SIE Exam and Exam Restructuring Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Following are FAQs about the Securities Industry Essentials® (SIE®) Exam and exam restructuring. Click on the links below to view all sections of the FAQs.
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Enrollment and Eligibility
1. How old do I have to be to take the SIE?
You must be 18 years or older to take the SIE.
2. Do I have to be a U.S. citizen to take the SIE?
No, you do not have to be a U.S. citizen to take the exam.
3. Do I have to provide a Social Security number to enroll for the SIE?
You must provide your Social Security number or, if you do not have one, your mother’s maiden name when enrolling. In order to associate with a member firm, the information you provide for your SIE exam must exactly match the information you provide to the broker-dealer to file the U4. Otherwise, your results will not be imported into your CRD record and you may be required to retest. Please see the following for more information on information required to enroll for an exam: Frequently Asked Questions about the Test Enrollment Services System (TESS)™.
4. Do I have to be associated with a broker-dealer to take the SIE?
No, you do not have to have any association with a broker-dealer to take the SIE.
5. Do I still have to be associated with a broker-dealer to take FINRA qualification exams?
Yes, you still must be associated with a broker-dealer to take any qualification exams, such as the General Securities Exam (Series 7) exam.
6. Is it possible to take the SIE and a qualification exam (such as the Series 7) on the same day?
Yes, persons associated with a broker-dealer are permitted to take both the SIE and a qualification exam on the same day. Taking two exams in one day is dependent on finding a seat for both exams at a Prometric testing center. The exams will be treated as separate sessions.
7. If I take the SIE and the Series 7 exam on the same day and I fail the SIE but pass the Series 7, will the Series 7 result count?
Yes. To become a registered representative, you must pass both the SIE and the Series 7 exam. The order in which you pass the exams does not matter as long as you pass both exams. This is the same for the SIE and all other representative-level exams.
8. What is the cost of the SIE exam?
The cost of the SIE exam is $80.
9. What study materials are available for the SIE?
The content outline is available on FINRA.org. While FINRA does not endorse the materials created by any particular vendor, a number of test providers have created materials.
Exam Scoring, Results and Validity
1. What score is needed to pass the SIE?
The passing score for the SIE is 70 (on a scale of 0 to 100). This test score is placed on a common scale with all other candidate test scores for that exam and statistical adjustments are made to the score to account for slight variations in the difficulty that may exist among different sets of exam questions. This method allows for a fair comparison of scores and ensures that every candidate is held to the same passing standard regardless of which set of exam items they received.
2. Is there a waiting period if I fail the SIE?
The waiting period for the SIE is the same as that for FINRA’s other exams. After the first and second failed attempts, there is a 30-day waiting period. After the third failed attempt, there is a 180-day waiting period. For any attempts after the third attempt, there is also a 180-day waiting period between each exam attempt.
3. I am a college student and want to take the SIE while I am in school. If I pass, for how long will the SIE be valid?
The SIE will be valid for four years from the date that you pass the exam. This means that if you become employed by a broker-dealer during the four-year period and need to become registered as a general securities representative, you will not need to take the SIE again. Instead, you will only need to pass the Series 7 exam to become registered. If you register with a broker-dealer and subsequently terminate your registration, then the SIE will be valid for four years from the termination date of the representative-level registration.
1. Does the SIE have a registration category?
The SIE does not have a registration category. Passing the SIE alone does not qualify an individual for registration with FINRA or to engage in securities business.
2. Will I appear in BrokerCheck if I pass the SIE?
No, by only passing the SIE, you will not appear in BrokerCheck.
3. If I am a non-registered fingerprint (NRF) person, will the SIE appear in my Exam History section in CRD?
No, it will not appear in CRD if you are only an NRF. Once your firm files a U4, it will be pulled into your CRD history.
1. I have a Series 17 registration (IE) based on an exam (position) that was retired on October 1, 2018. If I move from my current broker-dealer to another broker-dealer, will I be able to transfer my registration to my new broker-dealer.
Yes, you will be able to move your Series 17 registration to the new broker-dealer, as long as you re-register within two years. However, if you have a break of two or more years between registrations, you will not be able to regain your Series 17 registration and will have to consider one of the other registrations instead. This applies to all retired exams, i.e., Series 11 (AR), Series 37 (CD), Series 38 (CN), Series 42 (OR), Series 62 (CS) and Series 72 (RG).