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What is a Financial Management Advisor?

By Shannon Philpott
Updated Mar 02, 2024
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A Financial Management Advisor (FMA) is someone who has completed the requirements set by the Canadian Securities Institute (CSI) for this designation within Canada's financial industry. CSI discontinued the designation on 1 December 2008 and replaced it with a new accreditation standard, the Chartered Professional Strategic Wealth® program. Although the Financial Management Advisor designation is no longer offered, CSI has allowed individuals who already had completed the requirements to receive the designation. Like any financial advisor, an accredited Financial Management Advisor acts as a financial planner for companies and individuals, providing financial counseling for a fee, commission or a percentage of assets.

The Financial Management Advisor certification program was based on required coursework and exams sponsored by the CSI. To receive the FMA designation, a financial professional must have completed the coursework with at least a 60 percent score prior to taking the six exams to complete the certification process. The program was similar to the Certified Financial Planner designation, which is available in the United States, Canada and several other countries.

As part of the FMA certification program, each professional had to train for more than 500 hours by taking coursework at institutions of higher education and private education corporations. Courses could be completed in traditional classroom settings or via distance learning programs. All examinations were then proctored by the CSI to finalize certification as a Financial Management Advisor.

After being certified, a Financial Management Advisor could then provide clients with financial counseling and planning. Financial planning might include gathering data, planning financial goals, developing a financial plan and monitoring a client’s progress. A financial planner who holds an FMA designation can consult with clients on estate planning, financial retirement options, asset management, education planning, tax options and risk management.

In certain instances, an advisor might also help a client with clarifying financial status for tax or legal purposes. A registered advisor also helps clients plan for short-term and long-term financial goals while preparing an investment portfolio that meets the needs of families and companies. The advice of a personal financial expert often provides peace of mind for individuals who are facing financial risks.

Additional tasks of a Financial Management Advisor include consulting with clients on regulatory, ethical and legal issues pertaining to finances. At some firms, financial advisors assist with marketing and client retention. Many people seek the advice of experts to ensure a stable financial platform for retirement. In addition, a private company might look to hire a financial advisor to assist employees with savings, estate planning and retirement planning. Financial Management Advisors are also in demand to explain the complexity of investment products and financial options for individuals and private corporations.

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