It is necessary to pass the Series 3 Exam to work in the commodities and futures market. Passing this exam will allow you to be a commodity pool operator, commodity training adviser, an introducing broker or futures commission merchant. The National Futures Association requires you to pass the Series 3 Exam before beginning to work in this field.

Study futures trading theory. This section makes up about 10 percent of the exam score and is made up of around 13 questions.

Become well acquainted with margins, limits and settlements. This section of the exam will be about 12 percent or the exam score and includes approximately 15 questions.

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Learn about customer accounts. This includes orders and analysis of customer accounts.

Study both basic and financial hedging fundamentals and principals. These two sections account for close to 20 percent of the exam score total.

Understand spreads and options. The Spreads section of the exam is the smallest with around three questions. Expect at least six questions on options on the Series 3 Exam.

Comprehend the fundamentals of both general and financial speculation. These sections combine for a total of 16 to 20 questions.

Memorize regulations. The Regulations section of the Series 3 Exam is, by far, the largest section. Expect around 35 questions on industry regulations, accounting for 30 percent of the exam score.


  • Make a study schedule and stick to it. This will increase your chances of passing the Series 3 Exam the first time.
  • Take the test within 120 days of receiving your study materials. This is the recommended industry standard.
  • Make learning the regulations a priority. You must receive at least a 70 percent on this exam to pass and the Regulations section makes up close to half of this score.

Things Needed

  • Series 3 Exam study materials

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