Students CPA Program CFE News

The May 2024 CPA CFE is now over. Let’s review this spring’s three-day national accounting exam

CPA PEP program coach and mentor Gevorg Grigoryan, CPA breaks down all three days of this year’s May 2024 common final examination for aspiring accountants

Author: Gevorg Grigoryan
Gevorg Grigoryan, CPA
Gevorg Grigoryan, CPA, is an instructor, mentor and coach to students in the CPA program. Visit Gevorg CPA to learn more and subscribe to Gevorg’s YouTube channel to access CPA program videos.

VANCOUVER – The May 2024 common final examination is over and aspiring chartered professional accountants across Canada are breathing a sigh of relief. Similar to previous years, this CFE was written nationally over a three-day period, with many candidates congratulating one another — and expressing trepidation — on the r/accounting thread on Reddit. 

CFE Day 1 presented the Neptune Point Fisheries (version 1) and KTI (version 2) cases, the former containing four strategic issues and the latter five issues. Managing time effectively and understanding the strategic direction of each issue were crucial for success. Continuing the trend from the past CFEs, this May 2024 exam contained big picture overarching issues and constraints. It was important for writers to consider these big picture items when answering the requirements. Candidates also needed to consider the interrelationship of the issues — which means some recommendations can't be made if others are also recommended — and to integrate the company objectives. 

Known as “marathon day,” CFE Day 2 tested candidates with challenging scenarios under the IFRS GAAP standard. Similar to past exams, non-routine financial reporting issues were tested, such as IAS 7 cash and cash equivalents. In the Assurance role section, a complex floating-rate bond financial instrument issue was presented. The Board of Examiners noted a decline in technical abilities among candidates and thus included new, non-routine topics to address this. Future writers should review these areas to ensure comprehensive preparation. 

Day 3, the “sprint day,” focused on breadth of competencies with three cases. This year included routine financial reporting issues under the ASPE standard. Data analytics were tested across both Day 2 and Day 3, highlighting its growing importance in the accounting field. Most writers described this Day 3 exam as straightforward, yet it required a solid understanding of recent exam cases, as some issues are repeated from past CFEs. 

Congratulations to all candidates for their dedication and hard work in tackling the May 2024 CFE! This exam tested a range of topics and required a strategic approach to time management and issue interrelation. As you move forward on your journey to becoming a chartered professional accountant, take pride in the resilience and determination you have demonstrated. 

Gevorg Grigoryan, CPA, is an instructor, mentor and coach to students in the CPA program. Visit Gevorg CPA to learn more and subscribe to Gevorg’s YouTube channel to access CPA program videos.

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