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Fixed Income Certificate (FIC)
(Formerly known as the IFID)

ICMA Executive Education has completely revised and updated its long established premium qualification for the fixed income market and re-launched it as the Fixed Income Certificate (FIC). The certificate, formerly the International Fixed Income and Derivatives (IFID) Programme, which has been the gold standard for finance professionals for almost 40 years, retains its emphasis on developing practical skills for trading, investment and risk management, while introducing a new syllabus that reflects the realities of today’s fixed income markets. The course is designed to give a fixed income professional all the knowledge needed to understand pricing, risk and trading opportunities in these markets.

The classroom programme is delivered as a one week course in locations across Europe. Candidates choosing this option are also given access to the FIC online campus in advance of the course to help them to prepare for the week’s teaching, which is intended as an intensive review of the course material.*

*Candidates who are still within their six month registration period at the time of taking the course have the option to defer taking the exam and instead take it remotely at a local Prometric testing centre. There is no extra charge for this.
The FIC syllabus is organised around three key topic areas, broken down into multiple sub-topics, and concludes with the FIC course exam:
  • Trading the Yield Curve with Cash Market Securities
  • Interest Rate Derivatives
  • Credit Trading

As an intermediate level qualification, the FIC requires that candidates should already have some familiarity with the topics below, although background reading will be provided prior to the start date:
  • Fundamental Numerical Skills
  • Overview of Financial Markets and Participants
  • The Main Fixed Income Securities

Benefits of the classroom-based version:
  • Face-to-face tuition – the course is conducted by highly qualified financial market professionals
  • Networking with peer group – establish business contacts for the future. The classroom based format also offers the unique opportunity to work in study groups with fellow professionals from other institutions, thus enhancing the learning experience.

Programme Recognition

The FIC is included on the UK’s Financial Skills Partnership (FSP) qualifications list for ‘Advising on securities in the wholesale market place’ and ‘Advising on derivatives in the wholesale market place’.

FIC candidates also qualify for 30 credit hours under the guidelines of the CFA Institute’s Continuing Education Programme.

Speakers on the classroom-based Programme include:

David Oakes
David trained as an economist at the London School of Economics and was lecturer in finance at the University of Exeter and Warwick Business School before joining the ICMA Centre at the University of Reading as Director of Academic and Executive Education in 1998. He co-ordinated ICMA Executive Education programmes from 1994-2004. David left the Centre in 2004 to set up Dauphin Financial Training Limited, which specialises in advanced financial markets training to investment banks in New York.

Gail Rolland
Gail has 30 year’s experience in financial markets.  Working initially in trading and sales of major international banks in London and New York, Gail subsequently started her own financial markets training and consultancy firm.  Gail has broad market experience on a global level, but a particular expertise in fixed income and market infrastructure. Gail is the author of Market Players: A Guide to Institutions in the Financial Markets. She has worked with the ICMA since the 1990s and is also the online tutor for the Fixed Income Certificate.

Neil Schofield

Neil is a visiting fellow at the University of Reading and is a freelance training consultant. From 2001 to 2008, he was global head of financial markets training at Barclays Capital in London. He was responsible for the design and delivery of a large number of seminars in a variety of different asset classes to many different audiences.  Previous to that he was a director at Chisholm Roth training in London and has also held positions at Chase Manhattan Bank as well as Security Pacific Hoare Govett (now trading as Bank of America). Neil has over 20 years of experience in financial markets. In 2008, he published his first book “Commodity Derivatives” and his second text “Trading the Fixed Income, Inflation and Credit Markets” was published in 2011. He is currently co-authoring a book on Inflation and a book on Equity Derivatives due to be published in 2016.

Candidates are issued with an electronic version of the FIC workbook, designed to fully prepare them for the intensive classroom sessions. In addition, candidates have access to the FIC online campus, which provides background reading on a number of subjects that candidates may find useful. Sample practice questions are also available, allowing candidates to assess their own progress in the programme.

Detailed Programme

The Fixed Income Certificate (FIC) is a professional training qualification that places strong emphasis on practical skills, based on a thorough understanding of valuation principles and the relationships between the cash and the derivatives markets. The current programme covers the following subjects:

1. Trading the Yield Curve with Cash Market Securities
1.1 Fixed income securities & interest rates
1.2 Monetary policy & the yield curve
1.3 Interest rate risk
1.4 Trading views on the yield curve with cash instruments
1.5 Financial fixed income trades
1.6 Bonds with embedded options
1.7 Inflation-indexed bonds
1.8 Sovereign credit risk & sovereign ratings
1.9 Fixed income market practice & regulation

2. Interest Rate Derivatives
2.1 Short-term interest rate (STIR) futures
2.2 Bond futures
2.3 Interest rate swaps & swap futures
2.4 Interest rate options
2.5 Inflation derivatives
2.6 Counterparty risk in derivatives
2.7 Derivative market practice & regulation

3. Credit Trading
3.1 Credit risk & credit spreads
3.2 Default probability & expected recovery
3.3 Credit analysis & credit ratings
3.4 Securitisation
3.5 Credit default swaps & credit default swaptions
3.6 Credit trading & hedging with single name CDS
3.7 Credit trading with index CDS
3.8 Credit trading with CDS index tranches
3.9 CDS pricing & revaluation

The final examination takes place on the final day of the course*, and consists of a 75 question multiple choice paper. Candidates have three hours to complete the exam and are required to answer a minimum of 45 questions, or 60%, correctly in order to pass.

*Candidates who are still within their six month registration period at the time of taking the course have the option to defer taking the exam and instead take it remotely at a local Prometric testing centre. There is no extra charge for this.
Details of the Next Seminars:


25-31 October 2015


24-30 April 2016


23-29 October 2016



Novotel Barcelona City
Avenida Diagonal 201
08010 Barcelona

LondonICE Education

20-24 June 2016
Registrations will open here shortly

ICE Education
5th Floor Milton Gate
60 Chiswell Street
London EC1Y 4SA
United Kingdom

Registrations will open here shortly, please email education@icmagroup.org to register your interest in attending. Based at ICE Education London offices: IntercontinentalExchange® (NYSE: ICE), is a leading operator of regulated global futures exchanges, clearing houses and over-the-counter (OTC) markets.


£3,000.00 for Members and £3,900.00 for non-members

The FIC is non-residential learning programme, so candidates are responsible for arranging their own travel and accommodation.

The course fee includes all lunches, coffee breaks and training materials. There is a welcome reception on the Sunday evening for the Barcelona course only, that starts at 18:00 local time.

Course materials will be provided to candidates in electronic format prior to the start of programme. Please ensure that you have access to this document during the course by either printing off a copy or by downloading it on your laptop, iPad or tablet.

Payment can be made by secure online credit card or by invoice. Please note that selecting the invoice method will add £50 (administration fee) to the course price.  Multiple candidates from the same company can request one invoice, thus reducing the overall administration fee.

Should you have any queries about the Fixed Income Certificate please contact education@icmagroup.org.

Cancellation charges

Registrations for classroom-based courses are transferable to another person within the same company.

All classroom-based courses are subject to the following cancellation charges:
  • 1-7 calendar days: 50% of the gross course fee
  • Course start date or thereafter: no refund will be given
Refunds will only be processed after the completion of the relevant course and after return of any course material already provided to you. Any such material must be returned undamaged and at your own expense.

Registrations for online courses are non-transferable and non-refundable.

Fixed Income Certificate holders
The full list of candidates who have successfully passed the FIC examination (previously known as the IFID, GCP and AIBD European Seminar) can be found here.

Fredrik Jenestrand

Organisation: Nordea Markets FICC
Job title: Head of Regulatory Strategy and Implementation

Describe what you do on a day to day basis in your job:
My role as Head of Regulatory Strategy and Implementation in Nordea Markets FICC requires a solid understanding of the fixed income market. On a daily basis I interact with senior management, sales and trading staff and customers to explain regulatory impacts on the market and on specific products.

Reasons for taking the course:
I decided to take the ICMA Fixed Income Certificate to fill any gaps in my current understanding of the market and to gain a deeper understanding of traded bonds and derivatives.

Benefits of taking this course:
Even though I had high expectations before attending the course, these were quickly surpassed and I enjoyed a fantastic learning experience. It was extremely beneficial to make new connections from all over the world who operate in the same market.

Yole Fréjacques-Menuet

Organisation: Banque de France
Job title: Portfolio Manager

Describe what you do on a day to day basis in your job:
As a portfolio manager in a central bank, I am responsible for defining and implementing the investment strategy for the reserves portfolios of which I am in charge, as well as the day-to-day portfolio trading. I am also in charge of monitoring financial market developments in order to provide feedback to colleagues and management on specific topics related to the markets I follow.

Reasons for taking the course:

After a few years in the dealing room, I wanted to complete my knowledge about the fixed income markets. I was specifically interested in having a broad knowledge of several topics, such as options and credit analysis, not directly linked to my day-to-day job, but which could offer me a better understanding of financial markets and financial products.

Benefits of taking this course:
I particularly appreciated that the programme placed strong emphasis on developing practical skills and always looked to underline the relationship between cash and derivatives. The combination of theory classes, followed by practical work based on the concepts that had just been studied, was an excellent way to understand and implement new acquisitions. Moreover, it was very interesting to work in such an international atmosphere and meet different people from various professional backgrounds.

Thomas Krabbe Jensen 

Organisation: Danmarks Nationalbank
Job title: Portfolio Manager

Describe what you do on a day to day basis in your job:
I'm part of a team managing the Danish Central Bank’s FX reserve.  My primary focus is on the short money market, but from time to time I take care of other parts of the reserve. In addition, I make ad hoc analysis of the financial markets and write the regular reporting and decision recommendations to the governors.

Reasons for taking the course:

I recently started working as a portfolio manager and the course is part of my training.  We chose the course because it covers the basics in fixed income and at the same time has a very practical approach.  A considerable part of the syllabus consists of examples and exercises and that makes the content very useful in my daily work. In addition, it gives course participants the opportunity to test oneself throughout the course.

Benefits of taking this course:
I got the opportunity to revisit some of the finance theory I learned at university, but in some of the practical areas the course was more thorough. As a result, my basic skills strengthened and I got a better understanding of the relationship between the different markets.



Fixed Income Certficate (FIC)