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Careers in Quant Finance talk at UCLA Financial Engineering
 

Careers in Quant Finance talk at UCLA Financial Engineering

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Guest lecture given to students at the UCLA Masters in Financial Engineering program on 'Careers in Quantitative Finance'

Guest lecture given to students at the UCLA Masters in Financial Engineering program on 'Careers in Quantitative Finance'

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    Careers in Quant Finance talk at UCLA Financial Engineering Careers in Quant Finance talk at UCLA Financial Engineering Presentation Transcript

    • Careers in Quantitative Finance A Students Perspective Ashwin Rao UCLA MFE, April 2013
    • My Background● B.Tech. Computer Science. IIT-Bombay.● Ph.D. Algorithmic Algebra. USC, Los Angeles.● VP. Quant Strategist. Goldman Sachs, NY.● Managing Director. Modeling. Morgan Stanley.● Founder. ZLemma.com (A Tech Startup).
    • Define Quantitative Finance?● For this talk, we limit the scope of definition to:● Roles at Large Banks & Hedge Funds● Trading Businesses involving Quant Analysis● Requires advanced skills in Math/Stats/CompSci● Requires sound understanding of trading markets
    • Some Examples● Derivatives Trader● Trading Desk Quant Strategist● Derivatives Modeler, Econometric Modeler● Algorithmic Trading Quant● Analytics Developer
    • Trading Desk Strategist● Focused on a specific business or product● Deep knowledge of the specific market● Blend of Math, Stats and programming skills● Trading Strategies & Risk Management● Work closely with Traders, Sales, Risk, IT, Ops
    • Derivatives Modeler● Modeling stochastic dynamics of markets● Solving derivatives pricing and hedging problems● Expertise in Arbitrage-Free Pricing Theory● Stochastic Calculus, PDEs, Numerical Methods● Requires programming skills too, typically C++
    • Analytics Developer● Requires strong Computer Science background● Understanding of products and pricing models● Tools for pricing, risk metrics, scenario analysis● Data models, algorithms, functional programming● Development of Domain Specific Languages
    • Algorithmic Trading Quant● Markets are going increasingly electronic● Systematic exploitation of market inefficiencies● Analysis of historical market behavior & patterns● Fleeting inefficiencies - Speed of execution key● Systems programming & Statistics backgrounds
    • Preparation while at School● Develop coding skills, eg: Python, Java, C++● Algorithms, Databases, Numerical Methods● Data Analysis, Econometric Modeling skills● Avoid studying advanced quant finance● Much of your learning will happen on the job
    • What to expect during interviews● Represent your abilities clearly and accurately● Typically, a large and diverse set of interviewers● Flood of puzzles, programming & math problems● Questions in your claimed areas of expertise● Evaluation of your communication and attitude
    • An example: Mortgage Trading● Mortgage products are complex and messy● Blend of risk-neutral and econometric modeling● Understanding the Price of Model Risk● Capturing liquidity risk and transaction costs● Need for advanced data/software enginering
    • Current Wall Street Scenario● Regulations have hurt the industry● Compensation levels down from 5 years ago● People with STEM backgrounds are thriving● Markets getting increasingly electronic● More emphasis on vanilla trading businesses
    • ZLemma - Algorithmic Career Guidance● ZLemma.com evaluates your profile in detail● ZLemma Quotient (ZQ) - your suitability for a job● ZQ is your score out of 100 for a specific job● Apply for high-ZQ jobs of interest to you● Jobs ranging from Wall Street to Silicon Valley
    • Addendum● Tune in to: blog.zlemma.com● Write to: ashwin@zlemma.com● Our app is your friend: zlemma.com