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Series 16 – Supervisory Analysts Exam

The Series 16 exam — the Supervisory Analysts Qualification Exam (SA) — assesses the competency of an entry-level principal to perform their job as a supervisory analyst.

The exam measures the degree to which each candidate possesses the knowledge needed to perform the critical functions of a supervisory analyst, including the rules and statutory provisions applicable to the preparation and approval of research reports.

For more information about the Series 16 exam, refer to FINRA Rule 1210 and FINRA Rule 1220(a)(14).

COVID-19 Guidance on FINRA-Administered Exams

FINRA and Prometric take the health and well-being of our community as a top priority. In response to the recent guidance from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) related to the growing concerns about the Coronavirus (COVID-19), Prometric is closing its testing centers in the United States and Canada for a period of 30 days, starting March 18, 2020. Candidates who have an existing appointment will receive an email from Prometric with instructions on how to reschedule their appointment to a future date; rescheduling fees will not be applied. To change an existing appointment scheduled over 30 days (April 16 or later) or to schedule a new appointment, please access the Prometric website.

Additionally, FINRA is aware of the challenges that COVID-19 is presenting for our candidates who want to take exams. FINRA will extend all enrollment windows that are currently open and scheduled to expire by the end of May. Each FINRA-administered exam enrollment end date will be extended through the same end date of May 31, 2020. 

Please visit FINRA’s COVID-19 / Coronavirus page for complete updates and guidance.

 


Content Outline

The Series 16 Content Outline provides a comprehensive guide to the range of topics covered on the exam, as well as the knowledge required. The outline is comprised of the four major job functions of a supervisory analyst in two parts: Regulations (Series 161) and Valuation of Securities (Series 162), and their corresponding job functions. The table below lists the allocation of exam items for each major job function.

Major Job Functions
Part 1: Series 161
Number of
Exam Items
(F1) Review and approve research analysts’ communications to ensure
compliance with applicable SEC and FINRA rules and regulations, and firm
policies and procedures
34
(F2) Serve as liaison between the Research Department and other internal
and external parties
16
TOTAL 50
Major Job Functions
Part 2: Series 162
Number of
Exam Items
(F1) Review the content of the report to assess the accuracy, consistency,
and sources of data and calculations included in the report
16
(F2) Review the content of the report to ensure a reasonable basis exists
for the analyst’s conclusions (e.g., price targets, recommendations, ratings,
estimates, and valuation parameters)
34
TOTAL 50

Eligibility

Candidates must be associated with and sponsored by a FINRA member firm or other applicable self-regulatory organization (SRO) member firm to be eligible to take FINRA principal-level qualification exams. For more information on registration requirements, refer to FINRA Rule 1210.

The Series 16 does not have a corequisite exam.

For more information on the registration process, see Register a New Candidate


Permitted Activities

A supervisory analyst is qualified to prepare, review and approve:

  • Research reports on debt and equity securities
  • Discussion of broad-based indices
  • Commentaries on economic, political or market conditions
  • Technical analysis of the demand and supply for a sector, index or industry based on trading volume and price
  • Statistical summaries of multiple companies’ financial data, including listings of current ratings
  • Recommendations for increasing or decreasing holdings in particular industries or sectors
  • Notices of ratings or price target changes, provided certain conditions are met
  • Other research that does not meet the definition of research report under FINRA Rule 2241, provided that the supervisory analyst has technical expertise in the particular product area and any additional product-specific registrations that may be required