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CPA (US) vs. CA (India)

CPA (US) is equivalent to CA (India) with lesser papers and exams. Students can earn the same level of knowledge and credibility by pursuing CPA with fewer exams and lesser studies.

CPA exams are conducted by AICPA (American Institute of Certified Public Accountant) whereas CA exams are conducted by ICAI (Institute of Chartered Accountants of India).

CPA gives broader recognition compared to CA. CPA is recognized in USA, India & around the world compared to CA, which is recognized only in India. With the global presence CPA has more job opportunities compared to CA.

CPA covers US GAAP & IFRS, while CA covers Indian GAAP. The primary motive for developing IFRS by IASB is to develop a single set of high quality, understandable, enforceable and globally accepted financial standards based upon clearly articulated principles. CPA syllabus covers IFRS extensively and gives a very good comparison between US GAAP and IFRS. It also gives guidance as how to convert financial statements from US GAAP to IFRS. CA syllabus has very few insights on IFRS and students had to go through a separate course on IFRS and conversion of financial statements from Indian GAAP to IFRS. With increase in numbers of multinational companies there is a lesser supply of CPAs as required by them. With more demand for CPAs and lesser supply, these companies are forced to train CAs and make them work like CPAs. At the end of the day CA's are doing the same job as CPA, even after studying for 4 years.

Passing percentage of CPA is quite high compared to CA so it is a motivation for the students to approach for the CPA course.

A brief summary of the above mentioned points


American Institute of Certified Public Accountant (AICPA),         


Institute of Chartered Accountant of India (ICAI),


Course Duration 1 year 4-5 years
Accounting Standards US GAAP, IFRS Indian GAAP


RecognitionUS, India& GlobalIndia
Academics 4 Papers, Single-Level Exam 16 Papers, 3-Level Exam
Work-ex 1 Year in Accounting/Finance 3 Years Articleship under CA
Passing% 40-45% approx. 5-6% approx.