Tier 3 IB Markets Internship or HFT Trading Firm Internship??

I'm in my second year studying Maths at a Target Uni in the UK and I need advice in which one of these two internships to go for:

The first internship is in the Markets Division (Cross-Asset) at a Tier 3 Investment Bank in London.

The second internship is as a Trading Intern at a high-frequency trading firm in Amsterdam.

I'm really looking for something that's going to be more quantitative/mathsy and so it'll make sense for me to choose the second over the first, however there's a few things holding me back. Firstly, because the first bank set an exploding deadline, I've already had to accept them before I got the second offer, so I'd have to renege the contract I've signed. Secondly, I would prefer to have a graduate role based in London, and so even though I'm going to go and apply for graduate roles next year, with the first internship, I have a role in London in hand (assuming I convert), while for the second one, I'd only have a role in Amsterdam in hand.

My questions really boil down to: Would other Prop Trading Firms/HFT firms (eg. Jane Street, DRW etc.) look more favourably on the second internship vs the first (I believe the answer is not really, but would like someone to confirm)? Would other investment banks look more favourably on the first internship compared to the second (I believe the answer is probably yes)? Can you still end up in fairly quantitative roles at an investment bank? And reading all the doom and gloom talk about trading on these forums, which internship would more protect me against the axing of headcounts in Trading?

Thanks to anyone who can give me any insight!

Comments (5)

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  • Intern in HF - EquityHedge

Depending on the HFT your offer is from, I'd say the answer to both questions you raise is no.  If you go to a legit HFT/prop shop and pick up some skills (or take classes there), I'd imagine you would be better prepared for both types of interviews.  Interning at S&T is mostly just shadowing and automating tasks.  A lot of HFTs and prop shops teach theory and stuff which would be helpful (especially those not studying that stuff in undergrad).  Personally, I'd take the HFT.  However, it's harder to recruit for S&T for full time than it is for HFT, so that's something to think about. 

  • Intern in HF - EquityHedge

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