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Comments (32)

  • Investment Analyst in HF - Other
Aug 10, 2020 - 9:43pm

I'd be interested in hearing what people that have worked at more than one platform think.

All-in pay unlikely varies across the big platforms for juniors as they are relative commodities. Until you can independently generate, analyze and execute differentiated ideas, you're replaceable (and often even if you can, you're replaceable).

As you pointed out, the group is key. Across platforms, PMs can negotiate different deals (risk, payout, etc.). That being said, my understanding is that with respect to risk, MLP has a reputation for being on the tighter end and SAC on the wider end of risk. Citadel could give you more capital, but the payouts could be lower. I think MLP has a reputation for having highest payouts (%) but seems like Citadel offers higher bases. Most of these guys tend to pass many expenses on to investors, which helps overall comp. Most are close to all-cash comp. Don't think the big platforms make groups bear netting.

Ultimately, again, this is group dependent. If your PM is a big dick, he/she can demand better terms: run looser risk, higher payouts, etc. at most platforms, because these platforms all realize that PM can take his balls and go play elsewhere. It's asymmetric for platforms to add a high quality PM that can generate an uncorrelated stream of P&L and the market is relatively efficient.

If you put a gun to my head, I'd say today Citadel is the most prestigious, given their performance, reputation for hiring / firing / paying, Ken's success, etc. But if you look around, you'll see people jump from Citadel to other platforms and vice versa, likely because of what I mentioned above re deals. At a certain point prestige doesn't pay the bills, money does.

Again, not based on experience but reputation, culturally MLP seems like it's more silo'd than the other platforms because it's more their business model (i.e., you don't want to deal with the administrative hassle of running your own fund, so you plug into MLP's system and run your own thing under their rules). I can't really speak to the collegiality of other platforms as I'm not aware of any having reputations for being moreso, but I'd say most are probably more open in terms of collaborating across strategies.

Most Helpful
Aug 10, 2020 - 10:44pm

Comparing multi-managers at the "Junior Analyst" level is pointless. At the end of the day, working at any of these platforms would be an incredible career opportunity that isn't as easy to come by as some people on these forums like to suggest (don't get me started on the "single PM is superior" pandering by people who've never worked in the HF industry). For what it's worth I've worked in both MM and single-PM shops.

As a Junior Analyst the most important consideration is solely on the team and PM you'd be working for and learning from. At that stage you want to maximize your ability to learn about how to follow an investment process and generate consistent alpha since that's something you won't learn from books or reading interview guides and only experience can teach you. Most sell-side guys who enter the buy-side come in thinking they know everything and end up failing as Senior Analysts or PMs because they never took the time to build a foundation.

The decision should be incredibly simple - you choose the "platform" with the best PM and track record and which one has the best learning opportunity (even if that means less responsibility at first - don't rush into "investing" when you know jackshit). Nothing else like "prestige" matters and only those who don't work at HF even talk about dumb shit like that. Culture at multi-manager is irrelevant as again, it's 100% depedent on the PM. At any of these funds you spend 99% interacting with your team and no one else from the firm.

So, for anyone else on this forum, stop asking and comparing "platforms" and first try to get an interview at either one of these, and if you're lucky enough to interview at more than one, spend your time comparing the PM, the team, their investment process, and their track record.

Aug 10, 2020 - 11:32pm
Investment Analyst in HF - Other:

I respectfully disagree with a couple of points made by KingAlpha, a second year associate.

Prestige matters. The business is cliquey. Your lineage matters. Big name funds get better management access / resources. I don't think the single manager vs. multi-manager debate is as pronounced in the real world as it is on here, because over time you'll see there are pros and cons.

It sounds like KingAlpha works at a platform where there's a less collegial culture, i.e. pods are super cutthroat and don't share info. There are places where people are happy to help and others where they "spend 99% interacting with [their] team and no one else from the firm."

Jesus, how daft are you and why do you sound like such a tool. I hope to god you don't really work in the industry. Stop referring to me as "2nd year associate" - it's not my actual title but a layover the WSO has tagged on my account that I haven't used actively in years.

First, he's asking about comparing the top multi managers. Everything you listed out - access to management, resources - is virtually the same at all the top MMs. The business is cliquey? What are you on about. By the time you're in a position where the specific platform differences affects you - e.g. as a damn PM - no one gives a shit about some "clique" or what "lineage you're from". The only thing that matters is P&L performance and track record.

I have to believe this guy is posting anonymously because he's a troll or simply retarded and I feel sorry for the team he works for. And no I did not work at a cutthroat platform fund nor do I currently. In fact I worked a fund you would call the most "prestigious". The differences in platform funds has diminished considerably over the past several years. Yes, there are differences in risk limits and payouts. But otherwise they have become increasingly similar. And yes, that means places like Citadel have become more "cut-throat" and I know countless PM/teams let go as they would be let go any where else.

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Aug 10, 2020 - 11:55pm
Investment Analyst in HF - Other:

What's with the ad hominems? Insecure much?

I can tell you are inexperienced by your language and thought process.

Just signed a PM deal with a platform, coming from a single manager that considers a Citadel seat low quality, but who cares if I work in the industry - as you said, I'm posting anonymously on an internet forum.

I'm generally always open to coffee but don't think we'd be a fit, and based on what you've said I don't think you'd be a fit with anyone I interact with. Good luck.

There is so much wrong with this comment that I don't even know where to begin. But I think the folks on this forum are smart enough to realize it without me having to point it out.

This explains everything though. I hate to make early judgment calls but if I'm brutally honest I don't think you'll last more than 12 months. Hopefully that Analyst role is still open at your previous single PM fund that considers Citadel low quality seat. Good luck ;)

Aug 11, 2020 - 7:31pm

Just gonna shoot my shot here...are you down to have a coffee chat? Looking to join as an Analyst at a platform

  • 1
Aug 13, 2020 - 3:26pm

There's only one reason that Citadel has become the go-to place in the past 2 years...and it's because of the multi-year signing guarantees. They have absolutely gone crazy with them to the extent that they can hire almost anybody they want, because in this business everybody has a reservation price, and it's not actually that big of a number for Citadel.

Feb 3, 2021 - 11:36am

I disagree - I think MLP has become the go-to-place, at least for PMs which is the most important one anyways. MLP hands down offers much better terms than Citadel, higher payouts, no deferred comp, and less stringent factor risk limits which can significantly impede your investment strategy. They also don't require the same bullshit administrative and process work that Citadel requires (uploading earnings previews, etc.). I think Citadel used to be the top but I've noticed MLP significantly improving over the past 1-2 years with better management and leadership changes. They are also raising more permanent capital which I think will have a bigger impact than some on this forum realize.

  • Prospect in Consulting
Jan 26, 2021 - 11:51pm

May not be the right thread, but would it make sense for a MBB (consulting) manager to join one of these HFs at the associate level? Guessing total comp would be relatively similar to start.

  • Investment Manager in HF - Other
Feb 1, 2021 - 10:54am

There is the "does it make sense" and the comp piece which are pretty different. 

Let's hit the easy one; comp is higher at these places (significantly so if you prove your value). Honestly manager at MBB is closer to entry level (or less). Not trying to say anything bad about MBB it is just a completely different comp path (AND risk profile). 

As for "does it make sense?" Well that depends a lot more on what you are looking for, what risk profile you want, what you enjoy doing, etc etc. Would it make sense for most MBB managers to move? No, it is a completely different job. Are there people in that position that would actually do great at a HF? Yes. 

So if you are asking if it makes sense from comp, then it is really just a risk profile question. Aside from that would need to know more. 

Jan 28, 2021 - 9:47pm

FWIW Ive worked at one and worked with several team members from all.

They seem to generally have a more positive view of P72 re: collegiality, somewhat looser risk, training and development for juniors and knowledge sharing. Between MLP and Citadel I think your mileage varies - Id say based on my limited network on average people think Global Equities>MLP>Surveyor.

My sense is that there is a lot more mothership BS at Citadel - sending them your earnings previews and call notes and perhaps some front running at P72 and Citadel but not meaningfully at MLP. This is just based on the suspicions and takes of limited participants. Also it seems the view is that Citadel is ahead in data/infrastructure modestly and dangles big pay numbers but that MLP is more entrepreneurial for a PM and more like having one, very demanding but well resources investor in your standalone fund rather than at Citadel more like working for a big fund, more visibility and competition between juniors who cover similar stocks.

As a PM I'd probably prefer MLP - because they seem more open to having your own office where you want it and having your own entity - if you want to feel like you run your own fund. but as a junior it's all about PM and terms. You might get better training/development at Citadel vs P72 but might have more onerous claw backs and such. Also I get the sense equity L/S is less central for MLP than the other two. 

There could be inaccuracies in my assessment, but it's based on fairly consistent themes. For the most part everyone hates the one they worked at most recently (feeling they got screwed in term and claw backs.... anything other than self error right?)

Feb 1, 2021 - 9:55pm

Seems like Citadel has the best tech. MLP is starting to build out a good infra team, but that will take time. 

Any thoughts on Centiva or Graham? 

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