Advice requested for a recent grad

Discussion in 'Prop Firms' started by collegegradny, Mar 29, 2011.

  1. Hi all,

    I've been reading the forums here for a while and I have found these forums to be the best source for information on trading. I finally decided to post because I'm hoping someone could offer me some crucial advice.

    I will graduate from college in May and have been actively looking for jobs. I have wanted to become a trader ever since I started to seriously contemplate career options in high school. I know right now is one of the hardest times in history for finance graduates to land jobs.

    I understand that it is a huge risk for firms to bring on untested traders and allocate them capital to trade. This is evident by the lack of job postings for trading positions without capital contributions; or turn and burn shops who make money even if their traders fail. I'm trying to avoid these firms at all costs, because I ultimately want to be successful in what I do. I don't want a firm who's main concern is to make money through fees. I want to work for a firm who believes in me and is willing to invest in training me and succeeds based on my success, not failure.

    That said, I've been told that prop trading is a dying, over-regulated field. I've been told to avoid it, and to try to get into any other investment related field. I know this is partially true, but I do believe there will always be opportunities for short term arbitrage in the markets, so I am not too worried. What worries me is the lack of opportunities to break into prop trading. I guess I should clarify by saying lack of legitimate opportunities. I feel that if prop trading was still as lucrative as it was before the financial collapse, more firms would be looking to hire and train new traders.

    So basically I'm asking if I should pursue a career in prop trading, and if so how best to go about it. I have applied at two reputable firms that do not require a capital contribution (SMB and Chimera). Are there any other firms that are known for exceptional training and taking a chance on new traders?
    If I can't make it into either of these firms where else could I look in the industry that could eventually get me into trading (I have also been looking for trader assistant jobs). I feel like very few positions could help prepare one for trading besides working with traders.

    I know this is a lot to read, I appreciate any advice anyone has to offer.

  2. Roark


    Do you really need to be at a prop firm? Can't you just open up your own account with IB and go for it? There are a few traders that really trade on ET with real money, and one of them is Robert Weinstein. He posts his daily profit and has a free chat room. Go to to access it. I don't think you need a prop firm to become a successful trader if that's what you really want to do.
  3. has better info for college students/grads, go to forums ---> trading forum. Post your resume, and frankly, they are gonna tell you need an internship, that's what I'm searching for now.
  4. I'm on WSO as well- great site, but the prop trading section is nowhere near elitetrader.
  5. Correct me if Im wrong, but I thought SMB had a 10K "training" fee...

    anyways... for actual prop firms that offer a salary AND split profits like Chimera, they usually look for traders who come out of Ivy league schools, or they already have trading experience.

    Yea putting down capital sucks, but its something you may have to do. If your profitable it won't even matter to you. Then you can show your PnL to those higher firms as proof of your profits.