Execution Trader Books

Hi All,

I'm looking to join the buy side, probably doing execution trading. I know, it's not very sexy. I've worked at several sell side trading desk and got recently laid off and now I'm stuck at a major bulge bracket in NYC, as a TA, on their cash equities desk, support their program, electronic, single stock and convertible desk. I want out... I was wondering if someone can recommend me some books to read up on execution trading... I bought "Optional Trading Strategies" by Robert Kissell and it's talk mostly about TCA and not so much on strategies. Any insight would help?

Comments (6)

Jul 19, 2018 - 11:49am
WSO Monkey Bot, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Hi mswoonc, the silence is deafening, sorry about that.... Any of the threads below helpful?

  • Execution Trader at Discretionary Macro Fund, Career killer or valid path to PM? Title pretty much says it all. I'm already running my own sell-side books/risk and have some ... discretionary Macro PMs/founders of multi-billion funds. However the roles are all described as execution ... trading. Is execution trading a valid path to a PM or risk-taking role? Will I be able to learn from the ...
  • Execution trading at a top hedge fund How tough is it to get a job as an execution trader at a top hedge fund? I'm sure it's ... not as selective as becoming a portfolio manager or a trader with your own book. I recently came ... execution trader for the medallion fund at RenTech. This gives me the impression that the criteria for ...
  • Execution traders could discuss the role of execution traders. Would it be a good position to take out of college at ... worried by what I've read as execution traders essentially being support roles that are not very ... a hedge fund? I am interested in pursuing a position I will be interviewing for as a junior trader, but am ...
  • Buy Side Execution Trader to Sell Side? I'm currently an execution trader at a $10B hedge fund. I take orders from 3 portfolio ... I have through our counter parties? Execution Trader ... managers. 2 PMs send me orders directly and for 1 PM I'm executing based off a pre-defined strategy. ...
  • Can Anyone Recommend a SOLID Bond maths book for young bond traders? anyone of the traders out there recommend a solid book that covers fixed income maths, especially bond ... mathematics in detail but that is not crazy hard to understand?? Any of you guys used a book at the start of ...
  • A little advice from a F50 executive a F50 executive. He was surprisingly friendly and started up a conversation with me (we were both ... experience, people don't usually recover from the second one. Book recommendations: He recommended the ... following two books, which I found to be fascinating reads: "Shredded: Inside RBS: The Bank that Broke ...
  • Books are back because Amazon likes them ago, as Jeff Bezos launched the Kindle ereader in New York, he declared that "the book is so ... a bookstore in Manhattan. There are signs of the book's renaissance all around. Waterstones, the UK book ... chain, returned to profit last year after suffering six years of losses. Sales of print books in the US ...
  • AMA- I quit my job as a bond trader to fight MMA in Peru A few years ago, I quit my job as a corporate bond trader to become a professional MMA fighter in ... to get my own book to trade. But I had always missed my career as a college wrestler. One day I took ... living in Spain for two years teaching English. I wrote a book about the experience called The Cage: ...
  • More suggestions...

No promises, but sometimes if we mention a user, they will share their wisdom: oSnap sheffieldisa aceon

You're welcome.

Most Helpful
Jul 25, 2018 - 1:56am
gryphus, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Turney Duff's book about his time at Galleon and Argus gives a pretty good view into life as a HF equities execution trader. The roles are reasonably different day-in/out depending on asset class - since you are not seeing flow/pricing it daily, it can be significantly harder to identify a good price even on a liquid asset. In many firms, you (or the larger trading team) has soft dollar responsibility and will have to balance out who you trade with/meeting quotas for research and other expenses.

If you are looking to join equities execution; a few of my friends have been let go in that space. Algorithms are getting better at filling flow and most cash equity desks are dead except for the occasional block trade. Two of my friends who made the switch came from single-name equity derivatives.

In less-liquid products e.g. distressed, the PM-trader relationship tends to be much stronger (this is my personal experience) as the PM is more reliant on the trader for market color and flow (dark market); which in turn gives the trading role higher importance instead of being a execution monkey.

Jul 30, 2018 - 9:26am
mswoonc, what's your opinion? Comment below:

I mean, cash equities execution traders still provide color, no? And I'm sure there is still usage of DMA instead of relying solely on algos all the time? I work literally next to the head of program desk at a bulge bracket and we favor trades 50K+ shares but the biggest flow we want are the risk off trades. I think there are still a lot of usage in that. I don't work directly on the program desk, maybe it's best ask him...

Jul 30, 2018 - 7:12pm
kingofchardonnay, what's your opinion? Comment below:

The reason you can't find much literature on this is because most of the value-add for a cash equities execution guy is relationship-driven, or focused on ECM-style activities. As has been echoed here, it's not a great seat unless you're coming in with shared economics at a sizeable new launch, and even then is equivalent to short career gamma. The number of credible, experienced execution guys without jobs far outstrips the number of guys in seats, and there is little/no rhyme or reason as to who trades for which fund because most PM's in the equity space are not well versed in objective metrics to evaluate execution traders, nor do they particularly value their insights as acting on short term technicals can elicit pretty difficult conversations with LPs who view them as superfluous to the core strategy.

Take it with a grain of salt, but my advice is if trading is not working for you, then you should switch out of trading. There are tons of other business lines that the skill set is applicable to if you're willing to hustle. Equity execution has an awful outlook, and the color that execution guys can provide is laughably limited unless they have extremely strong factor/risk premia and ETF flow views (and, a PM willing to act on said insights).

If you're not happy in your current role, think about tertiary careers in the industry in which you can leverage your skills.

Feb 12, 2022 - 9:45pm
Steve0z0, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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