PWM Predicament

Subscribe

Avid reader – first time poster.

As many before me have mentioned, I cannot thank the WSO community enough for the insight and information you all have provided. But as it stands, it is time to pose my own question to the community in hopes that you can help me one more time.

Age 24, state school, very avg/low gpa, marketing/management major, no internships, don’t come from money or well connected family…. that being said, somehow lucked and willed my way into a getting hired as a broker at a BB PWM firm and better yet, in my 1 year here thus far, one of the more successful teams have taken a liking to me and brought me on board.

Where is the problem you may ask? I understand. I count my lucky stars for the opportunity I have gotten. I know if I stay with this and this team and don’t muck it up too bad I can have a very very nice life. But there is something inside of me that is drawn more toward the analytical side of the business. I am that cliché kid that reads every “buy side” related post on these message boards and would love nothing more than to one day work at a large HF shop. That being said, I realize the unrealistic nature and uphill battle that would be given my current resume metrics.

Given that any decent level MBA is probably out of my reach (unless I score exceptionally well on GMAT), is my best bet to study for the CFA (I assume work would sponsor me), and perhaps start running my own custom portfolios for my clients and ideally my team’s book? (manage ~$700million). Would establishing any sort of portfolio track record + CFA make up for not going the target -> IB -> HBS route?

--apologize for the length--

Region

Comments (5)

 
Oct 2, 2014 - 3:28pm

CFA would be a big +. It seems you recognize this would be your best route to open doors, so I wouldn't be so concerned with your job sponsoring you or not.

Running your own custom portfolios - yes, if you mean you are actually analyzing securities and making buy/sell recommendations. That'd be a huge plus towards getting a HF interview/job. If you mean being more involved in broader asset allocation, probably not helpful.

HF care a lot less about MBAs. I wouldn't think you are severely disadvantaged if you are PWM guy with CFA and experience analyzing securities versus an IB/HBS. Obviously IB/HBS guy is smart and has good base of skills, so that's always tough competition.

 
Oct 2, 2014 - 3:53pm

hey man, we've traded PMs but I'll keep all of that under wraps, all I'll add here is that it takes at least 5 years for you to really start making any kind of money at being a broker, so don't lose faith just yet. I design custom portfolios in my team and it's great. it scratches that itch and while I will freely admit I don't get as granular as I would if I was in a fund, I like it that way. all of that said, if your heart's not in PWM, it's not fair to your clients and you should get out. if you're not sure, I'd stick it out for a few more years, work on CFA, and realize that going somewhere else at 27-28 is not the end of the world.

 
Oct 3, 2014 - 2:05am

Ben-Young:

somehow lucked and willed my way into a getting hired as a broker at a BB PWM firm and better yet, in my 1 year here thus far, one of the more successful teams have taken a liking to me and brought me on board...

...I am that cliché kid that reads every “buy side” related post on these message boards and would love nothing more than to one day work at a large HF shop. That being said, I realize the unrealistic nature and uphill battle that would be given my current resume metrics.

Being brought into a group with high production is a great accomplishment. Those posts put the "buy side" on a pedestal, which may be detrimental to your own satisfaction. A correct analogy would be Facebook, where there is only positive feedback and only the best moments of people's lives are shared.

 
Oct 7, 2014 - 3:19am

I think you really should think about it long term. In pwm a huge part of the job is related to relationship managers who handle clients but they still have their own analytic team for investment, the only thing that is different is that they may consider long term investments and preservation rather than growth of wealth. I think what you seek is more about that itch for excitement of everyday buy and sell, ups and downs, more enthusiasm. You may call it an opportunity to be with your current team, but when you see the big picture it may not be in line with your long term goals.

Start Discussion

Total Avg Compensation

September 2020 Hedge Fund

  • Vice President (18) $520
  • Director/MD (10) $359
  • Portfolio Manager (7) $297
  • 3rd+ Year Associate (18) $269
  • 2nd Year Associate (25) $242
  • Engineer/Quant (46) $237
  • 1st Year Associate (58) $189
  • Analysts (175) $167
  • Intern/Summer Associate (12) $134
  • Junior Trader (5) $102
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (183) $80

Leaderboard See all

1
Jamoldo's picture
Jamoldo
98.3
2
LonLonMilk's picture
LonLonMilk
98.3
3
Secyh62's picture
Secyh62
98.2
4
CompBanker's picture
CompBanker
97.8
5
Edifice's picture
Edifice
97.6
6
redever's picture
redever
97.6
7
Addinator's picture
Addinator
97.6
8
frgna's picture
frgna
97.5
9
NuckFuts's picture
NuckFuts
97.5
10
bolo up's picture
bolo up
97.4