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Series 28 – Introducing Broker-Dealer Financial and Operations Principal Exam

Beginning June 9, 2023, candidates will need an approved accommodation to schedule an online appointment for an NFA or FINRA exam (other than the SIE). Online appointments scheduled to be taken after Sept. 9, 2023, will be canceled if the candidate does not have an approved accommodation. 

Learn more in the How to Schedule an Appointment to Take Exams Online (Remotely) section of the Schedule an Exam page.


The Series 28 exam — the Introducing Broker-Dealer Financial and Operations Principal Qualification Exam (FI) — assesses the competency of an entry-level principal to perform their job as a financial and operations principal in an introducing broker-dealer that does not carry customer accounts or hold customer funds or securities. 

The exam measures the degree to which each candidate possesses the knowledge needed to perform the critical functions of a financial and operations principal, including the financial responsibilities, rules and recordkeeping requirements of broker-dealers. For more information about the Series 28 exam, refer to FINRA Rule 1210 and FINRA Rule 1220(a)(4).

Content Outline

The Series 28 Content Outline provides a comprehensive guide to the range of subjects covered on the exam, as well as the depth of knowledge required. 

The outline is comprised of the four major job functions of an introducing broker-dealer financial and operations principal. The table below lists the allocation of exam items for each major job function:

Major Job Functions Number of Exam Items
(F1) Financial Reporting 16
(F2) Operations, General Securities Industry Regulations, and Preservation of Books and Records 30
(F3) Net Capital 31
(F4) Customer Protection, Funding and Cash Management 18


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 28 does not have a corequisite exam.

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

Permitted Activities

Covered supervisory activities include the following:

  • back office operations;
  • preparation and maintenance of a member firm’s books and records; and
  • compliance with financial responsibility rules that apply to fully disclosed broker-dealers that do not hold customer funds and securities and do not carry customer accounts.

Key Questions

1. What is the difference between the Series 27 and Series 28?

The Financial and Operations Principal Exam (Series 27) and the Introducing Broker-Dealer Financial and Operations Principal Exam (Series 28) are required by FINRA for the individual who prepares and maintains the books and records of the member as required under securities industry rules and regulations.

Broker-dealers that have a minimum net capital requirement of $250,000 and municipal securities brokers that have a minimum net capital requirement of $150,000 under SEC Rule 15c3-1 must pass the Series 27 exam.

All other broker-dealers are permitted to take the Series 28 exam, which is an abbreviated version of the Series 27.

[FINRA Registration Rules 1220(a)(4)]