Careers in the Stock Market

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by Chris Paciello, Apr 24, 2009.

  1. What type of careers are in the Stock Market ...

    -Trader Assistant
    -Junior Trader
    -Stock Broker

    What are some careers that are on the floor?

    Thank you!!
  2. I'm pretty sure bathroom washer, and toilet drainer at the NYSE is a well paid job,

    might not get that much respect, but it is a good job, although sometimes unclean, nothing soap can't fix.
  3. On the floor?

    I see dinosaurs.
  4. Call Ingrid perhaps she can get you back into the Club scene...:D
  5. If you mean on the floor as in the actual NYSE or CME, forget about it. Unless you have a family member or close tie to someone that works in the pits, you won't get hired... This is basically a closed network. On the brighter side, the physical trading floor business is gradually diminishing and is being replaced by electronic markets. Forget about the NYSE and the specialist system... its horribly inefficient and quickly fleeting. If you have enough cash and could capitalize yourself, you can be as a "local" on the CME floor. You would have to lease membership (maybe even buy a seat if you can afford it) and trade your own money... Make markets/try scalping... I do not recommend this road either as a beginner, unless you have a lot of money. You're learning curve in the pits would be much shorter, but much more financially expensive.

    You can try to pursue positions at a "trading floor" of a company. Forget about investment banks unless you have connections. I assume you're relatively new to trading, so I would try "clerk" positions. Trading assistants almost always require experience... at hedge funds salaries start at like 55,000 and go upto 100,000 w/o a bonus. I'm currently pursuing this type of position, but it is very difficult. Demand for trading assistants require that they have extensive computer programming skills and quantitative backgrounds. A MBA is not required though.

    Forget about being a "trader" unless you go the prop route or local on the CME and in both scenarios capitalize yourself. At a legitimate prop firm, you can be a jr. trader (that's what I used to do). 95% of the firms do not pay a salary. First NY and several Chicago firms do. Some firms require that you capitalize yourself (~5,000) somewhat before being accepted as a jr. trader. This industry is very dangerous though, and naive beginners can essentially be scammed for money. I'm not a fan of firms that let you trade remotely (there just your retail broker, providing you leverage. Never pay for training!

    If you like sales and cold calling, you can easily find a job as a stock broker. You would receive a tiny salary and everything would be commissioned based. It's incredibly difficult to get a clientele though... trust me. When I interned at Merrill Lynch several years ago, I sat near aspiring brokers/financial advisers. It's a tough job.

    The trading sector of finance is just one industry. There are other stock market/investment related industries you can pursue... like as a analyst. Unless you have a MBA, received your Bachelors from a Ivy-league school, or have personal connections, you probably won't find employment anytime soon. You can try, but their is not much demand at this time. I would just try to do whatever it takes to make yourself more competitive for when finance jobs, particularly in trading, reappear.
  6. fogut


    Hi Monty,

    Any idea when trading jobs will reappear ? Does the personal trading record help you in getting a trading job ?

  7. That's tough to say when trading jobs will reappear... if you have several years experience and are skilled in quantitative finance and computer programming, then you have a good shot at finding employment soon. I see ton's of firms, particularly Hedge Funds, need to fill this demand.

    The problem is that the smaller investment banks and investment firms are not hiring for entry level trading-related positions. Looks like you need experience to work for these firms. Predicting when the demand will reemerge is like timing the end of the recession and unfortunately I'm not smart as some other ET posters and don't know when the economy will fully recover.

    If you have actual experience trading stocks, I don't think it will be important to most financial services firms because you initially would only obtain a associate/assistant position. Your edge is that by trading it makes you follow the market though nevertheless. You'll be doing executions at best, not speculating or managing money.

    If you go the prop route, then trading experience is certainly a plus. Some won't care about your strategy, but they will feel more confident that you've experienced emotional stress and understand the significance of discipline, work-ethic, etc.

    I would highly recommend that you get your trades audited if you have performed well and want to pursue the prop route. There are many legitimate firms that can capitalize you in the Chicago area. You have to be a day trader or very short-term swing trader though). The auditing can be expensive, but if you trade size and perform consistently you should be able to afford it.
  8. fogut


    Thanks for the reply, Monty.

    Ideally, I would like to work for a hedge fund. Being an Engineer, I have excellent math(quantitative) skills as well. I have very limited programming experience and have not had a job in the finance industry yet. I am out of school for about 5 years and have been working as an Engineer since then.

    If I discover that I might not able to get in a Hedge fund after a while, I may have to go a prop route. Do you know if there are any legitimate prop firms in the NYC area like in Chicago ?

    Thanks again for your help.
  9. First NY Securities is the best that I am aware of.

    Jane Street and D.E. Shaw Group also come to mind.

    All of these firms are exceptionally competitive and operate similarly to hedge funds... they employ many strategies and do a lot of arbitrage type trading. They try to exploit the inefficiencies of the market rather than just blindly speculate on it... usually some strategy of hedging is involved.

    If you want to pursue hedge-fund employment, I would recommend It's a recruiter site (need to register for free in order to view the jobs) and they have many hedge fund positions. They cater more to individuals with some experience though... doesn't have to be finance exclusively. I highly suggest that you try to understand the basics of some computer programming languages so you could put it on your resume. It would make you much more competitive., which is probably one of the better public job sites, has had several hedge fund positions too.

    Good Luck