All the traders out there

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by acltm, Feb 27, 2009.

  1. acltm


    Hi all,
    I am a research analyst working for a big multinational bank (working on the US markets) for about a year now; UG from a good tech school. I am considering moving into proprietary trading/ market making. I am quite new in finance and only have a cursory knowledge about trading types and the product/field etc. that would be most interesting/suitable for me. I have the following questions (which might be stupid):

    1. Are only the iBanks and the exchanges involved in market making (generally referred to as trading in an iBank? ) ...where else can one get employed as a market maker?...also i guess flow trading/block trading are also a part of this function...or are they separate careers?

    2. how closely are the prop trading and the market making related? i mean how easy is the move from one to another? if the skill sets required are quite different, then what is the difference?

    3. is it advisable to join a small pure play prop trading firm as opposed to a prop trading role at a big institution (iBank). if no, is it because the mobility into market making would be easier if i already am in an iBank?

    4. if it is not very easy to move from one to the other, then can an MBA help in the transition? if yes, which of these experiences would be better for an MBA? and which of these 2 is easier to join in my getting into one much more difficult than getting into another?

    5. i read somewhere that people had trading roles e.g. with shell as an oil trader and such others (trading not in a trading firm/bank). what exactly are these roles? how do they compare with trading for a trading firm/bank?

    6. how mobile is the career within any of these 2 roles with respect of change of product/ field....e.g. (a)changing from fixed income futures to fixed income options; and (b) changing from fixed income to equities...either market making or prop trading.

    7. Can CFA help in any way for such a transition or further after the transition? (i have been told it wouldn't in general and i think so, but is there any tiny special way it could ?)

    8. Is there is a way to zero in on one particular field/product without actually getting into it ....or is moving through 2-3 areas normal? ( i eliminated a few areas but haven't been able to select one particular area where i want to trade)

    9.Now, i might as well risk saying that i also am open to asset management (investment) in the long run .
    I am just too confused about where i want to get in...maybe i'll not be satisfied if i started and remained in inv. mgmt i want to try the other 2 (or one of them) before that because they seem to be more challenging. So also suggest whether i am thinking right?...i mean starting in prop trading/ mkt making and maybe after a long time moving into inv. mgmt (short time in a very bad case).......and how difficult/viable would that move be?

    Thanks a lot