Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Investment Banking Career – Entry Level Jobs III

Sales & Trading

Another Great Way to Start Your Investment Banking Career

Sales people and traders make lots of money. However there is lots of hard work in it, though with lots of fun. Be prepared to work long hours and totally dedicated to your job.

Institutional Salespeople sells securities and investment recommendations, investment management capabilities, and services to large investors typically referred to as “institutional investors.”

Traders are market makers on the floor of a stock exchange required to buy and sell to maintain fair and orderly markets in the securities they are assigned by the exchange. Floor Traders execute buy and sell orders for clients of the firms and individuals that they work for as agents.

Each year, the bulge brackets absorb the best quality candidates from top universities and train them to do sales & trading job. Internship is a two-way street to test if you like the job or if the job suits you. Today, we’ll look at how JPM train their interns and what kind of sales & trading opportunities there are.

Quotes from JPMorgan:
It's worth remembering that our internships are the key recruiting source for hires into our full-time program, so you might find yourself returning to school for your senior year with a full-time offer to join us in your pocket.

What we look for: We recruit students from many backgrounds - but an aptitude for numbers is a must. If you don't have a strong financial or business background, be sure you can tell your story; be able to demonstrate your quantitative aptitude both scholastically (SATs, coursework) and practically (former jobs, for example) and be ready to articulate how your background will enhance your career at JPMorgan.

The most successful route to a career with JPMorgan's Sales & Trading group is through our summer internship program
, for two reasons. First, it will give you the opportunity to see what it's really like to work on a trading floor; and second, we hire as many of our full-time analysts as possible from the summer program.

To Get a Taste of Trading Now
An investment banking career is full of challenges. Start challenging yourself today. JPMorgan has designed an online trading game FantasyFutures. Students from the US or Europe can participate. The simulated interest rates game allowed students to act like traders – tracking global markets and taking risks.

Winners will receive an invitation to visit JPMorgan’s trading floor, apart from receiving other prizes. Remember to mark this on your resume in case you happen to be a winner.

Meet Victoria from JPMorgan’s IR Derivatives Trading Desk
Here is what Victoria says: The very first moment I set foot on a trading floor I thought it was a really interesting environment. I think you either like it or you don’t. It’s not always easy and there are constant interruptions, so you need to be pretty disciplined. Personally I really enjoy the energy and the constant interaction. I don’t like it when it’s quiet. Read Victoria’s full story.

As a trader, you need not only to be good at numbers, you’ll also need a personality fit. As Victoria said, “discipline” is important in a trader’s life. Once at the trading floor, you are only allowed to do trading-related matters. Some investment banks don’t even allow their traders to take their mobile phones to the trading floor. As a headhunter, I can only contact my trader candidates/clients after market close, no matter how urgent the matter is.

Test of Your Investment Knowledge
What is proprietary trading?

Check for an answer in my next post.

Do you want to be an equity trader? Take a FREE career test!

Investment banking career

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