Wall Street Prep

Wall Street Prep (WSP) vs Corporate Finance Institute (CFI)

Comprehensive side-by-side comparison

WSP Self-Study Courses

Wall Street Prep pioneered the Financial Modeling Self Study Program in 2003 for students and professionals pursuing careers in finance. The program is now used widely at the world’s top investment banks, private equity firms and MBA programs (see list).

Since 2003 several other companies have emerged to offer similar programs, including Corporate Finance Institute (CFI) in 2015.

While WSP and CFI offer multiple products, both have a version of a “complete” flagship product which includes what typically represents the “core” investment banking financial modeling skill set.

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.

Wall Street Prep vs Corporate Finance Institute: Full Comparison

Product Premium Package FMVA
Price $499 for lifetime access (See deals) $497 for 1 year
What you get Videos + PDF + Excel Templates Videos + PDF + Excel Templates
Access Lifetime 1 Year
Primary Content Author Matan Feldman:

  • Founder @ Wall Street Prep (est 2003).
  • One of Wall Street’s most sought-after trainers (clients below).
Tim Vipond:

  • Founder @ Corporate Finance Institute (ext. 2017).
  • Does not train in person to our knowledge.
Used by investment banks to formally train analysts and associates? Yes No
Program Structure

Full Comparison

  • 31 Courses
    (6 core + 25 bonus courses)
  • Last Major Update:
  • 24 Courses
    (9 core + 14 bonus courses)
  • Last Major Update: 2019
Can You Download Lessons? Yes No
Other Benefits 6-Months Access to Macabacus Excel Add-In 6-Months Access to Pitchbook
Support E-mail & Phone Email & Phone
Years in business as online trainer Since 2003 Since 2015
Certification available? Details Yes Yes
Does program qualify for CPE Credit? Yes Yes

You’ll be learning directly from Matan Feldman, one of Wall Street’s most sought-after trainers of new analyst and associates.

Course Quality

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.

Course Samples

When considering which financial modeling program to enroll in, 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.

There’s no better way to determine which approach works best for you than to sample the programs.

Below we’ve provided some sample videos videos that will allow you to compare WSP’s vs CFI’s teaching approach, the level of complexity of the model (is this a real-life model?) and how concepts are covered. (CFI does not offer samples without email registration).

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 WSP and CFI compare in this area:

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.
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August 27, 2021 2:19 am

So Informative!


The Wall Street Prep Quicklesson Series

7 Free Financial Modeling Lessons

Get instant access to video lessons taught by experienced investment bankers. Learn financial statement modeling, DCF, M&A, LBO, Comps and Excel shortcuts.