Did you recently receive your Series 7 license? Or maybe you’re ready to take the next step in your career?

According to the Bureau of Labor and Employment, employment of securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents is projected to grow 7 percent from 2022 to 2032. This growth rate is faster than the average for all occupations. And this means one thing: big bucks and job security for those who enter the field.

Considering this growth, becoming a securities, commodities, or financial services sales agent offers significant career opportunities and stability. Upgrading to General Securities Sales Supervisor is even more lucrative.

But first, you’ll need to pass the Series 9 exam.

The good news here is that this exam has a decent pass rate, with around 7 out of 10 acing it on the first try. But these seven usually have one thing in common. They have invested in some of the best Series 9 Study Guides on the market.

Our team at AIS has dedicated countless hours to meticulously analyzing the vast array of Series 9 study materials available on the market. Leveraging their expertise and firsthand experience, they’ve assessed each guide’s effectiveness, depth of content, and user-friendliness.

This rigorous evaluation process ensures that our recommendations for the Series 9 exam are not only based on factual accuracy but also on the real-world applicability of the study materials. As a result, the list we’ve curated represents the best of the best, designed to give candidates the highest chance of success in their Series 9 exam.

1. Securities Institute of America Series 9 Study Guide

Securities Institute of America Courses

The Securities Institute of America (SIA) offers a comprehensive study guide designed specifically for those preparing for the Series 9 exam. With a focus on affordability without compromising on quality, SIA provides a blend of live instructor-led content, online resources, and a money-back guarantee, ensuring candidates get value for their investment.

Course Details

SIA’s Series 9 exam preparation course is both affordable and of high quality. The recently updated program offers:

  • Six months of full access to online exams.
  • A 218-page study guide textbook that delves deep into the topics covered in the Series 9 exam (Check it out here).
  • 750 test questions to help candidates practice and familiarize themselves with the exam format.
  • 4 hours of online video classes that provide visual and auditory learners with an additional resource.

For those who prefer a more streamlined approach, SIA offers the flexibility to purchase only the Series 9 exam textbook for under $100. This customization ensures candidates only pay for what they truly need.

Furthermore, SIA’s collaboration with other reputable education companies ensures the production of high-quality, reliable, and informative study materials tailored for options traders. This partnership enhances the learning experience, making complex concepts more digestible and terminology clearer.

Many users have praised the realistic testing conditions provided by SIA’s sample questions. These questions, combined with instructional lectures and text passages, not only evaluate a candidate’s knowledge but also bolster confidence in test-taking abilities. The Greenlight Guarantee is a testament to SIA’s confidence in their materials, offering a full refund if a candidate doesn’t pass the actual exam after attempting their simulated Greenlight Exam.

User Experiences:

Having spent years in the financial industry and reviewing countless exam preparation materials, I can confidently say that the Securities Institute of America’s Series 9 Study Guide stands out. The comprehensive nature of the materials, combined with the innovative ‘study on the go’ mobile learning library, showcases SIA’s dedication to modern, flexible learning. Their collaboration with other reputable education companies ensures that the content is not only accurate but also relevant to current industry standards. The Greenlight money-back guarantee further emphasizes their commitment to student success. For anyone serious about passing the Series 9 exam, SIA’s offerings are a worthy investment. – User Review

SIA Series 9 Pros & Cons

  • Greenlight Pass Guarantee: One of the standout features of SIA’s Series 9 Study Guide is the Greenlight Pass Guarantee. This guarantee underscores the confidence SIA has in its materials and training approach. If a student doesn’t pass the actual exam after attempting their simulated Greenlight Exam, they are eligible for a full refund.
  • Affordability with Customization: SIA understands that every student’s needs are unique. Their flexible pricing model allows candidates to customize their package, ensuring they only pay for the resources they need. Whether it’s the full package with online exams, video classes, and the study guide textbook or just the textbook, there’s an option for every budget.
  • Comprehensive Materials in Multiple Formats: With materials available in both physical and eBook formats, students can choose the mode of study that suits them best. This flexibility ensures that whether you’re on the go or prefer a traditional study approach, SIA has got you covered.
  • Expertly Crafted Content: SIA prides itself on being the author of industry-leading exam review guides. Their collaboration with other reputable education companies ensures that the study materials are of the highest quality, reliable, and informative. This partnership enhances the learning experience, making complex concepts more digestible.
  • Interactive Mobile Learning: Embracing the digital age, SIA offers an innovative “study on the go” solution. Their mobile library allows students to interact dynamically with all textbooks via any mobile device, facilitating social learning and interaction between students.

Bottom Line: The Securities Institute of America’s Series 9 Study Guide offers a blend of quality, flexibility, and innovation. With its Greenlight guarantee, diverse learning formats, and expert content, it stands out as a top choice for those serious about acing the Series 9 exam. Plus, it’s super affordable!”


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2. Securities Training Corporation Series 9 Study Materials

Securities Training Corporation FINRA

Established in 1969, the Securities Training Corporation (STC) has cemented its reputation as a leading resource for securities exam preparation. With a legacy of producing top-notch Series 9 study materials, STC has been the go-to choice for numerous corporations training their workforce. Their impressive student pass rates and the subsequent employment success in esteemed financial institutions speak volumes about the quality of their offerings.

STC Has Been The Go-To in Securities Training for Over 50 years

Course Details

STC prides itself on offering materials crafted by industry experts, ensuring candidates are well-equipped to pass their exams on the first attempt. While they recommend enrolling in their full classes for optimal results, STC understands the diverse learning needs of students and offers several tailored options:

  • Series 9 Standard ($200+): Ideal for independent learners, this package offers six months of access to both online and print study manuals, course updates, and essential facts for General Securities Sales Supervisors. And if you ever find yourself in a bind, the Instructor Hotline is just a call away.

  • Series 9 Premier ($300+): A step up from the Standard, the Premier package includes everything from the Standard option and adds on-demand lectures, flashcards, and progress exams. The highlight is the Green Light exam, a part of STC’s Pass Guarantee, mirroring the assurance provided by the Securities Institute of America.

  • Series 9 Premier Plus Package ($350): For those who thrive in a classroom setting or need additional guidance, this package is the pinnacle of STC’s offerings. It includes access to in-person classes (subject to location availability) and identical virtual sessions. Whether you prefer the immediacy of live sessions or the flexibility of recorded ones, this package caters to both preferences.

What Are People Saying About STC?

“I skimmed the STC book, watched all of the on-demand lectures, and then just hammered practice tests over and over. The practice tests were huge for my learning process and understanding of the topics. Whether you get a question right or wrong, I would recommend reading the explanation regardless and making sure you understand whatever topic they’re addressing to its full extent.” Reddit User babyduck27131

“I had similar scores with STC and found that the GL was harder than the actual exam. I also had cold feet going into it, but I think the mock exams are a good indication; if you are in the mid-70s, you should be good to go.” Reddit User cle81

I took the 9 on Friday and passed. The week before, I took greenlights a and b and got 93 and 97, respectively. I was never able to get higher than an 80 on a perfect pass. Unfortunately, the 9 doesn’t give you a score, but I can say all the math problems are very close to STC.” Reddit User Gleece_Lamanna

Certainly! Here’s a firsthand review of “Securities Training Corporation Series 9 Study Materials” based on the provided link:

Firsthand Review: Securities Training Corporation Series 9 Study Materials

Having had the opportunity to delve deep into the offerings of the Securities Training Corporation (STC) for the Series 9 exam, we were genuinely impressed. From the moment we accessed their materials, it was evident that STC has invested significantly in creating a comprehensive and user-friendly study platform.

Interface & Usability: The online platform is intuitive, with a clean design that makes navigation a breeze. The materials are organized logically, ensuring that even those new to securities exams can easily find their way around.

Content Depth: The depth of content is remarkable. The study manuals are thorough, covering every aspect of the Series 9 exam. The language used is clear, making complex topics more digestible. The real-time course updates ensure that students are always studying the most current material, which is a significant advantage in the ever-evolving world of securities.

Interactive Learning: The on-demand lectures are a standout feature. Presented by industry experts, these lectures not only cover the syllabus but also offer insights and tips that can be invaluable during the actual exam. The ability to pause, rewind, and re-watch ensures that learners can grasp concepts at their own pace.

Practice & Feedback: The practice exams and quizzes are designed to closely mimic the actual Series 9 exam closely. After taking several of these, we felt more confident in our preparedness. The immediate feedback on quiz performance is a great touch, allowing for targeted revision.

Instructor Support: The Instructor Hotline is a game-changer. Having the ability to reach out and get clarifications directly from course creators and experts adds an extra layer of support that can make all the difference for students.

STC Series 9 Pros & Cons

  • Robust Tech Support: STC’s technical support ensures that students have a smooth and uninterrupted learning experience, addressing any technical glitches or platform-related queries promptly.
  • Flexible Learning Options: STC’s diverse packages cater to all types of learners. Whether you prefer studying independently with online materials, enjoy the structure of on-demand lectures, or thrive in live classroom settings, STC has an option tailored for you.
  • Decades of Experience: With over 50 years in the industry, STC brings a wealth of experience to their materials, ensuring they are both comprehensive and up-to-date with industry standards.
  • Comprehensive Test Questions and Practice Exams: STC’s test questions and practice exams are meticulously crafted, reflecting the most up-to-date content tested. These tools not only evaluate knowledge but also help students familiarize themselves with the exam format, boosting their confidence.

  • Additional Costs for Premium Features: While the base package is reasonably priced, students might find themselves paying significantly more for premium features like on-demand lectures and in-person classes.

Bottom Line: With decades of expertise, STC’s Series 9 Study Materials offer top-notch test questions and flexible learning options. While the price variability and location-based classes might be a concern for some, the overall quality and comprehensive resources make STC a leading choice for Series 9 exam preparation

3. Kaplan Series 9 Study Guide

Kaplan Financial Courses

Kaplan Financial Education, a renowned name in higher education, offers a range of Series 9 prep programs tailored to different learning needs. With a legacy that spans decades, Kaplan’s materials are designed to provide comprehensive insights and tools to ensure success in the Series 9 exam.

Course Details:
Kaplan’s Series 9 offerings are segmented into three distinct packages:

  1. Basic Self-Study Package: Ideal for self-learners, this package offers a robust foundation. Unique features include a customizable Study Calendar based on your test date and a License Exam Manual that provides a comprehensive outline of the exam. Custom quizzes allow targeted learning, and full Practice Exams help gauge progress.
  2. Series 9 Premium Package: This package offers a blend of self-study and instructor-led resources. It includes everything from the Basic package, plus on-demand lectures, flashcards, progress exams, and the Green Light exam as part of Kaplan’s Pass Guarantee.
  3. Series 9 Premier Plus Package: For those seeking a traditional classroom experience, this package offers in-person classes (availability varies by location) and identical virtual sessions. It encompasses all the features of the Premium package.

User Experiences:

  • “I passed months ago using Knopman marks. Really good. The Qbank is the same as Kaplan, so if you want something more affordable, Kaplan should be good. Knopman is a bit expensive.” Reddit User
  • “I passed mine earlier this year; I would fully recommend Kaplan! But be advised: you have to use it for it to be useful. I literally took all 3,600 online questions Kaplan offers, then re-took all the questions I got wrong. It was worth it. I probably did a little bit of overkill, but when exam day came, I was in and out like a breeze.” Reddit User MrFrettz

Kaplan Series 9 Pros & Cons

  • Established Reputation: Kaplan Financial Education, a stalwart in the educational sector, ensures students benefit from a legacy of excellence. Their longstanding reputation means that the materials are both reliable and updated to meet current industry standards.
  • Customizable Study Calendar: This unique feature allows students to tailor their study schedule, ensuring a structured approach leading up to the exam date. It aids in time management and ensures that students cover all topics comprehensively.
  • Extensive Question Bank: With access to 3,600 online questions, students can rigorously test their knowledge. This vast repository allows for repeated practice, ensuring mastery over topics and boosting confidence.

  • Price Variability: While Kaplan offers a range of packages, the price difference can be significant. This variability might pose a challenge for students who want comprehensive resources but are on a tight budget.
  • Location-Dependent Classes: The allure of in-person classes is undeniable. However, their availability is tied to specific locations might be a hindrance for students residing in areas without these classes, limiting their learning options.

Bottom Line: The best reason to choose this course is name recognition: you’ve likely studied with a Kaplan test prep book for a college course, so it’s a name you can trust. However, it’s really only worth getting their highest-priced Premium package, which still doesn’t have as good of a pass rate when compared to the more affordable Securities Institute of America.


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4. ExamFX Series 9 Study Guide

ExamFX Courses

ExamFX, while not topping our list, still offers a robust online course package for those preparing for the Series 9 exam. Their confidence in their materials is evident, as they promise a first-attempt pass for their students. Their unique guarantee ensures that if you score 80% or higher on their Guarantee Exam but don’t pass the licensing exam, you’ll be fully reimbursed. Additionally, they offer bundled Series 10 study materials at a discount, ensuring continued savings for those pursuing further education.

Course Details:
Upon registration, students gain 90 days of access to an interactive learning portal, which includes online exam simulations. This aids in familiarizing students with the exam format and environment. For those who prefer a more hands-on approach, each package provides access to an online instructor. The goal of these resources is to instill confidence in students and provide a guided study plan, ensuring readiness for a securities career in just three months.

  1. Series 9 Standard: Priced at $199.95, this package is designed for independent learners. It offers six months of access to online and print study manuals, course updates, and essential facts for General Securities Sales Supervisors. Additionally, an Instructor Hotline ensures that students can seek expert guidance when needed.
  2. Series 9 Premier: At just over $300, this package adds on-demand lectures, flashcards, and progress exams to the Standard offering. It also includes the Green Light exam, part of STC’s Pass Guarantee.
  3. Series 9 Premier Plus Package: Priced at $350.00, this package is for those seeking a comprehensive learning experience. It offers in-person classes (subject to location availability) and identical virtual sessions. Students can attend these live for a traditional classroom experience or access the recordings post-session.
ExamFX Securities Exam Study Steps

It’s important to note that if you score 80% or higher on their Guarantee Exam but still fail the licensing exam, you’ll be fully reimbursed for your time. They also help you save money on continuing education by bundling Series 10 study materials for a discount.

User Experiences:
Here’s what some users have shared about ExamFX’s Series 9 study guide offerings:

“The study material was spot on. When taking the state exam, I was not surprised by any questions asked. I found the practice exams especially helpful during final preparations. The software led me to the specific material to study for questions I answered incorrectly. That was a real timesaver. I’m happy I chose to use ExamFX.” Trust Pilot Review by Stephen

“Although there was a lot of information to try and digest in two (2) weeks, the material was direct and the study aids were very useful. The tests throughout the courses helped to emphasize key areas, and the end of the course test, which could be taken as many times as needed, was instrumental in grasping the lessons.” Trust Pilot Review by Ms. Angi

“I have also had a frustrating relationship with the auto-logoff function. I will be in the middle of reviewing a quiz and taking notes on the missed questions, and then randomly get booted and lose out on a bunch of the correct answers to the missed questions. At the very least, there should be a function to review missed questions from past tests or a way to adjust the time it takes to auto-log off.”Trust Pilot Review by Jacob D.

ExamFX Series 9 Pros & Cons

  • Comprehensive Learning Portal: The 90-day access to the interactive portal ensures students have ample resources and simulations to prepare effectively.
  • Focused on Stress-Free Studying: ExamFX’s materials and structured approach are designed to alleviate the anxiety often associated with exam preparation. Their interactive learning portal, combined with the guidance of online instructors, ensures that students can navigate their study journey with ease and confidence, reducing the stress that often comes with preparing for such a significant exam.

  • Short Access Period: The 90-day access to the interactive learning portal might be limiting for some students. While it encourages a focused study approach, this timeframe might not be sufficient for those who prefer to spread out their preparation over a more extended period or need additional time to revisit topics.
  • Auto Logoff Issues: Some users have reported frustrations with the platform’s auto logoff function. While in the midst of reviewing quiz results and taking notes, they’ve been unexpectedly logged out, losing access to the correct answers for missed questions. The absence of a feature to review missed questions from past tests or adjust the auto-logoff timer further compounds this issue.
  • Issues with Live Classes: Based on an actual user review, while the coursework and practice tests were found to be beneficial, the live classes left much to be desired. The instructor was reportedly inflexible and didn’t allocate sufficient time to cover the materials thoroughly. Instead of fostering a conducive learning environment, the class felt more like a looming deadline, detracting from the overall learning experience.

Bottom Line: While ExamFX’s Series 9 Study Guide offers valuable coursework and effective practice tests that have aided many in passing their licensing exams, it’s essential to approach with caution, especially if you’re considering the live classes. Some users have found the live instruction lacking in flexibility and comprehensive coverage. However, for those who can navigate these challenges or prioritize self-study, the platform still holds potential as a preparatory tool.


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5. Knopman Marks Financial Training Series 9 Exam Preparation

KnopmanMarks Study Materials

Knopman Marks has established itself as a leading name in financial exam preparation. Their Series 9 prep program is meticulously designed to provide students with the tools and knowledge they need to succeed in the Series 9 exam. With a combination of expert guidance and comprehensive resources, Knopman Marks emphasizes a successful first-attempt pass for its enrollees.

Course Details:
The Series 9 Exam Prep Course from Knopman Marks, priced at $410, offers a holistic approach to exam preparation. Enrollees receive:

  • Over 2 hours of video lectures.
  • Access to the Training Center, a centralized digital hub filled with Knopman Marks’ proprietary study guides, videos, and more.
  • A textbook and an E-book.
  • Downloadable supplements to reinforce understanding.
  • An iOS mobile app allows students to study on the go.
  • An extensive online question bank to challenge and test knowledge.
  • Dedicated support from the Client Success Team for any course-related queries.

A standout feature is the customizable Study Calendar, which helps students structure their study plan based on their test date. The License Exam Manual offers a detailed outline of the exam, ensuring students are well-prepared for what lies ahead.

FINRA Series EXAM Study Tips - Art of Answering Questions

If that sounds interesting to you, take a virtual visit to the Training Center on Knopman’s website. Their online guided tour lets you see firsthand what your course materials, video lectures, and supplements will look like.

Once you’ve registered, Knopman lets you create action plans so you can stay focused on the task at hand and track your progress. They also provide tons of follow-up lessons to your inbox, like pop quizzes and supplementary information for certain lessons. Many companies use Knopman Marks and as one Reddit User explained,

“At our firm, we use Knopman. They provide amazing customer support. Including 15-minute calls with instructors, unlimited. They are more expensive than Kaplan, but Knopman gives a year of access to their study material.”

Knopman Marks Series 9 Pros & Cons

  • Holistic Study Approach: Knopman Marks doesn’t just provide materials; they offer a comprehensive learning experience. Their blend of video lectures, textbooks, and an extensive online question bank ensures that students are not only well-informed but also engaged. This multifaceted approach caters to different learning styles, ensuring that every student can find a method that resonates with them.
  • Customizable Study Calendar: In the world of exam preparation, structure can be a game-changer. Knopman Marks recognizes this and offers a customizable study calendar. This feature allows students to pace their studies based on their personal schedules and test dates, ensuring that they’re neither overwhelmed nor underprepared. It’s a tool that brings organization to the often chaotic world of exam prep.

  • Pricing: While Knopman Marks offers a wealth of resources and tools, the price point might be a barrier for some. Given the financial constraints many students face, the cost of the course, despite its comprehensive offerings, could be a significant consideration.
  • Higher Cost for Kaplan Qbank Access: While Knopman Marks utilizes the Kaplan Qbank for their question bank, they charge a premium for access. This means students might end up paying more for a resource that is essentially from another provider, which could be accessed at a lower cost directly from Kaplan.
  • Issues with App Functionality: Some users have reported glitches with the Training Center app. Specifically, there have been complaints about the auto-logoff function disrupting study sessions, difficulties in downloading classes, and inconsistencies in video lessons. One user mentioned that the app’s structure for their Series course was problematic, with lessons being duplicated or misplaced. Such technical issues can hinder the study experience and disrupt the flow of preparation.

Bottom Line: While Knopman Marks brings a reputable name to the table in securities exam preparation, the numerous technical glitches and inconsistencies in their mobile app can be a significant hindrance for students. The higher cost for accessing Kaplan’s Qbank, coupled with the reported app issues, makes it a less-than-ideal choice for those seeking a seamless and value-for-money preparation experience. However, for those who can navigate these challenges, there’s still potential to benefit from their comprehensive content.

Series 9 Study Guide FAQs

Still not ready to get started? Check out these quick answers to commonly asked questions and start hitting those books ASAP!

How Many Hours Should I Study for the Series 9 Exam?

Most programs recommend anywhere from 20 to 50 hours of studying to effectively prepare for the Series 9 exam. This can be stretched out over six months or condensed to an accelerated three-month schedule, but it’s not a good idea to pursue a longer or shorter study period outside of this range.

What is the Pass Rate for the Series 9 Exam?

According to data gathered and shared by ExamFX, the current pass rate for the FINRA Series 9 exam is 74%. You’ll notice many of the best Series 9 study guides offer higher pass rates for their students; this discrepancy can be explained by the large number of students attempting this exam without the help of a test prep course.

How Difficult is the Series 9 Exam?

This test lasts an hour and a half and requires a score of 70% or higher to pass the exam. Among other FINRA courses, this is comparatively easier than normal—especially since it’s essentially half of a 2-part general securities sales supervisor exam, with Series 10 being the other half. However, it still requires advanced knowledge of general securities trading, so don’t expect it to be a walk in the park!

Final Thoughts

At AIS, we recognize the dynamic nature of the financial industry and the importance of staying current. Our commitment goes beyond just providing information; we pledge to ensure that the content we offer remains up-to-date, relevant, and in line with the latest industry standards and changes. This article was last updated in 2024, and our team continuously monitors developments, revisits our materials, and makes necessary updates to guarantee that you always have access to the most accurate and timely information. Your trust in our content is paramount, and we’re dedicated to upholding that trust by ensuring its accuracy and relevance.

Kenneth W. Boyd is a former Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and the author of several of the popular "For Dummies" books published by John Wiley & Sons including 'CPA Exam for Dummies' and 'Cost Accounting for Dummies'.

Ken has gained a wealth of business experience through his previous employment as a CPA, Auditor, Tax Preparer and College Professor. Today, Ken continues to use those finely tuned skills to educate students as a professional writer and teacher.