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CFAs not immune to pay cuts

About 15% of CFAs working as investment professionals had a pay cut related to COVID-19, according to a new survey that says pay remained relatively resilient during the pandemic.

CFA Institute surveyed 4600 investment professionals from its member base across 120 markets in March and April 2021 for its Future of Work in Investment Management report.

It found 15% of the respondents had a COVID-related pay cut, 8% had a pay cut for other reasons, and 6% reported an employment status change in 2020.

The majority's job security and compensation was relatively resilient during the pandemic, CFA Institute said.

"This included variable compensation. Since most markets experienced strong performance aside from a sharp decline in March 2020, this is consistent with investment job security being highly correlated with market performance," it said in the report.

"Globally, those in APAC were most likely to have had a pay reduction due to the pandemic (21% of respondents), and developing markets were more impacted than developed markets. There were not significant differences by gender or years of experience."

The roles whose total compensation was most affected between January 2020 to the April/March survey were investment consultants (34% of respondents affected), compliance analysts or officers (also 34%), economists (33%), and consultants (32%).

Roles where the least respondents reported a decrease in compensation were regulators (0% of the respondents), performance analysts (12%), accountants or auditors (15%) and chief investment officers (19%) and risk managers or analysts (also 19%).

The survey found pay cuts were relatively small and temporary.

Almost half of those affected got a pay cut of 10% or less, 53% expected their pay reduction to not go beyond a year.

However, those with bigger pay cuts were more likely to expect the reduction to last longer.

Read more: CFA Institute