How to break into ER (buyside)?

Profile: UK, target, finished first year, 1 spring (finance, not ib/am), bunch of AM insight days etc, solid EC's (volunteering, own portfolio etc) 

I would like a summer at an AM doing ER so how can i maximise my chances of getting a summer in ER in the buyside?

thanks, appreciate the help :)

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Comments (4)

  • Analyst 2 in Research - Other
Jun 17, 2021 - 7:44am

If you're trying to go straight to the buyside right after UG without doing sellside ER/IBD first just be really careful about what your definition of "buyside" is. Typically when sellside ER/IBD guys talk about going to the "buyside" they specifically mean a role at a good long only or hedge fund to exclusively do research that contributes to the P&L, and hence get some of that P&L themselves via bonuses. Many of the "buyside" places that take people straight out of UG are actually generic AM roles at say a bulge bracket bank's AM arm, or a run of the mill "asset management" role with ambiguous responsibilities that may or may not actually include P&L-impacting research. Pay at these places is far below what sellside ER/IBD/good LO/HF guys will be pulling in (base might be similar but you'll have a negligible bonus) and you'll develop far less technical and stock picking skills. 

Unless you're going straight to one of the well-known LOs like Fidelity/Capital or a HF I think it might not be what you're expecting, and maybe worth looking at sellside first. Of course if you've got an offer to head straight to Wellington or the like after UG because you're a superstar then ignore everything I've said. 

Jun 17, 2021 - 8:13am

I would say this is fairly clear to most people. A whole bunch of the big LOs advertise internships and grad schemes for equity, fixed income research, etc. If you go somewhere in equity research, that is what you will be doing. But yes some of the roles are a bit more generic and I would avoid them.

Has been quite a while since I was an intern/ grad, but a whole load of LOs have internship/ grad schemes in London. Just apply to all of them and see where you get... the usual suspects Schroders, T Rowe, Fidelity, JPAM (from memory), Blackrock, M&G etc. Pay in the first few years is likely less than sell side, but this doesn't matter - you will get a better quality experience in stock picking, and may also progress quicker (often can progress internally to an analyst role, vs. on sell-side it can be hard to switch to buy-side, may have to take a bit of a position cut when doing it). 5+ years out you can get paid a lot more than sell-sider if you are good.

If you want to do AM, you are better off doing one of these schemes as a grad rather than starting on the sell side in my opinion. I don't think you need to be a superstar either - just be smart, hard working, clearly passionate about investing, and have some luck in the process of course. 

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