Asset Management Internship Freshman Year

Rank: Monkey | 52

So I've received this offer to intern at a value-investing fund in NYC, holding about $7b AUM. My experience from personal investing and the investment club I was in this past year really helped me articulate my thought process and investing style over phone interviews with the PM that I had cold emailed a few months ago. I will be quitting my current Corp. Finance gig for this if I take the position.

My question is, how good are Asset Management internships overall? Most of it is just researching companies, the boss saying no, and going at it again researching (my naive first impression). My job would be unpaid while my corporate finance gig is paying ~$1000/week, where I work to help allocate cash to different business sectors/make sure expenses are allocated similarly and handle a lot of internal accounting work.

Obviously, I'll take the job that better prepares me for IB junior year recruiting, but I'm also hesitant because making money to pay off student loans this summer would also be nice (as well as making some money for spring break), and I still have the summer after sophomore year to get some other AM internship.

I consider myself really lucky that I acquired an internship at a large AM firm, but are they a dime a dozen or actually really hard to break into? I've often had the impression that you do IB --> buy side, but if I can get an internship after just emailing and calling a PM showing my genuine interest, what makes this AM internship so elusive?

Stocks are pretty interesting to me, obviously because you make money from it and the whole process going through, but I'm not sure I would want to do it as a career path. More so, a side hobby. Yet, I'm only 20 years old, so I wouldn't know if 6 years from now, I decide I want to just sit and do investment management for the next 20-30 years.

TL;DR
- should I drop a paid corporate finance internship with a Fortune 100, getting paid about $15k through the summer, for an unpaid internship at a $7b AUM Asset Management firm?
- how useful are AM internships in the route to IB? I know PWM is generally a pos, while AM is good in that you actually do research, but is it really that great of a talking point for switching to IB?
- are obtaining AM internships generally difficult (especially for freshies/sophomores)? It's no hedge fund (just long only positions), and there are tons of them out there.

Thanks for your input, I really appreciate it.

Comments (20)

 
Jun 30,2013

bump, let me know if you have any initial opinions. I have a week and a half to decide!

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Jun 30,2013

Where are you finding a Corp Fin role as a freshman that's paying you $1000/wk?

 
Jun 30,2013
 
 
Jun 30,2013

Yes this is better than 95% of high school students' summer before freshman year. I was a camp counselor my pre-frosh summer and I'm starting in IB in June.

 
Jun 30,2013
Raptor.45:

Yes this is better than 95% of high school students' summer before freshman year. I was a camp counselor my pre-frosh summer and I'm starting in IB in June.

More like 99.99%, thats better than 50% of juniors in college realistically looking at all schools.

Frank Sinatra - "Alcohol may be man's worst enemy, but the bible says love your enemy."

 
Jun 30,2013
yeahright:
Raptor.45:

Yes this is better than 95% of high school students' summer before freshman year. I was a camp counselor my pre-frosh summer and I'm starting in IB in June.

More like 99.99%, thats better than 50% of juniors in college realistically looking at all schools.

Dude if you think about how many colleges are out there any finance internship would be better than 90% of all college juniors in the country. The only thing I was worried about summer after my senior year of high school was if my shitty fake would work at the gas station or if we were gonna have to get someone's older brother to buy the beer for us

I would agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

 
Jun 30,2013

Are you based in Jamaica? PM me. I know a lot of PE recruiters down there.

 
Jun 30,2013

I didn't even know what PWM was after my last year of high school. You are in a very good position right now. Use your summer experience to network and see if you like the business/office culture.

 
 
Best Response
Jun 30,2013

I can add a little bit of my own experience with having had an AM (essentially buy-side research) internship my sophomore year of college. I interviewed with a lot of banks junior year for SA, and on my resume had an AM internship as well as several investing-related items. The big question I got asked every single time was, given my resume, why banking instead of asset management? It was hard to answer because I never really wanted to do banking in the first place, so you gotta come up with some way to tie your experience in AM into how you are more passionate about banking than investing. You can't just tell the interviewer that you only took the AM job because you couldn't get an IB job that summer... so you gotta come up with something creative, even if it's a "slight" stretching of the truth.

I hate victims who respect their executioners

 
Jun 30,2013
BlackHat:

I can add a little bit of my own experience with having had an AM (essentially buy-side research) internship my sophomore year of college. I interviewed with a lot of banks junior year for SA, and on my resume had an AM internship as well as several investing-related items. The big question I got asked every single time was, given my resume, why banking instead of asset management? It was hard to answer because I never really wanted to do banking in the first place, so you gotta come up with some way to tie your experience in AM into how you are more passionate about banking than investing. You can't just tell the interviewer that you only took the AM job because you couldn't get an IB job that summer... so you gotta come up with something creative, even if it's a "slight" stretching of the truth.

Thanks for the reply! I wanna pick the AM offer simply because I feel like I may build up a more solid fundamental skill set that can be transferred to the IB job in future. It's like to choose between fundamental skills and relevant skills. I believe I can learn more things and do more actual work from the AM job because their deal flow is absolutely better than the two small IB firms, and I am a sophomore so I think it'd be great to really focus on the fundamental skills.

Would this make sense in an interview? Thanks! :)

 
Jun 30,2013

I'm not sure how that will come across in an interview. I understand what you're saying, but I feel like firms would prefer to see that you already did IBD than hear why you explain why you thought AM would teach you more than a boutique IB.

If you already have some offers in IBD at small boutiques (which it sounds like you do?), one of those might still be the better choice compared to AM. It'll make your story a lot easier to communicate next year when recruiting for IBD internships at BBs. I think generally, you're better off doing now what's closest to what you want to end up doing. When recruiting for IBD as a junior, it'll be a big advantage having done it as a sophomore (since the vast majority of your peers will not have such relevant experience).

That said, I did S&T in my sophomore year (at a BB), and was able to get an IBD SA spot during junior recruiting. If the AM firm has a much better brand name, and if the IB boutique really doesn't sound like it will offer a good experience or is completely unknown, then that makes the choice harder.

 
Jun 30,2013
asiamoney:

I'm not sure how that will come across in an interview. I understand what you're saying, but I feel like firms would prefer to see that you already did IBD than hear why you explain why you thought AM would teach you more than a boutique IB.

If you already have some offers in IBD at small boutiques (which it sounds like you do?), one of those might still be the better choice compared to AM. It'll make your story a lot easier to communicate next year when recruiting for IBD internships at BBs. I think generally, you're better off doing now what's closest to what you want to end up doing. When recruiting for IBD as a junior, it'll be a big advantage having done it as a sophomore (since the vast majority of your peers will not have such relevant experience).

That said, I did S&T in my sophomore year (at a BB), and was able to get an IBD SA spot during junior recruiting. If the AM firm has a much better brand name, and if the IB boutique really doesn't sound like it will offer a good experience or is completely unknown, then that makes the choice harder.

Thanks a lot, asiamoney.
I understand what you are saying. It is a very hard decision to make. The AM firm's brand name is very internationally prestigious and also a very solid name in finance. The two IB boutiques are both HongKong-based small firms that are completely unknown. That's why I am very hesitant to take the IBD offer.

 
 
Jun 30,2013

Would you be working for an Advisor?

If so, it is quite possible that what she has outlined could happen. Any more details on the role?

"Be first, be smarter, or cheat!"

 
Jun 30,2013

not as of yet, she said she will contact later to schedule an interview w/the office members (so im still in the recruiting process) but i just wanted a heads up.
it seemed like i will doing a lot of cold calling since she asked me some q's on my phone handling experience. is that part of adminstrative work or working w/clients?

 
Jun 30,2013

It depends on the firm plus the role you get.

 
Jun 30,2013

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