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What is Exam FM

Exam FM - Financial Mathematics is one of the preliminary exams administered by the Society of Actuaries (SOA). Along with Exam P - Probability, it is one of the first exam students take on the path to becoming a credentialed actuary. The exam also fulfills Exam 2 credit for students credentialing with the Casualty Actuary Society (CAS).

Exam FM tests the candidate's understanding of mathematical concepts related to Time Value of Money, Annuities, Loans, Bonds, and General Cash Flows, Portfolios, and Asset Liability Management.

When Is Exam FM Offered

Exam FM is administered during the following months every year: February, April, June, August, October, and December. Specific dates are listed in the table below.

To register for Exam FM, you will need to visit the SOA website and create an account if you don't already have one. Once you have an account, log in and follow the registration process for the exam. Make sure to register before the deadline, as late registrations are not accepted. Additional information for exam registration can be found in the FAQs.

Registration Deadlines

There are multiple testing windows for exams by computer-based testing (CBT) each year. In a limited/selected number of locations outside the United States where CBT is not available, the exam will be offered by paper and pencil during specified administrations (see details (*) below).

CBT DatesPaper/Pencil Dates*Registration Deadline
February 8-19, 2024*February 8, 2024January 9, 2024
April 2-13, 2024Not AdministeredMarch 5, 2024
June 10-21, 2024*June 10, 2024May 7, 2024
August 7-18, 2024Not AdministeredJuly 9, 2024
October 1-12, 2024*October 1, 2024September 3, 2024
December 2-13, 2024Not AdministeredNovember 5, 2024

How Is Exam FM Scored

The exam consists of 30 multiple-choice questions, administered by CBT or by Paper/Pencil. The exam is 2.5 hours long. Each question has five answer choices identified by the letters A, B, C, D, and E, only one of which is correct.

The exam will also include a few (unspecified number) of pilot questions, as described in the syllabus. Once you complete the exam, the raw score is calculated by summing the number of correct answers, excluding pilot questions. Since there is no penalty for incorrect answers, it is beneficial to provide an answer for every question.

Your raw score is then measured against the pass mark for your exam, and converted to a scale from 0 to 10. The pass mark is defined as the minimum number of correct answers to pass. A score of 6 or higher results in a pass. Recently, the average Exam FM pass mark percentage has been reported as 71%. The pass mark percentage is calculated as the pass mark (whole number) divided by the number of scored questions. Not everyone taking the CBT exam is presented with the same questions, so this percentage can vary depending on the specific set of questions you are given. This document released by the SOA and CAS describes the formulas used to convert raw scores to the 0 to 10 scale.

Assuming a 71% average pass mark percentage, you can expect the following conversions. Note that the table assumes that the floor of (71% * the number of non-pilot questions) is the pass mark.

0 Pilot Questions1 Pilot Question2 or 3 Pilot Questions% of Pass MarkScore
Pass Mark: 21Pass Mark: 20Pass Mark: 19100%6

The Mock Exams feature on The Actuarial Nexus uses a 71% pass mark percentage to score your exam. We do not assume any questions are pilot questions.

When Can I Expect Results

For CBT exams, a preliminary pass/fail will be displayed on the screen at the conclusion of the exam. For Exam FM, students will also receive a pass/fail document via e-mail. Some students have reported not receiving an immediate pass/fail on screen, but receiving a text or e-mail immediately after the exam. In either case, you should have access to your preliminary results shortly after completion of your exam. Although these results are preliminary, it is reasonable to assume that the preliminary pass/fail will match the final pass/fail.

Approximately 8 weeks after your exam sitting, passing candidate names and numbers will be posted on the SOA website. At that point, you will be able to access your 0 to 10 grade.

Additional Information

Please read the syllabus and FAQs carefully as it also includes important information about the exam.