Series 63 vs 66 Exams & Licenses

I work for a firm that requires the S6/7 (I plan to get the 7) and S63, but not the 65/66. I was was wondering if it would be worthwhile for me to do a bit more studying and go for the 66 once I’m already studying for the 63 & the 7.
What would the main advantages be of being S66 licensed over just 7/63?
And is the S66 exam significantly more difficult than the S63 exam?

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Hi @Mass_coffee_louse - great question.

You’ll learn a ton about this when you study for the S63, but the license allows for registration as an agent. This role typically involves working for a broker-dealer and executing securities transactions (e.g., trading stocks, mutual funds, bonds, ETFs, options, etc).

When a person passes the S65 or S66, they become eligible to be registered as an investment adviser representative (IAR). While agents trade securities, IARs provide advice related to securities. This could include being paid to manage client accounts, create investment plans, or recommend specific securities or portfolios.

If you attain the SIE/S7/S63 licenses, you can only register as an agent. If you additionally attain the S66, you can be dual-registered as an agent and IAR simultaneously. This would allow you to give advice AND execute transactions. For example, you create an investment plan for a client, then trade their account to build out the plan.

I hope this helps!


Is there a lot more info on the 66 exam compared to what’s on the 63 exam? And is the additional material harder than what’s on the 63?

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Yes - is the S66 covers significantly more material than the S63. The S63 is essentially all state laws and regulations, while the S66 is that plus products, accounts, economic factors, and suitability.

This blog goes over the content covered will provide more insight into testable concepts on each exam.


Thanks, that’s a helpful visual

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@brandonrith Quick follow-up question: Do you know if the S65/66 is a prerequisite for the CFP exam or certification?

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@Mass_coffee_louse The S65/66 is not a prerequisite for the CFP certification. These are the only applicable prerequisites:

  • A bachelor’s degree (or higher) from an accredited college or university, and
  • At least three years of full-time personal financial planning experience or the equivalent part-time experience (2,000 hours equals one year full-time).