Best way to get into quant HF from undergrad?

Hey everyone,

I am a senior finishing up my undergrad at a target school and I would like to a find a job where I can develop and trade my own quantitative based strategies, preferably at a hedge fund. I have experience developing and backtesting strategies that actually work and show solid returns with low drawdowns, good sharpe, etc. Stuff that a HF could actually use and generate profit from. The problem is that I have been working on this all in my spare time and can't really convey my knowledge properly on a resume.

In the best case, I am looking for a small hedge fund with an entrepreneurial environment with little bureaucracy. I know most funds want PHDs, or at least MS candidates, but I am looking for advice on how I can make myself stand out and at least get my foot in the door for an interview?

Thanks for reading

Comments (10)


i'd include a little summary/stats about the strategies you've developed and include with any resumes you send out. esp if you have a quant degree this could really take you far ... feel free to PM me to discuss further.

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look into Jane Street. if you have the basic high GPA from a target in a quant-heavy major, high standardized test scores, you can get an interview. but for quant trading, this is where it just begins, as interview questions can get beastly. you separate yourself by doing well in these interviews and acing all the brain teasers and tough mental math they throw at you.


...i think you will have a tough time getting a job running money right away, but if you really have developed these algo strategies then I believe you will have no problem getting a job as an analyst at a top-flight hedge fund if you are tenacious. From there you can angle your way into a PM job.

Many older guys who are partners at funds but dont really understand algorithmic trading will salivate over the mention of your out of the box, ready-to-go, trading systems. I think this is one case where well-researched cold-calling could actually get you a job. Get the email address formats of some hedge funds, do some digging/googling to get some names, and email them what you said above with some more specifics...really lay it on thick and make it sound like you spent most of your college years locked up in your dorm developing automated trading strategies....i bet if you send out enough of them somebody will bite.


you might want to maintain a blog or website with some white papers... not really at the source code level- and maybe keep some things close to your chest. Litterman and the team at GSAM are past masters of this- their $140, 620 page book in quantitative portfolio management (2003) didn't really get into any proprietary techniques or research methodology.

One blog that comes to mind is Graham Giller's site (he's an Oxford PhD in physics and former researcher on Morgan Stanley's proprietary trading desk)


Thanks for all the advice guys. Any idea on how get a job running money right away? Go the prop trading route or coldcall fund PMs and pitch them a few ideas? I would probably be laughed right off the phone, but maybe itll work


don't go 'prop shop' route. send your stuff to some quant funds and/or cold call them. you won't get to run money right away but you might get a job that lets you do that one year from now


If you can do well with your strategies...why not trade your own money (if you have any)? I think nothing speaks more than demonstrating you can make hundreds of percents of your money using different strategies and instruments over an extended period of time.


I agree, but I dont think its best to do so right out of college. Lots of loan debt, and even if I had 100K in savings, a 25% return would not be enough to live on. Besides, I would rather spend a year or two learning and getting experience about the industry.


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