CPA and CA are equally tough, but CPA is little easier to pass due to the flexibility in writing the exam and there is no requirement of having prior knowledge of CA, We have seen a lot of chartered accountants not cracking CPA USA as they are not well versed in US tax and US GAAP.
Indian CA and CPA US are professional qualifications however the quality, structure and the duration differs completely, also please note there is no exemptions in any of the subjects as ICAI currently don't have MOU with AICPA
The comparison between Indian CA and CPA USA is given below:
1. Duration: CPA USA takes on an average one year to complete, CA takes 4 years
2. Study pattern: CPA USA is a single level exam comprising of four sections however CA comprises of three levels like CPT, IPCC and final
3. Subjects covered: CPA USA has 4 exam sections while CA has 16 papers divided into groups mentioned above.
4. Articleship: 3 years of internship experience is must for CA however for CPA , there is requirements of one year post qualification experience in order to obtain COP / License
5. Overall Pass Percentage: CPA USA has an average of around 50% of pass percentage for all 4 sections while the result for CA is on an average 4–5%
6. Recognition: India CA is mostly recognized in India and the middle East, while CPA US has job opportunities across the globe not limited to US.
7. Overseas opportunities: CPAs tend to have more overseas opportunities with companies in India than India. CAs as CPAs have an upper edge due to US GAAP content being tested in CPA exam.
8. Members: ICAI on an average have 280000 members whereas AICPA have 450000 members in the world
9. Cost: CPA USA is costly (4 lakhs INR) as exams can be written only in US and Dubai, whereas CA exam (2.5 lakhs including coaching and exams etc for all three levels) can be written in India and thus the cost is on lower side
CA and CPA are great career enhancement for both students as well as professionals.