Power Analyst or Real-time trader?

Have 2 offers on the board and unsure what I should pick. First job out of school. I want to be a trader but trade FTR and Day ahead not dispatch and all that real time stuff. Analyst role looks like a lot of work with no trading opportunity- correct me if wrong.

Comments (28)

Aug 17, 2022 - 7:41pm
WinnerWinner, what's your opinion? Comment below:

If you want to trade FTRs, go get an electrical engineering degree or a PhD in math, physics, etc and the power analyst job would be a lot better.

You say you don't want to be a real time trader but are considering a real time trader role? That makes no sense to me. Depending on the exact role you would probably be able to do some DA transactions but if this role is the standard shift work RT role, it's a lot of scheduling and stuff like that which it sounds like you don't want to do (though it's a great way to learn the business).

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Aug 19, 2022 - 10:45pm
energy_noob, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Will graduate this year with undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering. ISO make single line power diagrams. Am able to code. Job will be power flow analysis - did not ever do that

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Aug 20, 2022 - 8:04am
WinnerWinner, what's your opinion? Comment below:

You have most of the requirements for an analyst to FTR trader path. I'd still recommend/consider getting a masters or PhD in EE. It's not necessary now but if you want to trade spec and really make some money, your competition for spots will have those and it may make it harder to compete, especially for something senior. The job market for FTR traders is super hot right now so if you learn quickly you could get a junior trading role in a couple years easily. I haven't actively traded FTRs on the spec side for almost 10 years but I still get calls about FTR trading roles.

The math is being able solve the power flow to figure out where congestion will occur and what price to pay. You will have to understand the genstack, load patterns, line ratings, etc if you want to do long term auctions. Having general knowledge isnt enough, you really really need to know the details. Another piece where the math is really important is collateral management. The very best FTR traders can successfully manage both the gross margin side and the collateral side. For this you need to understand the ISOs rules on collateral and how each of your paths interact with each other in determining that.

Might be a good idea to learn some VBA as well. Python and R are great but a lot of shops still base stuff in VBA so having a work knowledge of that is helpful.

If you have other questions you can PM me

Aug 18, 2022 - 1:08pm
gctrader, what's your opinion? Comment below:

if you want to trade FTRs go for the power analyst role. Look for chances to run sced/power flow models and have daily interactions with traders. Some places, not all, RT can be off in their own world.

Learn congestion patterns, I've seen both RT traders and analyst move in to FTR roles. Just have the expectation that it will take ~ 3- 5 years to get to risk taking.

MSEE degrees help immensely but are not required...know some CRR traders with liberal arts degrees. just my 2 cents...

Aug 20, 2022 - 8:08am
WinnerWinner, what's your opinion? Comment below:

What do you mean by that? Trading virtuals for DA/RT spreads or on ICE trading DA prices? I've personally never known an FTR trader to also trade DA products on ICE but using virtuals to optimize FTR positions is common. The math here is really important as well because you don't want to cause forfeitures so you really need to watch volumes and prices.

Aug 23, 2022 - 9:26pm
Krispykrememcdonald15, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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