Associations & Industry Groups

Number Of Certified Financial Planner Professionals Worldwide Tops 192,000

Steady growth despite challenging 2020

NEW YORK, March 4, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Financial Planning Standards Board Ltd. (FPSB), the standards-setting body for the global financial planning profession and owner of the international Certified Financial Planner certification program outside the United States, reported steady growth in the number of CFP professionals worldwide last year, despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. With a net gain of 4,658 CFP professionals, FPSB and its global network of affiliate organizations grew the number of CFP professionals worldwide by 2.5 percent to a total of 192,762, as of 31 December 2020.

Despite the challenges of COVID-19, the number of CFP professionals around the world grew 2.5% in 2020.

Stepping Up

“In 2020, as families faced the impact of job losses and furloughs, forced early retirement and health care challenges, the global financial planning profession stepped up to help people manage their finances and adapt their financial plans,” said Noel Maye, CEO of FPSB. “Through the COVID-19 pandemic, people relied on CFP professionals to help build their emergency savings, reconsider debt strategies, and stay on track with longer-term financial and life goals. At a time when the value of financial planning is more apparent than ever, I’m pleased to see thousands of practitioners join our global community of CFP professionals.”

CFP Board, owner of the longest-running CFP certification program, finished 2020 with 88,726 CFP professionals in the U.S., an increase of 2.7%. FPSB China, with the second largest CFP professional community in the world, ended the year with 23,579 CFP professionals, up 6.9% over the previous year. Rounding out the top four growth markets for CFP professionals were Japan, with a net increase by the Japan Association for Financial Planners of 841 CFP professionals for a year-end count of 23,095, and Planejar, the FPSB Affiliate in Brazil, which increased its number of CFP professionals by 740 to 5,414, for a 15.8% growth rate.

Overall, FPSB Affiliates in Asia experienced the largest growth rate by percentage, led by the Financial Planning Association of Taiwan with a rate of 17.3%, and the Financial Planning Association of Malaysia, with a growth rate of 15.8%.

As part of FPSB’s commitment to promote and grow the financial planning profession and CFP certification program globally, priorities for FPSB and the global FPSB network this year include: conducting global research to identify best practices and future proof the profession; developing and supporting career paths to financial planning professionalism and CFP certification; and increasing public awareness of the value of financial planning and working with a CFP professional.




About FPSB
FPSB manages, develops and operates certification, education and related programs to benefit the global community by establishing, upholding and promoting worldwide professional standards in financial planning. FPSB demonstrates its commitment to excellence with the marks of professional distinction – CFP, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and CFP Logo Mark – which it owns outside the United States. FPSB and the FPSB global network administer CFP and other certification programs in the following 27 territories: Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chinese Taipei, Colombia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, People’s Republic of China, Peru, Republic of Korea, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States. At the end of 2020, there were 192,762 CFP professionals worldwide. For more, visit