The CFA Institute Standards of Professional Conduct read as follows.
A. Knowledge of the Law
Members and Candidates must understand and comply with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations (including the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct) of any government, regulatory organization, licensing agency, or professional association governing their professional activities. In the event of conflict, Members and Candidates must comply with the more strict law, rule, or regulation. Members and Candidates must not knowingly participate or assist in and must dissociate from any violation of such laws, rules, or regulations.
B. Independence and Objectivity
Members and Candidates must use reasonable care and judgment to achieve and maintain independence and objectivity in their professional activities. Members and Candidates must not offer, solicit, or accept any gift, benefit, compensation, or consideration that reasonably could be expected to compromise their own or another’s independence and objectivity.
Members and Candidates must not knowingly make any misrepresentations relating to investment analysis, recommendations, actions, or other professional activities.
Members and Candidates must not engage in any professional conduct
involving dishonesty, fraud, or deceit or commit any act that reflects
adversely on their professional reputation, integrity, or competence.
II. Integrity of Capital Markets
A. Material Nonpublic Information
Members and Candidates who possess material nonpublic information that
could affect the value of an investment must not act or cause others to act
on the information.
B. Market Manipulation
Members and Candidates must not engage in practices that distort prices
or artificially inflate trading volume with the intent to mislead market
III. Duties to Clients
A. Loyalty, Prudence, and Care
Members and Candidates have a duty of loyalty to their clients and must
act with reasonable care and exercise prudent judgment. Members and
Candidates must act for the benefit of their clients and place their clients’
interests before their employer’s or their own interests.
B. Fair Dealing
Members and Candidates must deal fairly and objectively with all clients
when providing investment analysis, making investment recommendations, taking investment action, or engaging in other professional activities.
1 When Members and Candidates are in an advisory relationship with a
client, they must:
a Make a reasonable inquiry into a client’s or prospective client’s investment experience, risk and return objectives, and financial constraints prior to making any investment recommendation or taking investment action and must reassess and update this information regularly.
b Determine that an investment is suitable to the client’s financial situation and consistent with the client’s written objectives, mandates, and constraints before making an investment recommendation or taking investment action.
c Judge the suitability of investments in the context of the client’s total
2 When Members and Candidates are responsible for managing a portfolio
to a specific mandate, strategy, or style, they must make only investment
recommendations or take only investment actions that are consistent
with the stated objectives and constraints of the portfolio.
D. Performance Presentation
When communicating investment performance information, Members and
Candidates must make reasonable efforts to ensure that it is fair, accurate,
E. Preservation of Confidentiality
Members and Candidates must keep information about current, former, and prospective clients confidential unless:
1 The information concerns illegal activities on the part of the client or
2 Disclosure is required by law, or
3 The client or prospective client permits disclosure of the information.
IV. Duties to Employers
In matters related to their employment, Members and Candidates must
act for the benefit of their employer and not deprive their employer of the
advantage of their skills and abilities, divulge confidential information, or
otherwise cause harm to their employer.
B. Additional Compensation Arrangements
Members and Candidates must not accept gifts, benefits, compensation, or
consideration that competes with or might reasonably be expected to create
a conflict of interest with their employer’s interest unless they obtain written consent from all parties involved.
C. Responsibilities of Supervisors
Members and Candidates must make reasonable efforts to ensure that anyone subject to their supervision or authority complies with applicable laws, rules, regulations, and the Code and Standards.
V. Investment Analysis, Recommendations, and Actions
A. Diligence and Reasonable Basis
Members and Candidates must:
1 Exercise diligence, independence, and thoroughness in analyzing investments, making investment recommendations, and taking investment
2 Have a reasonable and adequate basis, supported by appropriate
research and investigation, for any investment analysis, recommendation, or action.
B. Communication with Clients and Prospective Clients
Members and Candidates must:
1 Disclose to clients and prospective clients the basic format and general
principles of the investment processes they use to analyze investments,
select securities, and construct portfolios and must promptly disclose
any changes that might materially affect those processes.
2 Disclose to clients and prospective clients significant limitations and
risks associated with the investment process.
3 Use reasonable judgment in identifying which factors are important to
their investment analyses, recommendations, or actions and include
those factors in communications with clients and prospective clients.
4 Distinguish between fact and opinion in the presentation of investment
analysis and recommendations.
C. Record Retention
Members and Candidates must develop and maintain appropriate records
to support their investment analyses, recommendations, actions, and other
investment-related communications with clients and prospective clients.
VI. Conflicts of Interest
A. Disclosure of Conflicts
Members and Candidates must make full and fair disclosure of all matters
that could reasonably be expected to impair their independence and objectivity or interfere with respective duties to their clients, prospective clients, and employer. Members and Candidates must ensure that such disclosures are prominent, are delivered in plain language, and communicate the relevant information effectively.
B. Priority of Transactions
Investment transactions for clients and employers must have priority over
investment transactions in which a Member or Candidate is the beneficial
C. Referral Fees
Members and Candidates must disclose to their employer, clients, and prospective clients, as appropriate, any compensation, consideration, or benefit received from or paid to others for the recommendation of products or services.
VII. Responsibilities as a CFA Institute Member or CFA Candidate
A. Conduct as Participants in CFA Institute Programs
Members and Candidates must not engage in any conduct that compromises the reputation or integrity of CFA Institute or the CFA designation or the integrity, validity, or security of CFA Institute programs.
B. Reference to CFA Institute, the CFA Designation, and the CFA Program
When referring to CFA Institute, CFA Institute membership, the CFA designation, or candidacy in the CFA Program, Members and Candidates must not misrepresent or exaggerate the meaning or implications of membership in CFA Institute, holding the CFA designation, or candidacy in the CFA Program.