help... what should i do?

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Have been with a HF the last 5 years, first as an analyst then as a FM the last year.
Did very well as an analyst, endorsed track record of calls beats just about all my peers.
It's a private HF set up by a formerly big name banker / FM in the local context.

My boss is retiring at the end of 2015, so have been looking to transition.
Unfortunately no HFs seem to be hiring in my country at the moment, track record or not.
Also I need a "big" name bank on my CV (Joined during the crisis, banks weren't hiring)

Was referred for an IB derivatives structuring role recently at a small Swiss private / investment bank.

I can't complain about the base salary (upper end VP level) but:

(i) I'm a trader at heart. Am scared that if I take this... it's a 1-way street down the derivatives route. I'll never be able to make it back to the fund management world.

(ii) I know nuts about derivatives... guy that referred me is head of derivatives at a large bank and knows I'm a very good trader and had originally referred me for a derivatives trader position. But this is a structuring role....,,

(iii) Given the current climate, have been hearing many people expecting things to get worse. AM / HFs hiring has trickled down to near nothing in my country.

In light of these factors... what should i do??

Is this even considered a good career path?

Very confused..

Comments (4)

 
Dec 18, 2014 - 6:14am

No harm mentioning the country here, it will only give users better info. to work on.

I'm junior but might as well say this. If you worked so well for your fund, have you tried speaking with the top guy in your fund? If he is retiring it's a very good reason for him to refer you to his contacts. I know for a fact, even after doing extremely well my boss was just a person who will never link any of his employees to other guys in the industry - it was just his nature. But I'd imagine in a situation like yours, it should be possible to get a strong reference.

Have you tried head hunters? What about moving to a different location?

You still have a year so not that bad in terms of timing. It is crucial to understand that 'as long as you are in your current seat' people will 'kind of have to' respect you - because you're the client. Once you're out and jobless it becomes really hard in most cases. Maximise your network 'now' that you have the chance and it could be a great way to find a role especially keeping in mind hiring hasn't been great and is expected to get worse.

 
Dec 18, 2014 - 6:47am

Gcredit:

No harm mentioning the country here, it will only give users better info. to work on.

I'm junior but might as well say this. If you worked so well for your fund, have you tried speaking with the top guy in your fund? If he is retiring it's a very good reason for him to refer you to his contacts. I know for a fact, even after doing extremely well my boss was just a person who will never link any of his employees to other guys in the industry - it was just his nature. But I'd imagine in a situation like yours, it should be possible to get a strong reference.

Have you tried head hunters? What about moving to a different location?

You still have a year so not that bad in terms of timing. It is crucial to understand that 'as long as you are in your current seat' people will 'kind of have to' respect you - because you're the client. Once you're out and jobless it becomes really hard in most cases. Maximise your network 'now' that you have the chance and it could be a great way to find a role especially keeping in mind hiring hasn't been great and is expected to get worse.

Singapore. I do macro / TA, global equities long / short where 95% of the funds i know of here are doing bottom-up stock picking or different things.

We have similar bosses... mine is willing to endorse me as a character referee but God forbid he pro-actively refers me on to someone else. It's just his character.

Headhunters.. the ones i've been approached by are trying to get me into things like PB investment advisory and discretionary portfolio management, very different and somewhat unattractive. The AM / HF headhunters i've approached said there's nothing on the horizon.

Also i need a "big name" on my CV.

How's the hiring climate where you're at?
Have heard from multiple sources hiring in the fund sector has been very bad, and it looks that way from my job apps too.

 
Dec 18, 2014 - 9:04am

No matter what role you do and how well some morons will always find an excuse to turn you down when things aren't that great, just how it works. In your case 'big bank' on your CV seems to be an issue, also your style of trading.

But it's right, my boss said same thing that juniors should start with a larger organisation because everyone recognises the brand. So may be try securing a role with one of the banks in Singapore? They're not in the middle Volker so I am guess decent prop desks around. Might sound weird but not trying to discourage you, it's just that sometimes Asia offers amazing sell-side ops on prop side.

If I was in your place, I'd pick up the phone and just call people around for an informal chat. Even if they don't seem to be the kind of place you wanna work at, meeting helps. They can then link you to someone they know and so on. I'm saying this because a guy I know in a similar situation went mental with networking and managed to find a role in London with a 3bn fund. Not great on money there but moved somewhere else in 4 years and is happy now.

PS: In UK things look okay, haven't heard of any strong negative signals. I'm aware of only a couple of people in my network who moved to larger funds so I'm sorry can't give good colour on hiring here.

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