It Pays to Hold the Highest Standard of Knowledge and Trust in Financial Planning

Mar 16, 2011, 09:00 ET from The American College

CLU®s and ChFC®s earn significantly more than CFP® certificants.

BRYN MAWR, Pa., March 16, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Sole practitioners and senior financial planners holding the Chartered Life Underwriter® (CLU®) and Chartered Financial Consultant® (ChFC®) credentials earn significantly more than Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) certificants according to a new study.

Senior financial planners who hold the CLU® and ChFC® designations earn 28 to 31 percent more, on average, than CFP® certificants according to the 2010-2011 Financial Planning Salary Survey conducted by the Financial Planning Association (FPA).  The median yearly total compensation for CLU® and ChFC® senior financial planning professionals ranges from $130,000 to $133,000 while CFP® designees have a median income of $101,000.  

Data from the FPA earnings study also revealed that the median annual total compensation for CLU® and ChFC® sole practitioners ranges from $83,000 to $89,000 while those with a CFP® certification, on average, only earn $80,000 in total compensation.

"This study demonstrates the impact education has on earnings," said Larry Barton, Ph.D., president and CEO of The American College.  "Consumers recognize and appreciate the significant knowledge that Chartered Financial Consultants®, Chartered Life Underwriters® and Certified Financial Planners™ bring to the financial advisor/client relationship.  Advisors who are serious about career-long learning often pursue multiple credentials.  CFP® designees looking for additional education often complete the requirement for 50% more education as part of earning the advanced ChFC® certification.  Professionals interested in achieving career success and better serving their clients' needs should invest in their future by pursuing these proven credentials."

The Chartered Financial Consultant®, (ChFC®) credential is commonly referred to as "the highest standard of knowledge and trust."  Requiring the completion of nine college-level courses, this designation is the most comprehensive financial planning designation available. More than 48,000 professionals have earned this respected mark.  

The Chartered Life Underwriter® (CLU®) designation is the world's most respected insurance designation.  This prestigious course of study provides financial planning professionals with in-depth knowledge on the risk-management needs of individuals, business owners and professional clients.  The CLU® requires professionals to complete eight courses, and more than 100,000 professionals have earned this respected designation since its creation in 1927. 

Each of these credentials also requires three years of full-time business experience, adherence to a rigorous code of ethics and 30 hours of continuing education credits every two years.  

The American College is the nation's largest non-profit educational institution devoted to financial services.  Holding the highest level of academic accreditation, The College has served as a valued business partner to banks, brokerage firms, insurance companies and others for over 84 years.  The American College's faculty represents some of the financial services industry's foremost thought leaders.  For more information, visit

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, and CFP (with flame logo)® in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP® Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.

SOURCE The American College