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Course Description

Number of Modules: 6  |  Credit Hours: 20

UEC Credits: 2 

Final exam passing grade: 60%

This course explains basic derivatives securities, derivatives markets and the use of options in risk management. Each module teaches concepts through real-life examples so you can understand the role that derivatives plays in managing financial risk and creating synthetic exposures to asset classes. Interactive quizzes have been designed to help you reflect on what you learned and put in practice your knowledge.


Expert advice and in-depth features

NOTE: The modular nature of this program allows different learners to tailor their courses to their needs. You may choose to take one course (for interest, or for a personal need), a series of courses (for career advancement, for example), or a series of modules (for professional certification preparedness in a particular field).

View course objectives

Credit Hours:

This module offers a big picture overview of the derivatives markets along with the main purposes and criticisms of this evolving market which gives birth to innovative structures and where financial engineering finds its expression. The basic characteristics of forward contracts, futures contracts, options (calls and puts), and swaps are discussed and the distinction between exchange-traded and over-the-counter derivatives is explained.

Credit Hours:

This module discusses the basic features of over-the-counter forwards (delivery-settlement and termination alternatives) and their use from dealers and end-users. The most common types of forward structures are described: equity forwards, currency forwards, and bond forwards. Lessons also cover Forward Rate Agreement (FRAs) characteristics and calculations.

Credit Hours:

This module discusses the basic features of exchange-traded futures and their main differences with over-the-counter forwards. The most common underlying assets of futures are described: Treasury bills, Eurodollars, Treasury bonds, stock indices, and currencies. Lessons also cover the role of initial margin, maintenance margin, variation margin, and settlement in futures trading.

Credit Hours:

This module covers basic concepts of call and puts. Distinguishing between American and European options and exchange-traded and over-the-counter options. Understanding the concept of the moneyness of an option, its intrinsic value and option payoff diagrams. Determining the boundaries of various option values and understanding qualitatively how option prices are affected by the exercise price, the time to maturity, interest rates, and volatility. Put-Call parity is discussed thoroughly and its application in identifying trading opportunities.

Credit Hours:

The swap market is one the largest over the counter derivative products that can be linked to a variety of indices, financial instruments or benchmark rates. This module describes the characteristics of swap contracts, their settlement and termination procedures. Payment calculations are described for the most common types of swaps (plain vanilla interest rate swaps, currency swaps, and equity swaps).

Credit Hours:

This module discusses quantitative and graphic coverage of value at expiration and P/L (profit and loss) of buying or selling calls and/or puts thoroughly. Calculations of the maximum profit, maximum loss, and break-even underlying price at expiration are covered. The same graphs and boundaries are derived from a covered call strategy and a protective put strategy. Lessons explain the use of these option strategies and reveal the embedded investment view when implementing these strategies.


Dr. Efi (Efstathia) Pylarinou is a Fintech and Blockchain global influencer and advisor.

She holds a Ph.D. in Finance and is a seasoned Wall Street professional.  She is No.3 influencer in the finance sector and No.1 woman influencer, by Refinitiv Global Social Media 2019. She is included in the Top 14 Women in Finance Influencers 2019 Onalytica, and the 2019 Onalytica Top 100 Wealth Management Influencer list

And in many more rankings.

She is the cofounder and author of Daily Fintech. She has over 184,000+ followers on Linkedin and 7,500 on Twitter.  Her domain focus is on innovations on Digital Wealth Management & Capital Markets.

She is a contributing author of the the 2019 4IR AI Blockchain Fintech IOT book and the 2018 WealthTech book by Wiley. She speaks frequently on Blockchain and Capital markets trends.

She holds a Ph.D. in Finance, an MBA and an undergraduate degree in Mathematics. Her thesis focused on a Chaotic Approach to stock market returns. Efi has worked on Wall Street in the fixed income Sales and Trading operations of three major Wall Street firms. She started at Salomon Brothers in the fixed income derivatives department in researching and marketing structured products. She subsequently moved to Bankers Trust in the Latin American Emerging markets fixed income trading area, and concentrated in modeling Brady bonds and investing in Latin American local fixed income securities. She then moved to SC Cowen to build their local fixed income business. She lived through the derivatives Orange county crisis, the Mexican crisis, as well as the Russian and Asian debt crises of the 90s.

She is a published author of financial books with J. Wiley: (1) An emerging markets fixed income handbook co-authored with Frank Fabozzi (2002), Investing in Emerging Fixed Income Markets; (2) Local fixed income arbitrage, chapter in the Handbook of Emerging Fixed Income and Currency Markets.

Efi has worked as a European marketer for Dalton Investments, an LA-based hedge fund concentrating in Asian and distressed investment opportunities. Additionally, she taught Derivatives and Real Estate Finance at McGill University.

You can connect with her on:

Twitter: @efipm 

Youtube channel:;

Facebook business page

Course instructors and the program director are available to you at all times via email to answer your questions about course contents and how to organize your study time wisely to get the best out of the study materials. KnowledgeOne also provides technical support via email and phone:

Tel.: (514) 989-1616

“I loved having the possibility to study whenever and wherever I could; topics were very well explained by the instructor; plus I had the possibility to take the tests many times.”

John H.

“Very easy to use – Very good instructor – Notes easy to use and follow.

Margaret N.

CFA Institute does not endorse, promote, or warrant the accuracy or quality of the products or services offered by KnowledgeOne Inc. CFA Institute, CFA® and Chartered Financial Analyst® are trademarks owned by CFA Institute.