Difference Between CA and CFA


For those desirous of making a career for themselves in the field of commerce, two courses are very popular namely CA and CFA. While CA stands for Chartered Accountant, CFA refers to Chartered Financial Analyst. Though both have similarities belonging to the same stream of commerce, the areas of study in both these courses are quite different. This article attempts to highlight the differences between these two courses to enable students to go for either depending upon their requirements and career opportunities.


A chartered accountant is the person who deals with accounting, taxation, auditing, and evaluation of any business establishment on financial parameters. Though book keepers in companies need not be a chartered accountant, most big organizations today prefer to have CA’s to streamline their financial statements in accordance with the rules and regulations to have smooth passage during audits. Having accurate and up to date accounts is of paramount importance for any company which is why there is a great demand for chartered accountants in the industry.


A chartered financial analyst is a person trained in areas of management accounting, financial management and investment. A CFA is a professional who analyzes and presents summary reports on investments and capital to corporations. Investment is one field where there are umpteen opportunities for a CFA as he can get attractive job options in both private as well as public sector undertakings. CFA’s are in great demand in finance sector especially banks, financial institutions, insurance companies, and large corporations.

While a CA is a prerequisite in all sorts of establishments, CFA’s are more likely to be absorbed in large companies in financial sector. While a CA is mainly concerned with book keeping and auditing, CFA’s have ample job opportunities as their expertise is required by corporations while making financial decisions. Despite the fact that CFA’s get more salary and get absorbed in different financial positions, the demand for CA’s is never going to be low as they are essential for every company, small or big.

A CA competes with other CA’s but a CFA has to compete with other professionals in the field also. This is why a person with additional qualification apart from a CFA degree has better opportunities than a simple CFA. May be it is prudent to do CFA after completing one’s MBA to have an edge over others in the industry.

Difference Between CA and CFA

As far as differences between a CA and a CFA is concerned, while a CA is all the time bothered with the accounts of a company and also sometimes auditing a company, a CFA is a specialized professional who looks after financial decisions and investment policies of big companies.