Many students and professionals considering a career in investment banking, equity research, or private equity think about enrolling in a financial and valuation modeling training program.
Prior to 2003, when Wall Street Prep pioneered the Financial Modeling Self Study Program, this type of training was not available outside of a formal investment banking training program. The program became a hit, and since 2003 several other companies have emerged to offer similar programs.
In 2015 and 2020, Corporate Finance Institute and Wall Street Oasis developed comparable programs, respectively.
Selecting a program that is right for you
While all three companies offer multiple products, all three have a version of a “complete” flagship product which includes what typically represents the “core” investment banking financial modeling skill set.
When considering in which financial modeling program to enroll, factors such as price, support, content format, and access to a macro toolkit are all important. But perhaps the most critical factor of all is quality of the content – a financial modeling program is useless if it does not teach material effectively.
In this article, I will try to lay out some of the differences and similarities between the programs and explain why Wall Street Prep remains the best choice.
|Product||Premium Package||FMVA||Elite Package|
|Price||$499 (See deals)||$497||$497|
|What you get||Videos + PDF + Excel Templates + Live Virtual Kickoff Class||Videos + PDF + Excel Templates||Videos + PDF + Excel Templates|
|Primary Content Author||Matan Feldman:
|Can You Download Lessons?||Yes||No||Yes|
|Other Benefits||6-Months Access to Macabacus Excel Add-In||6-Months Access to Pitchbook||12-Months Access to WSO Company Database & Video Library|
|Support||E-mail & Phone||Email & Phone|
|Used at investment banks to train analysts and associates?||Yes||No||No|
|Does company run live training at investment banks?||Yes||No||No|
|Years in business as online trainer||Since 2003||Since 2015||Since 2020|
|Certification available? Details||Yes||Yes||No|
|Does program qualify for CPE Credit?||Yes||Yes||No|
Given the considerations stated above, Wall Street Prep’s program provides the highest quality training out there. Wall Street Prep invests heavily in ensuring that materials reflect current best practices and are taught in a way that is intuitive. Training follows a very clear, step-by-step approach where trainees build models essentially from scratch, starting from a blank excel spreadsheet and working sequentially through a model.
You’ll be learning directly from Matan Feldman, one of Wall Street’s most sought-after trainers of new analyst and associates.
There is no better way to determine which approach works best for you than to actually sample the programs.
WSO provides a few video previews for free to put their best foot forward. (CFI samples require registration). Below we’ve provided comparable WSP videos that allow you to compare teaching approach, the level of complexity of the model (is this a real-life model?) and how concepts are covered.
|View WSO Samples here (scroll downpage).||CFI does not offer samples without email registration.|
Which program(s) do investment banks use to train their analysts and associates?
Investment banks, private equity firms, and top business school programs hire Wall Street Prep to conduct analyst and associate training in-house. This enables our instructors (all former investment bankers who are also involved in the development and refinement of the self-study program) to receive continuous feedback about materials and integrate the latest best practices into the training material. Below we lay out how all three firms compare to one another:
|Partial list of live classroom training:
Investment Banking: Goldman Sachs, RBC, JP Morgan, Lazard, Guggenheim, Centerview Partners, Evercore, Perella Weinberg, William Blair, Harris Williams, Piper Jaffrey
Private Equity: KKR, Carlyle Group, Bain Capital, Summit Partners, Advent, Thoma Bravo, CVC, GTCR, Roark, AEA, CDW, Ares Management
Investment Management and Other Firms: Point72, Blackrock, PIMCO, Eaton Vance, Bloomberg, American Express, the World Bank, KPMG, Deloitte, PWC, T Rowe Price
Academic Institutions: Harvard Business School, Wharton, Stanford, University of Chicago, Columbia, Cornell
Partner Organizations: Girls Who Invest, Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO), CFA Society of NY
|Firms do not hire Corporate Finance Institute for live classroom training to our knowledge.||Firms do not hire Wall Street Oasis for live classroom training to our knowledge.|