Help! What should I be looking for in a firm as a new trader?

Discussion in 'Prop Firms' started by Egarim, Dec 11, 2007.

  1. Egarim



    I will be graduating in May 2008 from NYU. I have a GPA close to 3.9 with an econ major and math/physics minor. I have been playing poker professionally for the last year, and I have paid my way through college. I believe the qualities and skills that have made me a top poker player translate well to trading. I have absolutely no experience in trading, but trading is something I've always wanted to do. Recently, I have been interviewing a lot with firms, and I have received a lot of interest. I very much want to be a trader, but I am having trouble figuring out which firms are good. I don't know what specific qualities/characteristics I should be looking for in a firm. I was hoping to get input on what I should be looking for when choosing a firm to work for.

    1. What do most people consider to be the best form of trading that translates into success? I have interviewed with firms that provide training with books, videos, audios, etc. In another firm, I would work under a mentor. (I understand that theres no standard for training. I merely was curious to people's opinions)
    2. What type of incentives should I be looking at (i.e. salary vs nonsalary, % of profits kept, etc.), and how much should I factor this into my decision in choosing a firm since I have no trading experience (I am financially stable at the moment thanks to poker)?
    3. What are the advantages/disadvanges of working for a large firm vs a smaller firm?
    4. I have garnered interest from firms that focus on trading futures, options, or equities. Is any of these more profitable than the others? Should I factor this into my decision even though I have no trading experience?

    So far, I've been going through these forums and found a lot of useful information which has helped me greatly. I would appreciate any and all help. Thank you.
  2. yayt


    Hey, I am in a similar place as you although a little further from graduation.
    Are you speaking of prop trading firms, prop desks at investment banks, or Sales & Trading divisions of ibanks?

    I really doubt you would want to do S&T, as I understand it they just trade flow all day.
  3. Egarim


    I'm mainly referring to prop firms since this is the prop firm forum and I'd expect most people posting here to have specific knowledge related to that. However, I have gotten interest from prop desks at Ibanks, so I suppose my questions extends beyond just prop firms. Any responses with good info on any of these is appreciated. Thanks.
  4. Come to the world's home of derivatives: Chicago. The opportunity here is huge....
  5. Egarim


    I have lived in Chicago before, and although I love it there, I would prefer staying in NYC for personal reasons and for love of the city. There's just no place like NYC.