Global Markets Structuring at local bank v.s. Commodity Trading at trading house

hi guys, as what the title suggests, debating between two offers. i've seen people say "choose the industry, not the job/role/etc" and i'm using that as a basis to make the decision.

list of considerations to choose between offers:

  • brand name & comp: the commodity trading offer is at one of the big trading houses (along the likes of vitol/glencore/trafigura/gunvor) while the banking role is at a local bank with lower comp offered but my plan was to get my foot in the door to this industry (given the job market now) and switch banks later on
  • international exposure: i would like to work overseas/travel and it seems as if the trading house provides such opportunities early on in my career (i've seen other analysts move to international offices) while for banking, international postings are less common. i'm open to any country, but most interested in canada and i know they're big on o&g.
  • progression: for the trading house, progression into a trader is much slower and can take 5+ years and you have to be at the right place right time. for banks, typically faster as there are many banks to jump ship to.
  • sabbatical opportunity: i'm considering a sabbatical later on in my career (currently 23, thinking of sabbatical when i'm 30ish) for 1 year, and looking to go back to the same job after. i might be overprojecting, but i thought i would develop niche/specialised skills in commodities trading and given the few number of trading houses, i would thus still be in demand/relevant when i return from the sabbatical. however, for banking, there's fierce competition and a million candidates that can fill the role, hence it might be more difficult to return after a sabbatical.
  • growth of industries: the growth of commod trading industry is still pretty opaque and this is a huge deterrent to me joining this industry, as compared to finance/tech which are highly raved about in the news. going back to the quote in my first sentence, i had hoped to join a high growth industry in hopes that i could ride the wave. i've spoken to bankers and they've told me that if i join the commods industry, it would be hard to transition back into banking as there's limited interaction between trading houses and banks, and the nature of business is very different.
  • interest in industry: i'm interested in both industries and both roles, but on a personal level i felt that commod trading was interesting because i get to learn more about how the world works and how everyday products flow, as compared to a structuring role which would expose me to financial products + the risks that clients want to hedge against.
  • job stability: in the last period it seemed like finance/tech hired to fire, and job security is not guaranteed especially in today's market, which is likely to happen again in the future. for the commod trading firm, i know commodities do have cycles as well, but these are longer than your average business cycle and the firm did tell me they don't hire to fire in the interview. for commod, i think the biggest threat to job security is consolidation in the industry and transition away from non-renewables.

so the decision really weighs on commodities v.s. banking industry, and i want to choose well, because this will set the stage for my career in the next 40ish years (i'm hesitant to do a masters, start over, just to switch careers/industry). let me know your thoughts on the above considerations and if i've had any blindspots.


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