities across the country.

About the MFA

Founded in 1951, the Midwest Finance Association is a nonprofit professional association of academics and finance industry professionals dedicated to the furtherance of finance education. The organization currently has over 400 members from more than forty countries, and membership is open to anyone who has a career in the area of finance. The annual conference provides a forum for the exchange of intellectual ideas between academic and business circles.

What is the SIE Exam?

The FINRA SIE exam is the foundational exam required for anyone who wants to become licensed to work in the securities industry. Passing the SIE shows potential employers that you have mastered the basics of the industry and opens doors to a variety of careers. Anyone over 18 years old can take the SIE, so it’s perfect for college students.

Solomon Exam Prep partners with dozens of colleges and universities to bring the Solomon SIE exam prep program to students across the country. Join institutions such as Florida Memorial University, Pepperdine University, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, University of Delaware, Adelphi University, University of Nebraska-Omaha, Seton Hall University, Ohio Dominican University, Georgetown University, Widener University, and University of Dallas in partnering with Solomon.

To learn more about the ways colleges and universities can partner with Solomon, contact Beth Hamilton, Higher Education Development Manager, at beth@solomonexamprep.com or 503-601-0212.

Florida Memorial University, InspereX, and Solomon Exam Prep Bring SIE Exam Prep to FMU Students

With sponsorship from InspereX, FMU students will receive the Solomon study materials and exam fee they need to pass the FINRA Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) Exam. Continue reading

Solomon Exam Prep is pleased to announce a partnership with Florida Memorial University and InspereX to support FMU School of Business students in preparing for and taking the FINRA Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) Exam. Through this partnership, FMU is offering an SIE Self-Study Program led by Visiting Instructor of Finance and Marketing, Lawrence Goehrig, in Spring 2022.

Thanks to the generosity of InspereX, FMU students will receive the top-of-the-line Solomon SIE Total Study Package. InspereX is also funding the purchase of hardcopy Study Guide upgrades for all students in the program, plus the FINRA SIE Exam fee, which is $80.00 per student.

Solomon Exam Prep President Jeremy Solomon says

“Solomon is honored to work with FMU and InspereX to help prepare students to take the FINRA SIE Exam. The SIE is the foundational exam required for anyone who wants to become licensed to work in the securities industry, and passing the SIE exam will give FMU students a competitive edge in the job market.”

Geared to fit a variety of learning styles, the Solomon SIE Exam Total Package includes the full line of Solomon SIE materials: digital Study Guide, Exam Simulator, Audiobook, Video Lecture with downloadable slides, and digital Flashcards. Students will also be able to take advantage of free resources and tools, including Solomon Study Schedules and Solomon Pass Probability™ technology. And with access to the Solomon Instructor Admin Portal, Professor Goehrig will be able to monitor his students’ progress to assist them as they study.

Florida Memorial University, founded in 1879, is one of the oldest academic centers in Florida, and is the only historically Black university in southern Florida. The university offers 27 undergraduate degree programs and three master’s programs.

InspereX is a leading fintech transforming how fixed income securities and market-linked products are accessed, evaluated, and traded. The firm has principal offices in Delray Beach, San Francisco, Chicago, and New York City.

About Solomon Exam Prep

Founded by Karen Solomon (Ph.D., University of Chicago) and Jeremy Solomon (MBA, Wharton), Solomon Exam Prep has helped thousands pass their securities licensing exams including the SIE, Series 3, 6, 7, 14, 22, 24, 26, 27, 28, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 63, 65, 66, 79, 82 and 99.

Solomon Exam Prep partners with dozens of colleges and universities to bring the Solomon SIE exam prep program to students across the country. Join institutions such as Florida Memorial University, Pepperdine University, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, University of Delaware, Adelphi University, University of Nebraska-Omaha, Seton Hall University, Ohio Dominican University, Georgetown University, Widener University, and University of Dallas in partnering with Solomon.

To learn more about the ways colleges and universities can partner with Solomon, contact Beth Hamilton, Higher Education Development Manager, at beth@solomonexamprep.com or 503-601-0212.

Pepperdine University Partners with Solomon on SIE Prep Course

Solomon Exam Prep’s Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) Exam prep materials will be used by students at Pepperdine University this Spring 2022 term. Continue reading

Solomon Exam Prep is thrilled to announce that Pepperdine University in Malibu, California, will be using the Solomon SIE curriculum for a course in the spring 2022 term. This marks the second time Pepperdine has used Solomon SIE materials in one of their courses in the Graziadio Business School, which offers full-time, part-time, and executive MBA programs, as well as doctorate, master’s, bachelor’s, joint degrees, and professional development certificate courses. 

The seven-week, in-person class, Contemporary Issues in Business and Management, will be taught by Professor Chris Manfrè, MBA, PhD, and will give students the chance to explore current topics in business and management. Students will be using the Solomon SIE Total Package as their main course material, which includes the digital Study Guide, Exam Simulator, Audiobook, Video Lecture, and Flashcards. The course will help prepare students to take the FINRA Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) Exam.

Bring the SIE To Your Campus

Solomon Exam Prep can tailor its SIE curriculum to fit any course, including credit and non-credit courses, as part of a current course such as Finance or Capital Markets, or as a self-study program. The Solomon platform works equally well for in-person, hybrid, and online courses. And no matter what kind of course it is, instructors receive access to the Instructor Portal, class slides, quizzes and exams, a custom study schedule, and QwizBang, Solomon’s interactive game platform.

Solomon Exam Prep partners with dozens of colleges and universities to bring the Solomon SIE exam prep program to students across the country. Join institutions such as Pepperdine University, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, University of Delaware, Adelphi University, University of Nebraska-Omaha, Seton Hall University, Ohio Dominican University, Georgetown University, Widener University, and University of Dallas in partnering with Solomon.

To learn more about the ways colleges and universities can partner with Solomon, visit the website or contact Beth Hamilton, Higher Education Development Manager, at beth@solomonexamprep.com or 503-601-0212.

Solomon Exam Prep has helped tens of thousands pass their FINRA, NASAA, MSRB, and NFA licensing exams including the SIE, Series 3, 6, 7, 14, 22, 24, 26, 27, 28, 50, 51, 52, 53, 54, 63, 65, 66, 79, 82, and 99.

Interview: How Pennie Kincade Passed Three Securities Licensing Exams

Do you need to pass the SIE, Series 7, Series 66, or another FINRA or NASAA exam? Hear one student’s experience preparing for and taking her securities exams. Continue reading

There are many career options to choose from in the financial services industry, such as stockbroker, investment banker, financial analyst, or financial advisor. Whether you’re aiming for a job on Wall Street or off, you will probably need to pass a securities licensing exam or two (or three) to be permitted to work in your chosen role. To reach her career goals, Solomon customer Pennie Kincade, Financial Advisor at Raymond James Financial Services, decided to take the FINRA Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) and Series 7, and the NASAA Series 66 exams. Pennie recently shared her experience studying for and passing her exams.

“From passing the exams, I have been able to further my career and truly enjoy coming to work every day. It’s been a privilege to partner with my clients and plan for their retirement.”

Pennie Kincade

Solomon Exam Prep: What led you to take the SIE, Series 7, and Series 66?

Pennie Kincade: When I started working in the financial services industry, I found my passion helping individuals and businesses reach their financial goals. I wanted to take this a step further by helping with their long-term goals, wealth management strategies, business succession planning, and retirement planning. With the SIE, Series 7 and 66, now I can follow my dream of assisting clients with wealth management strategies.

Solomon Exam Prep: Out of the exams you passed, which one did you find the most challenging and why?

Pennie Kincade: The Series 7 was the most challenging and the longest exam. It was helpful to have Solomon Exam Prep available to answer my questions and breakdown concepts into simple terms. They gave me confidence to push through and not give up.

Solomon Exam Prep: How did you approach studying for your exams?

Pennie Kincade: When studying for each exam, it was important to read each chapter and take a chapter exam at the end. Regardless of my scores, I continued reading through, taking an exam and then I started taking half exams once or twice a week. The questions I missed, I wrote down and referred back to for review. I reread my notes and reviewed each chapter on sections I scored low in. Once my scores were in the 80s, I moved onto a full exam once a week. Making note cards and writing out the questions I missed were helpful to review later. Two weeks before the exam, I made a sheet with notes to review each day with definitions, formulas or calculations.

Solomon Exam Prep: How did you take the exams – at a testing center or remotely? How was your experience, and do you have any tips to share?  

Pennie Kincade: I completed my exams at the testing center. Before each exam, I would arrive an hour and a half early. During this time, I would have a small snack and drink some water. Then I reviewed my note cards and one page cram sheet. When I was able to write down notes during the exam, I wrote down everything I could remember from my cram sheet since it was fresh in my mind. I found this helpful to refer back to when I was getting a little anxious. It helped me stay focused and maintain confidence.

“It was helpful to have Solomon Exam Prep available to answer my questions and breakdown concepts into simple terms. They gave me confidence to push through and not give up.”

Solomon Exam Prep: Any words of wisdom to help motivate others who are preparing for exams? 

Pennie Kincade: Give yourself enough time to study and know when you need a break. I read my notes out loud, while recording my voice and listened to them on the way to work. The chapters I had a difficult time remembering I would read the section before bed and touch on it the next morning. If I felt I had information overload, I would get up for a snack and take a 15-minute break.  

Solomon Exam Prep: How has passing these exams affected your work and your career?

Pennie Kincade: From passing the exams, I have been able to further my career and truly enjoy coming to work every day. It’s been a privilege to partner with my clients and plan for their retirement.

Visit the Solomon Exam Prep website to explore study materials for 21 different securities licensing exams, including the SIE, Series 7, and Series 66.

Francis Marion University Students Studying for the SIE Exam with Solomon

Solomon Exam Prep’s newest partnership will bring its Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam curriculum to a self-study cohort. Continue reading

Solomon Exam Prep is pleased to announce that students at Francis Marion University in Florence, South Carolina, will shortly begin studying for the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam. Instructor Jan Serrano, PhD., Associate Professor of Finance, will lead the group of students in a self-study course using Solomon’s SIE Total Study Package, providing them with the widest variety of study tools to help them pass the SIE.

Bring the SIE To Your Campus

Interested in how you could incorporate Solomon Exam Prep’s study materials into a course at your college or university? Solomon’s flexible SIE curriculum can be tailored to meet the needs of a variety of classes. Students receive Solomon’s industry-leading online study materials at a discounted educational rate, and instructors benefit from high-touch support and access to the Instructor Portal with its innovative classroom tools and reporting features. And Solomon’s SIE curriculum is perfect for both in-person and online courses.

Solomon Exam Prep partners with dozens of colleges and universities to bring the Solomon SIE exam prep program to students across the country. Join institutions such as the University of Nebraska-Omaha, University of Delaware, Adelphi University, Seton Hall University, Ohio Dominican University, Georgetown University, Widener University, and University of Dallas in partnering with Solomon.

To learn more about the ways colleges and universities can partner with Solomon, visit the website or contact Beth Hamilton, Higher Education Development Manager, at beth@solomonexamprep.com or 503-601-0212.

Solomon Poll: Inflation Expectations for 2022

What are inflation and inflation expectations, and why are they important? Learn what these terms mean and the results of the latest Solomon poll. Continue reading

Can you predict what the economic future of the U.S. will be next month? How about next year? If you’re not sure, Solomon Exam Prep suggests you look at leading indicators, which are economic measures that have been found to anticipate a change in the economy. They are also tested subjects on securities licensing exams such as the FINRA Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam and the NASAA Investment Adviser (Series 65) exam. 
 
One important leading indicator is inflation. So, we asked Solomon LinkedIn followers to predict whether the rate of inflation in 2022 will increase, decrease, or stay the same. According to the poll, a whopping 81% of respondents believe that inflation will increase in 2022. Ten percent predict that inflation will stay the same, and nine percent think it will decrease.  
 
For securities licensing exams, leading indicators are important to understand because they are believed to have predictive power, and therefore, allow economists to see what the economic future may hold. That is why Solomon Exam Prep study guides for the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE), Series 7, Series 65, and Series 66 all discuss inflation. So, what exactly is inflation and why does it occur? 

What is inflation and why does it happen?

Inflation means an increase in the prices of goods and services and a decline in the purchasing power of a currency. It can be understood as a part of business cycles, which are fluctuations in the economy. A business cycle has four phases. The first phase, expansion, is characterized by an increase in economic activity and above-average economic growth. In this phase, the production of goods rises and unemployment falls. Lenders make credit more available because they believe businesses and people will be able to repay their loans. Available credit means lower interest rates, which fuels expansion, resulting in more jobs. 
  
The expansion phase feels good because jobs are plentiful, and wages rise. But a risk of the expansion phase is the possibility of inflation because increasing wages and available credit tend to boost prices.  Inflation can result when demand for goods and services outstrips their supply. This usually occurs near the end of an expansionary phase, when too much money is chasing too few goods. Inflation can occur because of:

    • High consumer confidence in the economy
    • An economy that has reached its production potential
    • Excess money in the economy
    • Increases in wages and other production costs, such as a rise in commodity prices

What does inflation mean for investors?

With rising prices come rising interest rates. For example, if the cost of living is increasing at 5%, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI), investors will be unwilling to purchase a bond paying 4% and lose purchasing power. Lenders will need to raise interest rates to keep up with inflation. 
  
In an inflationary environment, investors may be less inclined to make long-term investments. The possibility that a long-term bond or other long-term investment will not keep up with inflation may drive investors to short-term and variable-rate bonds. Unfortunately, to grow, many businesses, especially capital-intensive companies such as oil and gas refineries, airlines, and telecommunications companies need to borrow for the long-term. As a result, an inflationary environment can reduce business investment and cause an economic downturn.

What are inflation expectations?

To return to the Solomon LinkedIn poll – does it matter what people think will happen with inflation in the future? The short answer is yes, and there’s even a term for this: inflation expectations. Inflation expectations refer to the rate at which people and businesses expect prices to rise in the future. Inflation expectations are important because they can actually affect the real rate of inflation. For example, if everyone expects prices to increase by two percent over the next year, then businesses will likely raise their prices by two percent or more, and workers will want comparable salary increases.  
 
If the Solomon LinkedIn poll results are any indication, inflation expectations for the next year are that prices will increase. Do you agree that 2022 will see a rise in the rate of inflation? Comment below to share your thoughts on the topic. 
 
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