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What are the Series 7 & SIE Exams and how do you pass them?

Updated: Jul 6

These two exams can be a nuisance to your career in the financial industry. Initiated, monitored and certified by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), you must pass these two exams in coincidence in order to work as a broker dealer in the financial industry. You cannot have one or the other, you must pass both.

man and woman studying for the SIE and Series 7 (S7) FINRA exams.
Taking the SIE & Series 7 FINRA Exams.

What is the SIE Exam?

The Securities Industry Essentials Exam (SIE) is like the... "baby sister" of the Series 7 exam. The SIE covers the basics and fundamentals to the industry of finance... and economics. It goes over the framework to industry regulators, authorities, compliance, general products & accounts with clients/customers and a few basic strategies that will be expounded upon when taking financial industry specific exams like the Series 7. Hence, why these two exams are corequisites if you would like to be a broker dealer. And let me tell you, these fields can be very lucrative. If you have the right mindset.

You'll need an active FINRA Account to take the exam.

What is the Series 7(S7) Exam?

Man knowledgeable about the Series 7 (S7) FINRA exam.
Series 7 (S7) FINRA is the "Godfather".

The Series 7 is like the "Godfather" of all the financial exams. It covers all of the basics in more general detail and certainly makes sure you know the material. Another name for this exam is the 'General Securities Representative Qualification Exam'. Yet, it doesn't feel very general. Alas, it is. These topics get much more specific when taking other specified industry exams, but the Series 7 covers them all as much as it can without getting "too much into the weeds." Although some suggest not to get too far into the weeds, I actually advise the opposite. We are in an era where we learn the "bare minimum" and expect a long-lasting career. For your benefit, I suggest you give every exam (especially the Series 7) 110%. In the end, you will be better off. "The best ability is availability." If you are flexible and know the material to a greater extent, you have a better chance of extending your career. Also, these topics simply become 2nd nature. You'll be dreaming S7 and won't have to worry about "remembering" topics.

You'll need sponsorship from a FINRA participating firm to take the Series 7. You'll need to have an active FINRA Account & complete Form U4 before taking the exam.

Well, How Do You Pass!?

Let me tell you, I've taken the SIE exam a few times, albeit I was at the beginning stages and buildup of my companies with Jacob Hollingsworth Network Corporation including JHN FINANCE, but the exam is pretty "fair" if you ask me. The questions will usually not be a direct replica or in precise correlation with your studying material, so you really need to know the material "Like the back of your hand." But if you focus on only passing these exams and eliminate all distractions and extracurricular activities you are likely to pass. If you are worried that when you take practice exams, or you've taken the exam, and you slightly pass or get "70s" or "60s", don't fret! The tests are designed to make you think and feel like you don't actually know what you're doing even though you do. The intention is to put you under stress and make you second guess all your hard work and the things you've learned along the way to create a tension that you could potentially be faced with in the industry. That certainly doesn't mean you don't know your stuff. You just need to "lock in", focus, yet stay relaxed all at the same time, and be confident in your abilities. That's why you can only focus on these exams at one time. So, clear your schedule up!

Woman successfully passes the SIE & Series 7 (S7) FINRA Exams.
Passing the SIE & Series 7 (S7) FINRA Exams.

Love What You Do!

This is your future career! You are about to be a financial professional! A rare breed! Can you believe it!? This is it! Enjoy this part of the process. The struggle of getting past these exams is only a part of the greater end of helping people reach their financial goals & dreams. Focus on this concept the entire way through. Be masterful and start to take on the identity of a financial professional. Learn as much as you can along the way and enjoy it as much as possible.

Woman working after passing SIE & Series 7.
SIE & S7 Licensed professional.

JHN FINANCE SIE & S7 Study Program

Get some friends who enjoy finance and are looking to enter the industry as a professional. Or you are already stressing out because your firm is already requiring you to pass these exams in less than a few months. It's much easier with JHN FINANCE. We have fun here, and 2 brains are much better than just one. Videos, quizzes, networking, and conversations on securities topics. What's better?

This is a 5 Star Reviewed Program by already working Industry Financial Professionals from Wells Fargo, Fidelity, Stifel & more.


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