Breaking In Finance

Hi! I'm a law student from Argentina who is slowly introducing himself into the world of finance by reading some blogs and watching YouTube videos.

Commonly, I wouldn't ask for help in planning my own career, but maybe it is something "particular" what I want to do and I want to know if it is accurate or it would be better to achieve my goals by taking a different way.

Moreover, as I don't know anyone who could bring me some advice, I will use this site to tell you a bit about me and ask some questions about an eventual career in finance for me.

First and foremost, I profoundly appreciate all the answers that will come in!

So, I'm 22 years old and I am in the final year of law school. Here in Argentina you go directly from high school to JD and you don't need a previous bachelor's degree. It takes 5/6 years here to earn an "Abogado" degree (JD Equivalent).

As I said before, my interest in finance highly increased during the last year and my long term goal is to work for an important Hedge Found in the USA.

So these are the diferent paths I could choose and the questions I have:

Path 1:

JD -> Master In Finance -> MBA -> Investment Bank -> HF / PE

(End of my studies: Between 6 and 8 years from now)

Explaination:

I have the opportunity to do a 2 years' Master in Finance in my country immediately after graduating from law school while working in a top law firm in my country in the area of capital markets (I know it may be strange that a lawyer with a non-quantitative or business degree is able to do this kind of Master immediately after graduating, but it is allowed in my country). The subjects I will study are:

. Financial Accounting (Core Course)

. Probability and Statistics (Core Course)

Corporate finance (Core Course)

. Capital Markets Instruments (Core Course)

. Futures, Options and Swaps (Core Course)

. Business Valuation (Core Course)

-

. Monetary Policy, Banks and FX (Elective)

. Macro-finance (Elective)

. Access to the International financial market (Elective)

. Macroinvesting (Elective)

. Corporate finance under asymmetric information (Elective)

Portfolio Management (Elective)

. Introduction to Trading, currencies and interest rates (Elective)

. Agricultural commodities market (Elective)

. Financial models in Excel (Elective)

After finishing my Master in Finance in Argentina while working as a lawyer, I would go for an MBA in the USA in order to starting my career in an Investment Bank there, in one of the areas I'm interested in (Ordered by interest: 1) Trading, 2) Portfolio Management, 3) Asset Management, 4) Investment Banking. However, I'm also interested in being a Broker).

I'm a bit doubtful about the fact that the subjects taught in the master may cover the topics only in an introductory way and that, with it and the MBA, it won't be enough knowledge to enter into the competitive world of finance. That's why I listed the different subjects I will study there.

Questions:

  1. Do you consider this knowledge is enough to enter into the world of finance or do you think that the lack of an undergraduate degree in economics / business / a quantitative science will difficult my future incorporation into an Investment Bank / HF? (For example the lack of taking a course in Econometrics)
  2. How relevant do you consider that the GPA in my JD, Master In Finance and MBA will be for obtaining a job in an important Investment Bank?
  3. Do you consider that the knowledge acquired in the Master In Finance + MBAwould be enough for going for a Master In Quantitative Finance in order to acquire some technical skills for working in the area of Trading, for example? 
  4. Do you consider that, with my background, a Master In Quantitative Finance would be essential for working in the area of Trading?

Clarifications:

  • As I read it is a very necessary tool in the world of finance, I'm also planing to do some courses about programming in Python
  • The university where I will do the Master In Finance allows me to attend to different classes after obtaining my Master's degree in order to study subjects that I didn't study during the previous years (such as Econometrics or other quantitative subjects)
  • No GMAT is needed for the Master In Finance. They teach candidates with non-quantitative or business background the essentials of maths, accounting and economics before starting.

Path 2: 

JD -> Economics / Maths / Computer Science / Data Science -> MBA / MSc in Quantitative Fincance / MSc in Finance -> Investment Bank -> HF

(End of my studies: Between 7 and 10 years from now)

Explaination:

I'm not sure if I should go for a Master in Finance after graduating or go for a new undergraduate degree in Economics / Maths / Computer Science / Data Science in my country (or, hardly and much less probable, in the USA) and then doing an MBA, a Master In Quantitative Finance or a Master in Finance in the USA in order to enter into the world of Investment Banks in the areas I'm interested in.

Question:

  1. Which one of this four undergraduate degrees and three masters do you think would be the best and the worst options in order to be a Trader or a Broker and basically operating in the Financial Markets?

Clarification:

  • Another detail about the Argentininan educational system is that we have "Public Universities" which it means that you obtain your undergraduate degree for FREE and you don't need to pay anything to the institution in order to study there. It is pretty common here that some people have more than one undergraduate degree, obtaining the second one while working (in my case, it would be in the law firm I mentioned before)

Other General Questions:

  1. How easy do you think that It will be to enter into a Back Ofice position (such as Compliance / Legal) after passing the US Bar Exam (i.e., with an LLM), in order to passing, then, to a Front Office position in one of the areas I'm interested in (i.e., Investment Banking)?
  2. What do you think it is the best / easiest area of an Investment Bank to enter into (from those I mentioned before) with a foreign JD + US LLM?
  3. What about the CFA, FINRA or others? How useful do you think this exams would be for me in order to obtain my dreamt job in any of the paths presented?
  4. Do you think that the age of -30 is too young and the age of +40 is too old for entering into a Hedge Found?
  5. Do you think I should consider other options outside the two paths presented? If the answer is yes, please leave a comment with your ideas!

I profoundly appreciate any clarification about concepts that you notice I don't understand and I apologise for any mistake made by writing in English.

Thank you very much for helping me!

Comments (1)

Jan 10, 2022 - 11:38pm

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