Why Did You Choose to Pursue Finance?

Will Hunting's picture
Rank: King Kong | 1,826

Or did you go into the industry to pay off college debt quickly, get a fat pay check, live in NYC and think you were going to become a millionaire.

And for the college students: Did your parents make you choose the finance major, or did you actually want to study it because you enjoy it. (or are you solely doing it for the money)

Seems to me like everyone i have talked to (both student and in the industry) have entered the industry for the money or the possibility of becoming a millionaire.

Why did you pursue finance?

For students or those pursuing a change of career - this can be a serious question. Below is some commentary and advice from users who faced this same question.

Money Isn't Everything

While money is the first thing that jumps to minds of many users - some users caution against pursuing finance with money as your sole motivation.

User @BSDBANKER shared:

BSDBANKER:

The "Money" incentive only goes so far...Yes, it will help you sleep at night and take a lot of financial stresses off your shoulders, however if you are not passionate and enjoy your day-to-day job you will quickly find yourself being miserable.

Granted a job in finance is one of the few jobs that will return the money spent on higher education. Be passionate and love what you do and the money will come. The money is nice, but is not the sole nor the primary reason for my decision to enter the world of finance.

Many Users Pursued Finance because they Enjoyed the Work....

User @D M, a real estate associate, explained:

D M - Real Estate Associate:

I think it also depends on what you're doing. I can see someone (hypothetically) working 70 hours per week as a PM at a hedge fund and enjoying the hell out of it. The analytical nature of it is so intriguing, and that's what gets to me. Similarly, I could see the college athlete or poker playing type type loving the trading game, going for that adrenaline rush. You're also not working 100 hours per week 99% of the time unless you are in, say, one of the top IB groups in the world.

@SalGr, an equity research associate, likes the entrepreneurial nature:

SalGr - Equity Research Associate:

If I wanted just money I would stay in the family business. Financial markets are my passion. Plus becoming a trader is like becoming an enterpreneuer,your pay is related to your performance (unlike many other fields). Oh, and you dont have to wait till you you get 50 to get paid well...

User @BSDBANKER shared:

BSDBANKER:

Completely agree...its much more than the money for people who are passionate and successful. ITS ALL ABOUT PLAYING THE GAME.

@baddebt88, a sales and trading analyst, likes the meritocracy of finance / Wall Street based careers:

baddebt88 - Sales and Trading Analyst:

I have wanted to be a trader since freshman year of high school. I always thought I would be a chemistry researcher but then realized what a clusterf*ck the grant process was. After that I thought maybe being a lawyer would be sick. Law and Order looked pretty boss. I realized after a short internship at a law firm that most lawyers are miserable. Being on the math team, I came across a math problem that used an options based question. Googled it, got real interested, got an internship at a trading firm in high school, absolutely loved it, and haven't doubted my decision since.

The biggest draw about trading to me is that its the one thing (other than pro poker) where its about about performance. Your pay/rank is directly dependent on your production. Considering I am an immigrant with a chip on my shoulder, there is nothing else I would do.

While @D M touched on why some people actually like hedge fund / markets oriented work, @monkeyc shared that fun part of investment banking comes later down the line for some people:

monkeyc:

I think there is a point (SVP/Director) [where you have fun as an investment banker]. Once you actually have clients of your own, and an team to run. Some people just love running and closing deals. The problem is not really that there is no rewarding components, it's that they come much later in your career and only accrue to the few that make it up a pyramid that doesn't really promote on merit.

... But for Some, the Money was Critical

While some users find some level of enjoyment in their work @TropicalFruit shared that their sole motivation was the money:

TropicalFruit:

I was never passionate about anything (besides a generic interest in anything quantitative), but since I was a kid I've always wanted to be obscenely rich. I grew up in a frugal-ass household where my mom always complained about lack of money, and my dad prob makes less than a 1st year analyst on the street. I guess my mom's complaining instilled in me a strong desire to get rich. Sure I'll probably never be a multimillionaire, but it's the possibility that keeps me going. I couldn't work as an engineer knowing that the most I'll ever make is around $150k/year (unless I start my own business) while a dumber friend of mine is making millions b/c he chose finance.

I find finance interesting because of the money. If finance paid the same as engineering and engineering paid the same as finance, then I sure as hell wouldn't give a flying fuck about finance and would be on EngineeringOasis instead. If you're genuinely passionate about finance, good for you, but please spare me the "you shouldn't be in finance for the money" bullshit. If all jobs paid the same salary, I'd become a music producer or something.

Why Finance Interview Question?

While it is important to figure out why you are personally pursuing finance, sometimes that answer isn't what you should say if you are interviewing. Check out our guide to answering this question here.

Decided to Pursue a Wall Street Career? Learn How to Network like a Master.

Inside the WSO Finance networking guide, you'll get a comprehensive, all-inclusive roadmap for maximizing your networking efforts (and minimizing embarrassing blunders). This info-rich book is packed with 71 pages of detailed strategies to help you get the most of your networking, including cold emailing templates, questions to ask in interviews, and action steps for success in navigating the Wall Street networking process.

Networking Guide

Comments (86)

May 21, 2011

The "Money" incentive only goes so far...Yes, it will help you sleep at night and take a lot of financial stresses off your shoulders, however if you are not passionate and enjoy your day-to-day job you will quickly find yourself being miserable.

Granted a job in finance is one of the few jobs that will return the money spent on higher education. Be passionate and love what you do and the money will come.

The money is nice, but is not the sole nor the primary reason for my decision to enter the world of finance.

May 21, 2011

People who do it only for the money probably won't last very long

May 21, 2011

Finance is pretty cool. Not something I'm passionate about, but I can stand it.

That being said, I'll be honest - I'm doing it for the money.

May 21, 2011
Beef:

Finance is pretty cool. Not something I'm passionate about, but I can stand it.

That being said, I'll be honest - I'm doing it for the money.

Exactly my sentiments as well.

If I was doing what I really liked, I would still be a bartender down the block from where I grew up. Owning a house someday is worth the tradeoff. I do pity the people who get caught up in the money thing past a certain point though, and when I make enough to invest and live off of passive income, I'm OUT.

May 21, 2011
UFOinsider:

If I was doing what I really liked, I would still be a bartender down the block from where I grew up. Owning a house someday is worth the tradeoff. I do pity the people who get caught up in the money thing past a certain point though, and when I make enough to invest and live off of passive income, I'm OUT.

Does it really have to be so black-and-white? Couldn't you own a bar down the block from where you grew up? You might make some decent money and do something awesome...

Learn More

Side-by-side comparison of top modeling training courses + exclusive discount through WSO here.

May 21, 2011

I actually am really interested in helping companies create value and produce valuable goods. I also really enjoy thinking about finance (ie: using financial tools to find out what the optimal capital structure is and ways to create value through synergies and reducing agency problems). </toolish rant>

    • 1
May 21, 2011
Schwarzmanegger:

I actually am really interested in helping companies create value and produce valuable goods. I also really enjoy thinking about finance (ie: using financial tools to find out what the optimal capital structure is and ways to create value through synergies and reducing agency problems). </toolish rant>

That's a great interview answer... see if that holds up after you spend some time in the office... People do it for the money, some enjoy it more than others, but let's not be ridiculous... no one spends 100 hours a week unless it's for the money. You would have a hard time asking me to play golf or watch sports 100 hours a week and I love both of those past times...

May 21, 2011
rufiolove:

That's a great interview answer... see if that holds up after you spend some time in the office... People do it for the money, some enjoy it more than others, but let's not be ridiculous... no one spends 100 hours a week unless it's for the money. You would have a hard time asking me to play golf or watch sports 100 hours a week and I love both of those past times...

I think it also depends on what you're doing. I can see someone (hypothetically) working 70 hours per week as a PM at a hedge fund and enjoying the hell out of it. The analytical nature of it is so intriguing, and that's what gets to me. Similarly, I could see the college athlete or poker playing type type loving the trading game, going for that adrenaline rush. Im not sure what a good IB link would be, but I'm sure there's one (receiving anal?).

You're also not working 100 hours per week 99% of the time unless you are in, say, one of the top IB groups in the world.

OP: There are certain parts of it that interest me more than others, but I want/need to learn all of it to give myself the most knowledge and best view of whatever I'm looking at. Same goes with Accounting, Econ, Math, History, English, etc.

    • 1
Jun 4, 2013
Schwarzmanegger:

I actually am really interested in helping companies create value and produce valuable goods. I also really enjoy thinking about finance (ie: using financial tools to find out what the optimal capital structure is and ways to create value through synergies and reducing agency problems).

+1

May 21, 2011

my mom wanted me to become a doctor.
I didnt feel like going to school for years so i chose finance...

May 21, 2011

My parents forced me into engineering. I hated it and I was average at best so I went where my skills were better suited. It can actually be fairly interesting if you're doing it for the right reasons. That said, finance is a waypoint and not a destination for me.

N.B. Being a "millionaire" is pretty standard bro. The average home price in my city is just a hair under that so I guess everyone's a millionaire. The money is fine in finance but it's not NBA/Start-the-next-facebook/Saudi Royalty kinda money. It's just above average.

"Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to become the means by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of other men. Blood, whips and guns or dollars."

May 21, 2011
Independent Gestion:

Saudi Royalty kinda money.

Arab money son :D

I'm going into finance because I like it. I considered becoming a surgeon like my father, and for a while decided that this is what I wanted to do and actually liked it, but then I realised all the meaningless memorization and how too extraneously detailed it was..definitely not for me.

So it's not the money for me. I always have people asking me why I chose such a horrible career path (in terms of hours) to focus on when I already have all the money I could ever ask for

Greed is Good.

May 21, 2011
Independent Gestion:

My parents forced me into engineering. I hated it and I was average at best so I went where my skills were better suited. It can actually be fairly interesting if you're doing it for the right reasons. That said, finance is a waypoint and not a destination for me.

N.B. Being a "millionaire" is pretty standard bro. The average home price in my city is just a hair under that so I guess everyone's a millionaire. The money is fine in finance but it's not NBA/Start-the-next-facebook/Saudi Royalty kinda money. It's just above average.

ever heard of hedge fund managers?

"The right to have children should be a marketable commodity, bought and traded by individuals but absolutely limited by the state."--Kenneth Boulding

May 21, 2011
OnTheTrack:
Independent Gestion:

My parents forced me into engineering. I hated it and I was average at best so I went where my skills were better suited. It can actually be fairly interesting if you're doing it for the right reasons. That said, finance is a waypoint and not a destination for me.

N.B. Being a "millionaire" is pretty standard bro. The average home price in my city is just a hair under that so I guess everyone's a millionaire. The money is fine in finance but it's not NBA/Start-the-next-facebook/Saudi Royalty kinda money. It's just above average.

ever heard of hedge fund managers?

You do realize that it's only the top ~50-100 HF managers who are making ridiculous money (50 mm+). That's like saying I want to be in the NBA. If it happens it happens but WSO has ~43,000 members who all think they're going to be the next Soros/Paulson/Cohen. They have a name for that... it's called delusions of grandeur and it's a symptom of alot of psychological issues.

"Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to become the means by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of other men. Blood, whips and guns or dollars."

May 21, 2011

Interesting thread. Ever since high school, I have always wanted to be a trader. Although money is a big reason for in wanting to get into trading, I a do find the subject quite fascinating .

Here is a video of former Morgan Stanley CEO John Mack talking about the financial crisis to a group of students at Wharton.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R9sQtmPAYO0
My favorite part of the video is were he says that even when Morgan Stanley was about to go bankrupt, he would rather be running Morgan Stanley then sitting on a beach.

For the super successful people in the industry they aren't in it for the money, rather the game.

May 21, 2011
jimz:

Interesting thread. Ever since high school, I have always wanted to be a trader. Although money is a big reason for in wanting to get into trading, I a do find the subject quite fascinating .

Here is a video of former Morgan Stanley CEO John Mack talking about the financial crisis to a group of students at Wharton.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R9sQtmPAYO0
My favorite part of the video is were he says that even when Morgan Stanley was about to go bankrupt, he would rather be running Morgan Stanley then sitting on a beach.

For the super successful people in the industry they aren't in it for the money, rather the game.

Completely agree...its much more than the money for people who are passionate and successful. ITS ALL ABOUT PLAYING THE GAME

May 21, 2011

If I wanted just money I would stay in the family business.Financial markets are my passion.Plus becoming a trader is like becoming an enterpreneuer,your pay is related to your performance (unlike many other fields).Oh,and you dont have to wait till you you get 50 to get paid well...

jimz:

Here is a video of former Morgan Stanley CEO John Mack talking about the financial crisis to a group of students at Wharton.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R9sQtmPAYO0
My favorite part of the video is were he says that even when Morgan Stanley was about to go bankrupt, he would rather be running Morgan Stanley then sitting on a beach.

For the super successful people in the industry they aren't in it for the money, rather the game.

EXACTLY

May 21, 2011

I switched majors a bunch of time and landed on finance because I found finance interesting. I still do. I got in the biz because I'm interested in it, but passion doesn't pay the bills. If money weren't an object I'd be a professor of history or an archaeologist.

May 21, 2011
Virginia Tech 4ever:

I switched majors a bunch of time and landed on finance because I found finance interesting. I still do. I got in the biz because I'm interested in it, but passion doesn't pay the bills. If money weren't an object I'd be a professor of history or an archaeologist.

So, I take it you don't by the philosophy that you should choose the career that you'd do if money wasn't an object? What about the rest of you guys?

May 23, 2011
econ:
Virginia Tech 4ever:

I switched majors a bunch of time and landed on finance because I found finance interesting. I still do. I got in the biz because I'm interested in it, but passion doesn't pay the bills. If money weren't an object I'd be a professor of history or an archaeologist.

So, I take it you don't by the philosophy that you should choose the career that you'd do if money wasn't an object? What about the rest of you guys?

If I really have a choice from the very beginning, I hope I can learn to be a classical music conductor. Great music, artistic working environment, traveling around and making the music sounds great without actually making any sound.

May 21, 2011

I do think it is interesting subject and I enjoy it a lot. that being said I probably wouldn't do it if the pay off wasn't so nice.

May 21, 2011
Freshcut:

I do think it is interesting subject and I enjoy it a lot. that being said I probably wouldn't do it if the pay off wasn't so nice.

Exactly. I feel since my interest are so varied so that I enjoy most professions, to an extent, that I've convinced myself that I enjoy finance the most.

Best Response
May 21, 2011

I was never passionate about anything (besides a generic interest in anything quantitative), but since I was a kid I've always wanted to be obscenely rich. I grew up in a frugal-ass household where my mom always complained about lack of money, and my dad prob makes less than a 1st year analyst on the street. I guess my mom's complaining instilled in me a strong desire to get rich. Sure I'll probably never be a multimillionaire, but it's the possibility that keeps me going. I couldn't work as an engineer knowing that the most I'll ever make is around $150k/year (unless I start my own business) while a dumber friend of mine is making millions b/c he chose finance.

I find finance interesting because of the money. If finance paid the same as engineering and engineering paid the same as finance, then I sure as hell wouldn't give a flying fuck about finance and would be on EngineeringOasis instead. If you're genuinely passionate about finance, good for you, but please spare me the "you shouldn't be in finance for the money" bullshit. If all jobs paid the same salary, I'd become a music producer or something.

    • 6
May 21, 2011

It's not about the money, it's about creating a launchpad for the Forbes 400.

May 21, 2011

I didn't know how well portfolio management paid when I started investing before college, I just knew I enjoyed investing. That's why I'm studying for the CFA and planning a move to equity research or asset management.

Although my skill set might transfer more believably to lev fin or restructuring (I'm in credit risk), I'm not networking to make that transfer. No amount of money is enough for me to do banking or PE, I started for a pure interest in equity research/ portfolio management and that's what I'm going to try for. Thankfully that area of finance can pay handsomely too. Tbh, part of the reason investing sparked my genuine interest was seeing wealth grow, though.

May 21, 2011
RiskyBizness:

I didn't know how well portfolio management paid when I started investing before college, I just knew I enjoyed investing.

That was exactly how I was when it came to trading. Fortunately the market was pretty easy to trade back then, 05-07, so I thought I was "really good" and had a gift or something haha. Then after I saw a BB trading floor for the first time I was hooked it was like crack I couldn't shake the trading bug even if I wanted to. I have other passions but markets are number 1- they bring the best and worst out of everyone.

Learn More

Side-by-side comparison of top modeling training courses + exclusive discount through WSO here.

May 21, 2011

I have wanted to be a trader since freshman year of high school. I always thought I would be a chemistry researcher but then realized what a clusterf*ck the grant process was. After that I thought maybe being a lawyer would be sick. Law and Order looked pretty boss. I realized after a short internship at a law firm that most lawyers are miserable. Being on the math team, I came across a math problem that used an options based question. Googled it, got real interested, got an internship at a trading firm in high school, absolutely loved it, and haven't doubted my decision since.

The biggest draw about trading to me is that its the one thing (other than pro poker) where its about about performance. Your pay/rank is directly dependent on your production. Considering I am an immigrant with a chip on my shoulder, there is nothing else I would do.

May 21, 2011

I like it enough to put up with the bullshit and get a sweet paycheck.

May 21, 2011

I always wanted to be a financier mostly because of the money.
Somehow I got lost in the middle and ended up studying engineering. I really hated it.
Then I met a banker (from JPM), he told me about his job and how he hated it. I loved what he described, so I networked my way to a finance internship and I liked it.
From all the things i could do for a living, the one I like the most is finance. Sometimes doing all those pitchbooks might get boring.
To be honest, over here (EM) the money in finance isn't too great. I could be making more working as an engineer or a doctor (but i'd have to stick my finger into rather ugly peoples holes).
I also like wearing a suit : )
Finance is a fun place to be if you're good at everything. You get to do and to see lots of different things.
And YES I LOVE FINANCE.

May 21, 2011

my dad made his career in project finance so I had a good deal of exposure to the industry growing up. that said, my parents never pressured me to follow in his footsteps. as a little kid the thought of being "a business man" always appealed to me. (that and hoisting the Stanely Cup as a Devil's player - I had to settle for a homemade version wrapped in tinfoil).

I had a great intro to business class in high school which made me breathe a sigh of relief that I actually found the career I was pursuing interesting and did well in the class. since coming to college I've been fortunate enough to have a few solid internships with people I really enjoyed working with. I'm sure my SA experience coming up will be no different (I hope).

May 21, 2011

I honestly think that it is different at different points in your life. When you are young and just out of college it is the money that draws you to finance. When you are a bit into your career its about that next better job or title. A good ways into your job progression it becomes less about the money and prestige and more about the game. Last but not least at the end of your run its about looking back and saying to yourself, damn I made some serious bank but nothing compares to the time I did (insert something memorable here). Its natural human progression for ones outlook on life to change as they get older.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays

Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne

May 21, 2011

i wanted to be an astronaut and then some d-bag said i was too fat. which led me to WSO a week later.

    • 2
May 21, 2011

I really enjoy my business classes, I loved financial accounting etc. and I'm good at the classes, my business minor GPA is a little shy of a 4.0, I like finance because there are so many possible paths.

May 21, 2011

I really enjoy my business classes, I loved financial accounting etc. and I'm good at the classes, my business minor GPA is a little shy of a 4.0, I like finance because there are so many possible paths.

May 21, 2011

Fin (like the flipper) - ann (like the girl's name) - c (like the snake sss)

...is how I pronounce it.

May 21, 2011

i always detested people just spouting off their opinions on shit [try listening to women talk to each other, I swear to god nothing actually gets said], and finance was the one industry where I am forced to back up my (informed) opinion with a giant bet. the cash is nice too, but that thrill of watching future events play out when you have money on the line is irreplaceable

May 21, 2011
syntheticshit:

i always detested people just spouting off their opinions on shit [try listening to women talk to each other, I swear to god nothing actually gets said], and finance was the one industry where I am forced to back up my (informed) opinion with a giant bet. the cash is nice too, but that thrill of watching future events play out when you have money on the line is irreplaceable

i really like this.

May 21, 2011

went to med skl dropped out in final to start alll over in finance. No regets.

All things are possible with Him i have to deal

May 21, 2011

i would say S&T people are in it because they like it as much as IBD people are in it because they want money.

May 21, 2011
LLcoolJ:

i would say S&T people are in it because they like it as much as IBD people are in it because they want money.

I really really really doubt this.

Traders I can really see enjoying it but I know so many people going into Sales that are dumb as shit have no idea what finance even is and probably would have gone into vacuum cleaner sales instead if that paid better.

May 21, 2011

In college i was definitely passionate about finance. However, i have been in ER for 5 years and i don't feel as passionate anymore. I think the amount of writing (my weakness), BS assignments, and no skin in the game have turned me off. Anyone in IB, S&T, or a HF that have been turn off by their experience?

May 22, 2011

It's about a 60/40 split between money being a driving motivator and having a genuine interest in finance.

May 22, 2011

Genuine interest. I hate some of the mindless shit I have to do, but I do really like it overall. The pay definitely doesn't hurt either.

May 21, 2011

This thread, inspired me to start this thread: http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/blog/fermats-last-t...
Check it out. I'd love to hear some of your comments, opinions, and thoughts...

May 22, 2011

I plan on being in finance because it caters to my skill set and I like the intellectual challenge, sense of competition and skin in the game, and strategy involved with trading and/or asset management. Economics, history, and current events are also things I have passion towards and are useful for my investment strategy. I would not do ibanking though because the hours and lack of actual connection to the market make it not worth the money. S&T, AM or equity research (long run managing my own fund) is the way I want to be in the industry.

May 22, 2011

I remember going through college wanting to work with numbers.... after one accounting class i crossed that off and finance was kind of only other thing... i didnt like marketing or management... so i do like it and the paycheck is just a nice bonus

May 22, 2011

A higher up at sempra said to me " we aren't here to save the rainforest, or help endangered manatees, we are here to make a lot of money" I like finance because it is dynamic and always changing especially as a trader. I think being a banker would make me gouge my eyes out

May 23, 2011

I got into finance because I just loved the challenges that the markets present. To build something from the ground up always intrigued me.

May 23, 2011

there's an element of "grind" at the low levels, obviously, but investment is the best game in the world and I love it... I never want to be anything other than a value investor - whether I stay in PE or move to trading public securities doesn't matter much to me... but I feel like all the smartest people are facing off against each other in this game and it's a chance to prove you are the really the best.

I like competitions - and 'winning'... but I'm not a Sheen, sadly.

May 25, 2011
International Pymp:

... but I feel like all the smartest people are facing off against each other in this game and it's a chance to prove you are the really the best.

I like competitions - and 'winning'... but I'm not a Sheen, sadly.

This is what does it for me. Competition. And winning.

May 21, 2011
Awon Eleyi Awon Eleyi Won Bad Gan:
International Pymp:

... but I feel like all the smartest people are facing off against each other in this game and it's a chance to prove you are the really the best.

I like competitions - and 'winning'... but I'm not a Sheen, sadly.

This is what does it for me. Competition. And winning.

Huge component of it for me as well.

May 21, 2011
International Pymp:

there's an element of "grind" at the low levels, obviously, but investment is the best game in the world and I love it... I never want to be anything other than a value investor - whether I stay in PE or move to trading public securities doesn't matter much to me... but I feel like all the smartest people are facing off against each other in this game and it's a chance to prove you are the really the best.

I like competitions - and 'winning'... but I'm not a Sheen, sadly.

this this and this again. did I mention this?

I think buyside is pretty much the best gig you can possibly have, love it.

May 23, 2011

I will admit though... my first choice of career was to play in the NBA and I didn't quite make the cut (doh!)

May 21, 2011
International Pymp:

I will admit though... my first choice of career was to play in the NBA and I didn't quite make the cut (doh!)

Yeah, I wanted to be a musician. There is one bright side to not making it in that industry though: there will never be a day where I have to play but don't feel like it. Still, sitting in an office does pale in comparison to having adoring fans, millions of dollars a year, a legion of horny groupies, and being allowed to act totally irresponsible at any given moment.

May 21, 2011
International Pymp:

I will admit though... my first choice of career was to play in the NBA and I didn't quite make the cut (doh!)

Haha - same here.

May 23, 2011

I never entered college wanting to do finance. I actually got into finance because I lived with business majors, and one day my roommate got in a fit of rage over his 300 level economics homework, I paused my madden game and saw that it was just a calculus problem in disguise (forget the specifics, but the question wording made it clear that the answer was the area under the curve). I then realized that business majors were mostly a bunch of hacks who were there to get a high GPA and a job, not an education- they all took stats for dummies instead of calculus for their math requirement.

I had been interested in finance, but decided then that with my engineering background I could easily do this stuff. The money helped, and the fact that the tech sector had blown up helped too. I automated traders out of jobs for a bunch of years and now the computers essentially trade themselves.

I think the big money is mostly gone in this post 2007 world, at least on the sell side. If you have a honey who does alright, you can definitely be in the upper class, but as a single income household, you will likely be merely affluent, and still pulling pretty rough hours, especially once you factor in your train ride to/from Penn. The bigger bonuses will probably come back, but it will probably take 3-5 years.

May 23, 2011

Parents (both attorneys) and a grandfather (also an attorney) planned everything in my life up to the minute to be...an attorney.

Bucked the law school expectations, took the GMAT, owned three businesses before I was 30, the rest is history. All the while a check made out to WashU/StL being dangled in front of me to this very day. Of course accepting the bribe carries the death penalty of moving home to carry on the family law practice.

Found something I love. Wake up every day and can't wait to get to work. After all its not work if you enjoy it.

The money? Could really careless. I'd do it for free if it means not practicing law in a small town. Oh, and before anyone says my 'rents made it happen, or kept me up financially. I did my undergrad on scholly, and I was cut off 8 years ago b/c of the decision to not attend law school... visiting home is still uncomfortable.

May 21, 2011
ragnar danneskjold:

Parents (both attorneys) and a grandfather (also an attorney) planned everything in my life up to the minute to be...an attorney.

Bucked the law school expectations, took the GMAT, owned three businesses before I was 30, the rest is history. All the while a check made out to WashU/StL being dangled in front of me to this very day. Of course accepting the bribe carries the death penalty of moving home to carry on the family law practice.

Found something I love. Wake up every day and can't wait to get to work. After all its not work if you enjoy it.

The money? Could really careless. I'd do it for free if it means not practicing law in a small town. Oh, and before anyone says my 'rents made it happen, or kept me up financially. I did my undergrad on scholly, and I was cut off 8 years ago b/c of the decision to not attend law school... visiting home is still uncomfortable.

"And I know I may end up failing, too! But I know you were just like me with someone disappointed in you!!!!" Linkin Park

My father was a hard man with a bad temper, but I think he understood what true, unconditional love was, and I think he got it because his parents often dangled carrots in front of his face to try to run his life. Your parents don't sound like they ever understood unconditional love--it's love that is not conditioned upon what someone does or how they act. The solution? When you have children don't repeat the same mistakes.

May 23, 2011

Because being a doctor meant being on call 24/7 and rushing to the hospital when a patient needs you when in reality, I'd rather let them die. Going to law school means more schooling, LSAT, bar exam, then shitty stressful work and worrying about billable hours. So finance was the default option.

May 23, 2011

I really like what I'm doing in equity research on the buy-side, but it's not what makes me tick inside--that would have to be reserved for literature and art. If I had the means to do so, I'd be a full-time poet and work at creating beauty that will outlast me.

All said and done, I think I found my "sweet spot" where I get paid for doing something I enjoy in order to subsidize what I love: finance is for this life, art is for the next.

May 23, 2011

At first i was an IT major and thought I really wanted to go into something computer related. After doing research on how it's considered a back office job and hardly any room for career advancement, I started having doubts and didn't feel comfortable with my major. After winning a JP Morgan trading simulation competition, I had the opportunity to visit their trading floor and immediately a feeling of excitement overwhelmed me. I knew I definitely wanted a career that was challenging, exciting and fast paced. Working as a trader seems like the best fit for me, thus I switched to a finance major.

May 24, 2011

I wanted to be a doctor as a teenager. Various life experiences led me to realize that id rather help myself than help others. Im also a greedy bastard with no conscience or empathy towards other humans feelings, finance is a perfect fit

May 21, 2011
YourWorstEnemy:

I wanted to be a doctor as a teenager. Various life experiences led me to realize that id rather help myself than help others. Im also a greedy bastard with no conscience or empathy towards other humans feelings, finance is a perfect fit

Kudos for being honest.

May 25, 2011

I used to be all about working for one of the Big 4 Accounting firms, but when they offered me I realized how stupid it was.

1.) I didn't enjoy accounting. I was just good at it.
2.) Deloitte offered me 50k with no relocation and the max performance bonus at 2k in San Fran. The average work week was 70 hours.. (Bend over please)
3.) I liked finance for the game and the responsibility you were given early in your career. If I wasn't given challenging work or enough responsibility I'm pretty sure I would turn into Jim Halpert.

May 25, 2011

I liked trading growing up. Also, my parents never listened to FM radio, seemed to be always AM. And a decade or so ago, when they discovered Bloomberg (AM 1130), forget it.

I also did want to be a doctor, but I'm really not studious enough.

"All I've ever wanted was an honest week's pay for an honest day's work."

May 26, 2011

When I was in 8th grade I took a summer course in investing.(Parents have no finance background.) I was hooked. It wasn't about the money. I genuinely enjoyed reading annual reports and watching the graphs change with fluctuations in the market. Heck I thought a Bloomberg terminal was one of the coolest things on earth. MTV, BET, CNBC, MSNBC, and Bloomberg were the ONLY channels I watched for 3 years. Then I got older and the thoughts of getting rich started to pollute my previously pure passion for finance. So now although I read the journal daily and freak out if I miss the opening bell, I ask myself, "Are you in it only for the money?" The answer has been no thus far.
When it becomes only about the money, I will find something else. I enjoy my soul too much :)

May 21, 2011
lonelybankerchick:

When I was in 8th grade I took a summer course in investing.(Parents have no finance background.) I was hooked. It wasn't about the money. I genuinely enjoyed reading annual reports and watching the graphs change with fluctuations in the market. Heck I thought a Bloomberg terminal was one of the coolest things on earth. MTV, BET, CNBC, MSNBC, and Bloomberg were the ONLY channels I watched for 3 years. Then I got older and the thoughts of getting rich started to pollute my previously pure passion for finance. So now although I read the journal daily and freak out if I miss the opening bell, I ask myself, "Are you in it only for the money?" The answer has been no thus far.
When it becomes only about the money, I will find something else. I enjoy my soul too much :)

SB for you...

May 26, 2011

When I was in 8th grade I took a summer course in investing.(Parents have no finance background.) I was hooked. It wasn't about the money. I genuinely enjoyed reading annual reports and watching the graphs change with fluctuations in the market. Heck I thought a Bloomberg terminal was one of the coolest things on earth. MTV, BET, CNBC, MSNBC, and Bloomberg were the ONLY channels I watched for 3 years. Then I got older and the thoughts of getting rich started to pollute my previously pure passion for finance. So now although I read the journal daily and freak out if I miss the opening bell, I ask myself, "Are you in it only for the money?" The answer has been no thus far.
When it becomes only about the money, I will find something else. I enjoy my soul too much :)

May 21, 2011
lonelybankerchick:

When I was in 8th grade I took a summer course in investing.(Parents have no finance background.) I was hooked. It wasn't about the money. I genuinely enjoyed reading annual reports and watching the graphs change with fluctuations in the market. Heck I thought a Bloomberg terminal was one of the coolest things on earth. MTV, BET, CNBC, MSNBC, and Bloomberg were the ONLY channels I watched for 3 years. Then I got older and the thoughts of getting rich started to pollute my previously pure passion for finance. So now although I read the journal daily and freak out if I miss the opening bell, I ask myself, "Are you in it only for the money?" The answer has been no thus far.
When it becomes only about the money, I will find something else. I enjoy my soul too much :)

Are you single?

May 21, 2011
UFOinsider:
lonelybankerchick:

When I was in 8th grade I took a summer course in investing.(Parents have no finance background.) I was hooked. It wasn't about the money. I genuinely enjoyed reading annual reports and watching the graphs change with fluctuations in the market. Heck I thought a Bloomberg terminal was one of the coolest things on earth. MTV, BET, CNBC, MSNBC, and Bloomberg were the ONLY channels I watched for 3 years. Then I got older and the thoughts of getting rich started to pollute my previously pure passion for finance. So now although I read the journal daily and freak out if I miss the opening bell, I ask myself, "Are you in it only for the money?" The answer has been no thus far.
When it becomes only about the money, I will find something else. I enjoy my soul too much :)

Are you single?

She's lonely, does it matter? Someone give the girl some love...

May 21, 2011

The thing about this industry is its been said we are all pretty much going to hell for being in high finance. The people also say you cant take you money with you to heaven. Well I say fuck them I am most certianly taking it to hell with me if thats where I will be.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays

Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne

May 21, 2011

Meh, banker chicks aren't great fuck buddies anyways, or so I hear... :)

And, wow, hostility much ea?

May 21, 2011
D M:

Meh, banker chicks aren't great fuck buddies anyways, or so I hear... :)

And, wow, hostility much ea?

Right? I'm just flirting with some girl, making conversation, and this dude comes in with a chip on his shoulder. With any luck, she's the hot chick down the hall from me.....

@ EA: my man, I get plenty of play, seriously

U JELLY?

Jun 4, 2013

Major bump.

Parts of finance are really cool and interesting. What they don't tell you is that anything you will be doing in most finance jobs is fucking boring as hell even if it is somehow related to the interesting and cool parts.

May 21, 2011
Comment
Jun 4, 2013
Jun 4, 2013
Comment
Jun 5, 2013
Comment