UC Berkeley Senior Needs Guidance

Discussion in 'Professional Trading' started by CalScholar, Oct 2, 2006.

  1. Hello all,

    I have long been interested in a trading career and figure it's about time I started doing some research.

    I will be graduating in June (3.6 GPA) and would like to start training immediately thereafter. Upon exiting college I will be broke and in debt, so an initial capital contribution requirement may be problematic (but not impossible).

    My major is Political Science, which obviosusly isn't ideal for a trader. Nevertheless, I'm motivated and I have no doubt that I can succeed as a trader.

    Basically, I'm looking for any advice you are willing to spare. Am I qualified to work at a good firm? Should I take any particular courses before leaving Cal? Anything would help!

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Trading is a no brainer activity. You have a 3.6 grade pt avg. Put it to better use. Not being negative, just hate to see someone not live up to their full potential.

    There's a big world out there. Trading seems
    so limiting.
  3. lets say you were drafted in the military and you were given a choice. you could go out with a fighting unit where 90% of the members were killed or you could go work in the supply depot where you could earn a comfortable living while you put in your time. which would you choose?

    that is what you face in a trading career starting out "broke and in debt". 90% will fail. use your knowledge to earn a stake then consider trading later in life.
  4. from a Cal grad that's worked in finance for the last decade in the Bay Area, there are quite a few hedge funds in the area, try to get involved with one..particularly one which will sponsor you for the cfa. Don't worry about salary or your job description. Like another poster said, trading your own capital will always be there..and trust me, SF is way more fun when you when you work at a fund and not as a daytrader.

    Go Bears.
  5. Cal - I will offer this - once you have adequate trading capital, now is a great time to test the waters. You are young with little obligations. If it doesn't work, you chalk up a year or so to 'starting your own business' and move on.

    If you don't do it, you will always wonder what if.

    There is a lot to be said when you work for yourself. Corporate America isn't all it's cracked up to be.

    Good luck.

    Use the search feature to on this site as there have been a couple of this type of threads lately.
  6. Exactly. You are from a top school with solid GPA. It will be a terrible waste if you start to trade right out of school. If I were you, I would get a decent job in finance, get a feel for the market and accumulate trading capital that way before striking out on your own. You can't trade without capital.

    Remember the market is always open, there's no need to rush into trading.
  7. kotika


    Guys, its is not obvious from his post whether he intends to trade on his own, i think he's asking about trading as a job.

    You could probably be making over 200K in couple of years, if you take up a trainee position at a bank or hedge fund. We hear that it is hard to get into a trading position, more likely sales or backoffice or whatever. But most prestigious is of course trading. Trading the firm's money for a bonus is as close to free lunch as there ever was. I would actually pay money for the privilege to trade even 1m in firm's capital for a 20% payout.

  8. Your 3.6 from Berkeley puts you in a good position for
    a position in the corporate world. (Of course law school
    would seem to make a lot of sense - considering your major,
    your GPA and the university). Interview on campus for a
    position with a major firm or go the law route. If after several
    years, you are dissatisfied choose trading as an alternative.
    One caveat where trading would be acceptable is if you can trade at a fund where they intensively train you
    and pay you a salary (such as First New York Securities) this
    is about the only way I would recommend that you become
    involved in trading immediately after graduation.
  9. DaBrain


    Good luck with your "trading" career.

    A political science major out of UC Berkeley is going to be about as prized a background in the financial markets as a turd in a punch bowl.

    I don't know why so many desire to go into trading as a career without even having experienced life working in the private sector.

    The only advice I have for you is DO NOT TAKE A GOVERNMENT JOB and get a good solid money making career under your belt.

    Being a full time trader in my opinion is something you have to have a passion for. The fact that you are posing this question as a senior in college (I presume you are about 21 or 22 years old) supports the notion that you are simply "exploring" the possibility.

    Good Luck with whatever you choose and your Berkeley degree.
  10. You know somethings stated here are good and somethings are so so. I'd say go for your passion. Don't waste time getting involved with a career you don't want because you have excellent credentials. Go For It!!!! But set it up to take small risks. Because you are young, you have lots of time to make mistakes and recover.

    Once you enter the Corporate world your time will be limited and learning to trade will not be so easy when your expected to work 60_hours a week. So take a deep breathe..Close your eyes and step forward with full faith that you can do it!!! and keep in mind that failure is an opportunity to learn and begin again. There are no right anwers in real life, as your hi credential would suggest. Go for it.
    #10     Oct 4, 2006