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Comments (26)

Oct 17, 2017 - 10:45pm

Top, top, top in their space. It's very hard to know what your trajectory in commodities will be ex-ante so if you had any desire to be in ags or softs to begin with I would take the position in a heartbeat. Whether or not your entire career will be at Cargill, only time will tell, but it's a great place to start.

There are markets where others might be bigger (Bunge in oilseeds I think, Glencore in wheat ex-US), but nowhere so dominant across the board. Plus it's still private and orders of magnitude less likely to go under or be bought out than the rest of the ABCD.

Oct 18, 2017 - 1:20pm

I would jump on the opportunity as well. It's probably the best place to intern at, and you could definitely move to the paper side down the line with experience at Cargill (in the commo side, paper shops chase after people with phys experience, not the other way around). Don't forget this is only an internship.

Oct 18, 2017 - 1:11pm

If you want to work on the commodity trading space I would absolutely 100% without a doubt take the internship.

As many people on this site have said before, trading is not banking and exit opps are not your concern. Working to become a trader at a big shop is the ultimate opportunity you are after in the trading space. If you ever wanted to move into trading strictly paper then that is a very easy transition given your physical knowledge and experience trading paper and physical together.

As for moving out of softs, what would you want to move into?

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Best Response
Oct 23, 2017 - 3:17pm

Pros:
Ridiculous brand name, a great opportunity, their training scheme is streets ahead of other trading houses.
The name will get you in anywhere within Ags/Softs.
Transitioning to metals/energies externally etc is a lot harder but I have seen it done (Glencore/Trafi etc). I've seen people move to places like Optiver too.
Recent restructuring has improved their situation a lot.
Largest private company in the US if that's where you are based (brand name is less well known in Europe but still hugely respected within commodities.

Cons:
Very corporate, a lot of politics, far too many commercial staff and somewhat soft/slow moving. Pay slightly worse than some competitors.

Exit Ops:
As for exit ops - wide (especially within the company) you see so much of the supply chain, physical trading is effectively running a business, be it import/export business or any sort of industrial physical asset. Upward mobility is there but takes time and solid politics

Physical to Paper:
Paper trading (no idea why you would want to move into it) is a trickier move in the first instance - you will generally be expected to have a number of years of trading experience, and you likely wont be trading properly for a 1-3 years.

  • 7
Oct 24, 2017 - 9:30am

Currently employed at an ABCD so I think I can speak to this. I think if you're interested in commodities this is about as good an opportunity as you can get. The ABCD's are so entrenched in every aspect of the physical supply chain so the amount that you will learn extends far beyond just trading or merchandising. To echo what others have said, the reputation of these firms, especially Cargill, is tops. Exit ops from these firms vary. Moving to the paper side is entirely possible though it may be more lucrative in the long-term to remain in physical. It also may be worth mentioning that most of these firms have paper trading desks as well. Rapid advancement to a position where paper trading is the primary function is very doable but you **need ** to be open to the idea of relocation to areas that some may deem less desirable (i.e. obscure Midwest cities). Long story super long, it's a great opportunity and you should feel no regrets if you end up accepting. Congratulations!

Oct 24, 2017 - 3:37pm

I have a friend who took a commodity merchant internship at a similar company about a year ago and the job was entirely centered around trading in soft commodities, which he knew going in. The internship gave him reputable trading exposure going into recruiting season, and he has made progress towards landing fulltime jobs in trading harder commodities and also paper. He had a background in ag, but knew that he eventually wanted to move to harder commodities before taking the internship. From my understanding, a trading internship in soft commodities at a company of this reputation (Bunge, Cargill, etc.) was his best route to take towards eventually landing a job in harder commodities, given that he did not have a degree in finance or CS, etc.

Oct 24, 2017 - 11:27pm

GoodBread,

Yes, by "harder" commodities, I meant energy specifically on the international level. He went to a large state school in the midwest that has a great finance program and an even better CS program, meaning that a lot of the campus recruitment for trading jobs related to harder commodities and paper was directed at kids who were in one of these two programs. Furthermore, students outside of these two programs were often ineligible to apply for many of the trading internships of this type that were offered through career fairs. This friend was enrolled in the ag finance program, which addressed trading concepts on a level similar to that of the finance program, but with an agricultural concentration. A lot of the big name companies that trade softer commodities targeted students in this ag program and my friend knew that he wanted to work in energy down the road, so he applied for trading internships similar to that of the one that MC_Hammer is mentioning, and eventually landed one for the summer going into his senior year. Given that this internship was with a big name, he found that he was able to leverage his experience of trading in ag as a candidate for full time trading jobs in energy, come recruitment in the fall. In short, he knew that he wanted to work in energy from the beginning but saw this as a more realistic way to break in, given the dynamic of campus recruiting at this school.

Oct 24, 2017 - 8:48pm

To everyone that commented:

Thank you so much for the input, it definitely helped make a huge impact on my decision, I think I am going to take it. It sounds like a great opportunity and I am definitely interested in trading commodities which makes this even more desirable. My biggest concern was pigeonholing myself in trading if I decide after the internship isn't for me, but from what all of you have said, I will learn so much more and be able to apply these skills in so many other places. Thanks again to everyone that contributed!

Oct 24, 2017 - 11:35pm

Cargill Anyone? (Originally Posted: 02/25/2012)

Hey all, have an interview coming up with Cargill for a merchandiser/trader trainee dealing with Ag products. Was just wondering if any of you work with Cargill or have been through the interview process with them. I am very excited for this interview and just looking for any insight.

Do you work there? what division? How did you get started?

Tips or advice for my interview? Thanks everyone!

Oct 24, 2017 - 11:36pm

Where are you interviewing? I've traded a bit with most of the majors and Cargill is one of the easier ones to work with. I don't work their myself but I was at a conference with a long time trader out of tampa a few weeks back and she mentioned that their is a lot of mobility within the firm both laterally and upward (assuming you perform).

Oct 24, 2017 - 11:37pm

Phone interviewing for a position in Brampton Canada. I have heard Great things about Cargill and if you're willing to work, they are willing to move you up the chain if deserved. I have no problem with re-location, so hopefully this could be a start to a very exciting career for me.

Oct 24, 2017 - 11:39pm

That is awesome could you ask him about his experience with grain merchandising with Cargill when you see him again? If possible I would love to send him an email before my interview(Tuesday yikes!), just to get a better idea of what the job fully entails (more than just the advertised). Just trying to get any upper-hand I can on this interview. I have heard nothing but great things and am really wanting this position. I know I am competing with at least 6 others.

Oct 24, 2017 - 11:40pm

Cargill Energy (Originally Posted: 03/04/2010)

Just curious - Anybody have knowledge of culture/comp/etc?

 

Oct 24, 2017 - 11:46pm

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