Preliminary Requirements
If you have a mailing address, two forms of ID and $115, you can take the Series 3 exam. You do not need a brokerage firm to sponsor you, like you might if you decided to take a test to qualify for some other financial services job. You don't even need a high school diploma.

The standards for taking the exam, then, are almost non-existent. Don't assume for a moment, though, that this is an exam for people who couldn't qualify for some other, more prestigious exam.

The Series 3 may be narrower in scope and shorter in testing time than the more widely recognized Series 7 exam – the one that stockbrokers and bond traders take – but that doesn't make it any easier.

You are about to commit a significant amount of time, energy and brain power. You should know what you're about to undertake before proceeding any further

Exam Contents
The exam is broken down into eight topics:

  1. Futures theory and terminology;
  2. Market operations;
  3. Orders and price analysis;
  4. Hedging;
  5. Spreading;
  6. Speculating in futures;
  7. Option hedging, speculating and spreading; and
  8. Regulation.

Of these, regulation is the most important. Not only does it account for 35 of the 120 exam questions, it is graded as a stand-alone test. You have to score 70% correct on the regulation questions in addition to 70% on the others – collectively called "market knowledge" – in order to pass the exam. You could score 100% on the market knowledge but, if you don't get at least 25 correct answers out of the 35 questions devoted to regulation, you fail the entire exam.

The test preparers further break down hedging into two sub-topics:

  1. Basic hedging, basis calculation and hedging commodity futures; and
  2. Hedging financial and monetary futures.

Speculating is similarly divided into:

  1. Speculating in commodity futures and
  2. Speculating in financial and monetary futures.


Information

Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    Tips For Passing The Series 6 Exam

    Find out what you can do during the test to make sure you get a passing score.
  2. Professionals

    Prepare For Your CFA Exams

    Find out how to get yourself ready for these lengthy and often daunting exams.
  3. Investing

    Series 7 Exam Prep: Options

    One of the most challenging topics in the series 7 exam is options. Find out what you need to know before you take the test.
  4. Investing

    What is the Series 66?

    The Series 66 exam is one of two tests required to register as both a securities agent and an investment advisor.
  5. Professionals

    Series 6 Exam Prep: What Is A Security?

    Before you take the series 6, you need to understand what a security is as defined by the exam.
  6. Investing

    How to Ace the CFA Level I Exam

    Prepare to ace the CFA Level 1 exam by studying systematically.
  7. Professionals

    Tips on Passing the CFA Level I on Your First Attempt

    Obtain valuable tips and helpful study instructions that can help you pass the Level 1 Chartered Financial Analyst exam on your first attempt.
  8. Personal Finance

    Pass Your CFA Exams on the First Try

    Become one of the elite who pass these exams by using these simple study methods.
  9. Financial Advisor

    Series 65 Exam Prep: The Investment Advisor

    Before you take the series 65, you need to understand who is an investment advisor as defined by the exam.
  10. Financial Advisor

    CFA Vs. Series 7: Which is Easier

    Find out which is exam is easier: The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exam, or the Series 7 securities exam for registered representatives.
Trading Center