Best path London L/S HF: ER vs M&A vs L.O

Hi folks,

I'm currently sitting in an ER FT offer to work under a top analyst in a BB. Long term goal would be to land a gig in a L/S HF in London. I also have a clear biased towards SM funds since I am not a big fan of trading quarters. I know this topic has been already discussed in some posts but seems there's no consensus at all. My options are as follows:

1)Taking the ER offer and forget about recruiting

2) Try to leverage the ER offer for a top LO: Fido, T.Rowe, Cap. Group...  Any other buy-side shop that would beat the ER offer?

3) M&A at either a top BB (MS/GS) or EB(PJT/EVR/LAZ). I'll have to apply to summer internships/OC again since I doubt I could leverage the ER offer for an IB one.

I'd like to know what are your thoughts and what would you do if you were my shoes. Thx!

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Comments (8)

Aug 19, 2021 - 9:30am

ER is a feeder into London based L/S HFs so there is a definite pathway there. 

If however you can secure a Fidelity/Wellington/Cap Group/T. Rowe then I would take that simply because the comp/lifestyle/work is better. Whether you can move to a L/S fund I do not know as it isn't typically done because people at LO funds are way happier - that said I am sure you could. Not sure what you mean by 'leveraging' though... If you tell HR you have an ER offer at a bank they wont fast track you to the AC stage so just be careful about how you come across with that. 

M&A is less so of a feeder to L/S HFs, particularly SM funds. You can go to MMs but SMs seem to prefer ER. That said funds like AKO Capital were recruiting recently and they wanted someone with MA TMT experience from a top bank and ideally several years TMT buy-side experience. 

Good luck

  • Prospect in HF - Other
Aug 19, 2021 - 9:49am

How does AKO Capital compare to the other top L/S funds globally? And what would the comp/lifestyle/work be compared to the top LO funds you mentioned above?

Aug 19, 2021 - 11:38am

No idea how it compares to Baupost/Viking/Coatue etc but they're one of the well respected funds in Europe

Comp/lifestyle/work against LO funds would characterised as follows by me: 

  • Potentially better comp on good years but average may be worse
  • More stressful as it is a HF - more pressure to perform or get out
  • Work would be broadly but more short-term pressure to justify and perform given fees
  • Prospect in HF - Other
Aug 19, 2021 - 11:54am

Very interesting. So it is one of the best funds in Europe? 

In terms of the LO comp being better on average, that is surprising. I was under the impression that top SM HFs in Europe with stable asset bases would pay better on average. Again, same with the stress. I assumed the pressure to perform would be there regardless. 

Aug 19, 2021 - 12:02pm

Yes, I would classify it as such. 

When I say average I am thinking over a 10 year period where the average HF candidate is probably fired within the first 3-5 years, whereas the LO fund has almost 0 turnover. So while if you are a top performer at AKO/manage not to get fired you will likely earn more but the average person who does get canned will probably earn less than the LO option because they will only have been at the HF for a few years. 

Upside at the HFs is obviously better but that comes with massive volatility

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Aug 19, 2021 - 3:10pm

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