What is Financial Risk Manager (FRM) Certification

By  Niraj Mahto
Updated On
What is Financial Risk Manager (FRM) Certification

Introduction to Financial Risk Management

The Financial Risk Manager (FRM) certification, issued by the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP), stands as a pinnacle for professionals in the field of financial risk management. This credential signifies a deep understanding of risk concepts crucial in today’s financial markets, requiring candidates to clear stringent exams and gain practical experience.

Who is a Financial Risk Manager (FRM)?

FRMs are specialists accredited by GARP, tasked with assessing and mitigating risks across various sectors including banking, insurance, regulatory bodies, and asset management firms. Their expertise lies in safeguarding financial stability through effective risk management strategies.

Key Aspects of the FRM Certification

  • Global Recognition: Acknowledged globally, the FRM certification is a hallmark of proficiency in risk assessment and management.
  • Educational Rigor: Candidates undergo rigorous testing across two exam parts, covering foundational principles, quantitative analysis, financial markets, and risk models.
  • Career Advantages: FRMs enjoy enhanced career prospects, higher earning potential, and professional credibility, distinguishing them in the competitive financial landscape.

Responsibilities of Financial Risk Managers

FRMs play a pivotal role in identifying, analyzing, and mitigating risks such as market fluctuations, credit exposures, operational vulnerabilities, and liquidity challenges. Their strategic insights play a crucial role in guiding firms to avoid financial hazards.

Exam Structure and Content

Financial Risk Manager Exam Topics:

 FRM Part 1:

  • Foundations of risk management (20%)
  • Quantitative analysis (20%)
  • Financial markets and products (30%)
  • Valuation and risk models (30%)

FRM Part 2:

  • Market risk measurement and management (20%)
  • Credit risk measurement and management (20%)
  • Operational risk and resiliency (20%)
  • Liquidity and treasury risk measurement and management (15%)
  • Risk management and investment management (15%)
  • Current issues in financial markets (10%)

Prospects for Jobs in FRM and Industry Demand

The demand for FRMs is robust across industries, with a projected growth rate of 16% from 2022 to 2032. This demand underscores the critical need for skilled professionals capable of navigating complex financial risks in dynamic global environments.

FRM vs. CFA 

One of the most well-known financial designations in the world is the chartered financial analyst (CFA) title. The CFA is regarded as the “gold standard” among financial analysts, while FRM is the “gold standard” among financial risk managers.

While both the CFA and FRM certify professionals in the financial industry, the FRM is more specialized, focusing primarily on managing exposure to a variety of risks. The CFA covers a broad range of subjects, mostly associated with investment management.

Advantages of the FRM Designation 

Earning the FRM certification brings several advantages, including a strong reputation in the risk management industry and a thorough understanding of risk management. This makes FRMs highly valued by employers and colleagues.

Which Is Better, CFA or FRM? 

That largely depends on your career path. FRM are designed primarily for risk-focused managerial roles. In contrast, CFA charter holders are primarily investment management professionals.

Is FRM Tougher Than CFA?

While challenging, the FRM test is not as hard as the CFA exam.The pass rates for FRM Part 1 fall in the range of 40% to 50%; for Part 2, they range between 50% and 60%. CFA exams have historical pass rates for Level 1 and Level 2 generally in the range of 35% to 50%.

How Much Does the FRM Cost? 

First-time FRM candidates must pay a $400 one-time enrollment fee to the FRM.

From there, Part 1 registration is normally $800, and Part 2 registration is another $800. However, early registration allows candidates to receive a discounted pricing of $600 for Part 1 as well as $600 for Part 2. Visit FRM fee structure page for more details.


The FRM certification offers unparalleled opportunities for professionals aspiring to excel in financial risk management. With its comprehensive curriculum, global recognition, and emphasis on practical skills, the FRM prepares individuals to address contemporary challenges in risk management effectively. For those committed to advancing their careers in finance, the FRM certification serves as a definitive mark of proficiency and leadership in mitigating financial risks.

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