How do you get a job as a Trader with a bank or investment firm?

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by MikeJonez, Jan 18, 2004.

  1. I live in Canada and am currently searching for an entry-level job as a Trader with a bank, brokerage, investment firm, etc. to start my trading career. I have completed the CSC and am almost finished the CPH (similar to the Series 7), have a University degree and am ready to get started. It's not easy getting in, however, and I'm hoping someone has a few tips and strategies that might help me break in.

    I do not want to begin my career working at a Prop house.

    Any advice would be a big help.

  2. Why wouldn't you want to start your career at a prop house? Do you think you're too good for that Mr No Experience??

    Believe me when I say you have virtually zero chance to land anything at a big firm unless you want to start out as coffee boy and work your way up to trader (which takes about 10 years by the way). The only way you're going to become a trader out of university is by going to a prop firm and proving you can actually make money. Only at that point will a big firm look at you as a potential trader.

    Crappy but true.
  3. First of all, I do not think that I am too good for Prop trading. I simply would like to focus on a bank or firm becasue I've put a lot of time and effort into completing the CSC and CPH industry course requirements and don't want to just throw them away.

    Second, I am not a new graduate, if that's what you're saying. Although I hold a degree, I have been working for several years with a couple banks/brokerages (Amex Canada and Wood Gundy) while completing the CSC and getting ready to apply for a trading position.

    Finally, being a coffee boy isn't exactly what I had in mind, however, I am willing to start at the bottom and work hard. I have met the educational requirements, there must be something out there to start with.
  4. If you worked @ Wood Gundy why dont you go talk to some of the people on the floor? Ask them how they got their positions.

    Remember that working for Banks is primarily about "sales" and alot less about "trading".
  5. Ebo


    Half and Half ..............2 Sugars Please!
  6. range


    I have had three jobs in the investment business (1 in sales and 2 in analysis) over 20 years. Each job that I took had a similar theme: a friend who was an employee who gave me a heads-up on a job opening. The longer you are in the business (even if you are in the mail room), the more friends you make. The more friends you make, the more leads you get, etc.....

    The more experience you have, the more people call you to let you know of openings (at your firm or others) and to try to convince you to fill the openings. Getting the first trading job will be hard. Talk to a lot of people. Even cold call from a list of firms that you think you might like to work at.

    Don't just stick with stocks if you hear of an opening in another area, such as bonds.

    With your experience and your credentials, it sounds like you are well on your way.
  7. I worked as an assistant to an Investment Advisor for a short period, so my connections to the trading department is limited.

    Any recommendations about how I can get into the loop?
  8. This is exactly what I am focusing've got it! The problem is finding that assistant job. Believe me, I have no problem with grabbing coffee!
  9. the IA probably talks to the desk all the time. get the IA to make a call for you. Or just get the # of one of the guys on the desk. didnt' you talk to back office people when you worked their? Everyone knows someone @ head office. Get creative.
  10. You're right and that's the attitude I'm taking. I'm working hard and I've got my list of firms that I've been calling right here. Its been tough and I'm trying everything, but like you say, I've got the credentials, I've got the experience, and I'm ready to work hard. Now all I need is the magical break.
    #10     Jan 18, 2004