I had a number of questions about Citadel's global equities team because I recently advanced pretty far in the process there. There is a surprising lack of information on the fund given its overall influence on the finance world more broadly. Feel free to comment on any of the questions below so we can all get some good information on this fund together:
* What are indicative ranges for total compensation at the associate, senior associate, analyst level? (surprisingly difficult to find this information; though it varies, it would be helpful to know an illustrative number)
* How is Citadel perceived on the street versus (i) "Tiger Cubs" and well-known single-manager platforms (ii) other multi-managers (like Point72, BAM, Millennium) and (ii) roles at elite private equity firms (like Blackstone, KKR)? This is a bit of apples and oranges, but I want to get a sense for perceived selectivity and "prestige" even if others feel that this is the wrong thing to be focused on. Personally, I feel that the broadstrokes perception is Tiger Cubs > Megafund PE >= Citadel > all other multi-managers, but curious to hear what others think.
* When I look at ex-Citadel associates on LinkedIn, I have noticed a striking pattern of them going to work at funds started by senior folks that are ex-Citadel as well. Is it correct to assume that working there makes you successful down a certain path, but that it does narrow your path?
* I also tend to see that ex-Citadel funds tend not to perform anywhere near on par with Citadel, though the folks that leave all tend to be successful career-wise and often become PMs. Do people agree with this?
* I notice many people that work at great PE funds leave to work at Citadel but nobody at Citadel leaves to work at great PE funds. Why is this? Is this because of a perceived skill set deficit of working at Citadel (e.g., that they cannot pick up the dealmaking ability) or is it because the folks at Citadel end up liking their role and don't want to become dealmakers?
* Do you think people at Citadel generally like their lifestyles?
* Generally, most people at hedge funds do not go to business school but, in the event that someone were to be interested in that, I have heard that business schools tend to be biased against people that are "traders" or "short-term" in their investment horizons. How true is this? I have tended to observe strong b-school placement for ex-Citadel people (e.g., top 5 placement is very likely), but in talking to people they usually claim the opposite.
Citadel Global Equities
This was originally posted as a response by @Xaipe and has been formatted for this post
Just to share some first/second hand (but might not be perfectly accurate) info here.
Used to work at a multi-manager (Millennium/BAM/P72), and my PM back then was ex-Citadel and ex megafund PE.
Also had exp at megafund PE and single manager HF myself so think i could comment a bit.
Citadel Hedge Fund Salary
Pay back then was PM-driven. Depends on which team you are at global equities. Might have changed now.
Your promotion is tied to your performance in the tracking list. So if you don't hit some return you might stuck at sr.asso for a long time.
Citadel Fundamental Strategies
Global equities is market (beta) neutral strategy. So you need to really understand what it means here. High leverage, you might have 70-90 names in the portfolio, almost always short term focus (quarterly trading). Because even if there is no upcoming catalyst, you still have earnings. The tight risk means you can't really take long term view/volatility as much as let's say pershing square. so mostly quarterly trading game. For example, some multi manager might give you 4/8 stopping points, meaning once you lose 4% your portfolio will be cut by half, 8% means OUT. Citadel is looser than that don't worry.
The style decides that you need to care a lot about positioning, balancing etc. Most of the HF trading volume are comprised by these guys.
Citadel Compared to other Funds
I don't get this prestige ranking thing. In HF it's all about return, and citadel is a top notch place. To make apple to apple comparison, you can only compare the Global Equities teams with multi manager platform, which is Millennium, BAM, Point72 etc. These are the similar strategy (market neutral), and similar infrastructure/team structure.
That's why you will see PMs jumping a lot among these places (quick linkedin will show you a lot)
It is easier to be a PM at these places, and normally you have higher cuts too (millennium gives you 20% i think), but obv higher turnover rate.
For tiger cubs. These are old school net long HF (never market neutral). They might take long time to do research and DD for 1-10 ideas in a year, and the holding period is mostly >1 year value play.
Places like Viking have their long only funds too. Most people have PE background because the skill set is more transferable. (like PE style but in public market)
Life here will be more stable, and you also get to share the 2% mgmt fee which you don't at the multi-manager platform, which means even in a down year you will have bonus.
Downside is, it's normally more like PE 2.0, as in you will have VP, director etc above you whereas at Citadel you work with the PM directly. Also at tiger cubs it takes forever to be a PM
For mega fund PE it is not comparable. Although fundamental value guys do hire a lot from PE.
Rarely see people switch from hedge fund to pe because normally after a few years at HF, it is not practical to switch back to the similar level position at PE which requires significant deals experience (imagine 2 years at IBD, 3 years at a hedge fund, you think you can start as a sr asso/vp at PE? very hard).
Also mostly you see PE people switch to HF due to many reasons. However I do see some exceptions of HF --> PE. All at junior level and had previous PE exp.
Lifestyle at Citadel Global Equities
Life style can be tough at Citadel, but not going to be as bad as megafund PE, unless at earnings season.
You tend to get into the office around 7am since you have to trade closely to the market. 11-12 hours work at least which is not easy. Some teams could get worse but for the industry, it's already not bad.
Again it varies by teams
Citadel to Business School
I don't think you can generalize on this. If you are at Citadel, you must be a smart dude from good school with good grades. Then it all comes down to who you are and why mba and your career plan.
I can easily find you HF people getting in to H/S easily, and cases where top HF candidates got bloody rejection.
Take them with a grain of salt. Things may be different now.
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