According to the AICPA, the third quarter of 2007 by far had the highest candidate passing rate. BEC was the only exception and it was lower than the 2nd quarter by less than 1%.
The worst time to take the exam? January/February.
The difference between the third quarter passing % and that of the 1st quarter is staggering.
AUD: 6.82% higher
BEC: 3.29% higher
FAR: 8.73% higher
REG: 8.27% higher
Combining this little nugget with a previous post, statistically, you are more likely to find success on the exam if you take two sections during the window of July/August.
This shouldn't tangibly affect anyone's exam prep or test scheduling, but it is somewhat interesting.
Did they say why this is the case? Is it because all the "smart MBA people" get to 150 hours in May and then make their first attempts in July/Aug?
I doubt this is the case.
First of all, "smart MBA people" is an oxymoron. Just kidding to all of you out there with "MBA" after your name in your e-mail signatures.
Second, if they got their 150 hours in May and immediately applied for NTS, they probably wouldn't get it until Mid-June...buy the books and then start taking them in October.
Sorry for being so literal...I think you were joking anyway. :/
It is because most of the CPA exam takers currently work in CPA firms, for which Jan - March is the busiest of times, therefore less time to study.
Mike is dead on. Less people take the exam and those who do, try to cram in sections while working crazy hours. Not going to happen.