job choice help! Goldman Sachs or Trading Firm???

Discussion in 'Commodity Futures' started by carl1111, Jan 27, 2006.

  1. carl1111


    I have noticed some of your posts here, and you seem to know a lot about trading options. I have a career choice question for you. I am a very recent graduate from a top undergraduate business school, and I finished in the top 2% of my class there Beta Gamma Sigma. I interned last summer at Goldman Sachs as an investment banker, and received an offer to return full time. However, I also received a job offer at a trading firm that specializes in trading options based on volatility. They look for news, events, earnings releases and make trades based on that. This firm has been very profitable in the past, and it is growing. It is a market-TAKING firm as well, not a market-maker. It is off-floor. Overall comp at goldman would be nearly 150k first year, given weekend comp which they provide, signing bonus, and end of year bonus, not to mention 2 free meals each day provided by them. The trading firm is offering a salary of around 45k first year, and a possible bonus of 10-20k. I have never traded before, but I am very interested in it, however I am afraid that I will not be good at it. What do you think is the biggest key to success at trading options? I am very hard working and somewhat intelligent, and this stuff is the key to success in something like investment banking, but I am not sure if this will translate over to trading success. If I start at goldman, in a way I cannot lose, because I keep all doors open while making decent money. I can go to business school, law school, or probably get in to private equity. However, I consider this trading opportunity to be pretty compelling as well, especially since they are growing and there is a big opportunity for advancement somewhat quickly, and the markets are getting more volatile. I would not want to completely stink at trading options and then have to start all over, at a disadvantage (although I will always have my undergrad record on my resume which is a strength) What are you thoughts on which opportunity to take? How hard is it to get in to a good trading firm, even after a couple years at goldman as an analyst? I know of a 26 year old at the trading firm that earned around 500k this past year in total comp. Would working at a trading firm be considered good qork experience for getting in to business school later, if I then wanted to go to an i-bank as an associate? Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
  2. ra1


    The answer to your question is impossible for anyone but you to answer and depends totally on the life you want to have - making a good income with good hours or making a reasonable income with maybe harder hours. To be honest you have two good choices and noone can look into the future, so it probably doesn't matter which you choose - you'll be fine with whatever decision you make.
  3. carl1111


    in terms of hours expected at the office, the answer is the trading firm.
  4. MTE


    I'd go for GS. It will open a whole lot more doors for you. You can always go to trading later, but you can't replace the contacts that you will get at GS.
  5. Seconded.
    GS on the cv as your first firm will open a lot of door later on.
  6. Carl, u have to take the GS job. Forget the small one, it may come and go, GS is the solid one.

    Also by working in GS, u will come to know more intimate details of how big institutions work, and how the financial world works. How much will u learn in that small trading firm? Plus imagine the training, mentoring, resources/ equipment, other top-achiever peers, the contacts u will build, the polish it will look in ur CV....

    Working in big organizations will give u many benefits. Especially since u are young, it's a great opportunity to soak up the learning and be in the right environment. Plus the money is also better right?

    You will be at a loss if u join the small trading firm, they will get u as a bargain. As a top achiever, u must go to the top organizations, not the wanna-be ones. You will be at a loss in this trade off.
  7. timmyz


    lol you are still agonizing over this? you started another thread about this a while back.

    obviously your heart wants the trading job, but your brain is telling you to take GS. i think you are posting here to find reasons to justify doing what you want to do instead of what you should do.

    are you already personally wealthy? do you need to have a job and a career?

    heck if you are already wealthy and don't really need to work then by all means follow your heart right out of school and do what you want. heck go travel the world and read poetry in caves lol.

    if you are not in this position then you better play it safe and go to GS. you are at wharton right? think about it this way. what if you chose to go to a school ranked much lower. you will probably be just as smart but the doors to many of the opportunities available to wharton students will be closed to you.
  8. Goldman Sachs is the opportunity of a lifetime. Give it a year. If you don't like it, then you'll have plenty of places that will give a GS employee a shot at options trading. Don't screw this up.
  9. Great point!!!!!!!!!!!:cool:
  10. Definitely go to GS. Go institutional, let the Elite slug it out.
    #10     Jan 27, 2006