According to the CFP Board, the number of Certified Financial Planner (CFP) professionals crossed 92,000 for the first time in 2021, an increase of 5,723 or 3.8% from the previous year. The board cited an increase in the number of female, black and Hispanic CFP professionals.
According to new data released this week, the number of female CFP professionals increased to 21,504, representing more than 23% of all CFPs, an increase of more than 4% compared to 2020. Women represent 51% of the general population.
The number of black and Hispanic CFP professionals rose to 4,196, a figure nearly four times the growth rate for all other CFP professionals.
CEO Keven Keller said the board was encouraged by the increase in diversity, calling it one of the board’s “main strategic priorities”.
“While we are proud of our growth, we have a lot of work ahead of us as we take initiatives to further strengthen the talent pipeline for years to come,” he said.
Although the 2021 numbers for Black and Hispanic professionals indicate an increase of 13.8% over 2020, these groups still represent a small portion of CFP as a whole. According to the latest numbers, Black CFPs make up 1.8% of all CFPs (and 1,652 professionals overall), while Hispanic CFPs make up 2.7% (2,499), and biracial Black and Hispanic CFPs represent 0.1% (45).
If you look at the general population, 14.2% identify as Black or African American and 18.4% as Hispanic or Latino.
Kamilla Elliott recently took over as the board’s 2022 chair, becoming the first black woman to fill that role, and the board continues to run a number of scholarship programs through its Financial Planning Center, including programs to promote diversity in the industry. There are several programs aimed at
The challenge of diversifying the CFP professional population reflects slow progress in industry diversity in general; According to a recent analysis by Cerulli Associates, only 18% of consultants in the industry were women as of 2019, up 0.8% from the previous year. Additionally, Cerulli found that only 2.9% of counselors identified as Black or African American, while 5.1% identified as Hispanic or Latino, and 4.3% identified as Asian.
The Board also announced that going forward, it would report racial and ethnic diversity data for CFP professionals on a monthly basis, and would make changes to the categories reported; They would include American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian or Pacific Islander, Black or African American, Hispanic or Latino, White, multi-ethnic or other.