Weird Offer Dilemma: Risk Mgmt vs. Prop Trading

Hi everyone!

I need to decide between two internship offers: one for trading at a fairly well-known prop shop in Chicago - think CTC/DRW/Optiver - and one in the Master's/PhD risk management division at American Express in NY. Amex group could be anything from consumer card risk to corporate underwriting. My goal is to end up in S&T at a BB doing trading or research (would even settle for market risk). If you can help:

-Is American Express a good name on the resume in general?
-Which spot opens more doors for full-time recruiting?
-Networking: Does the ability to grab drinks with my BB contacts justify taking MO over FO?

I am really on the fence and would be extremely grateful for any help you can give!

tl;dr - Risk Management at American Express or Prop. Trading in Chicago? Which will make me a happier monkey during full-time recruiting?

Comments (12)

Mar 6, 2012

Amex has nothing to do with S&T. Shouldn't even be a discussion about this.

Take the prop. Some, if not most, would take the prop over BB S&T

Mar 6, 2012

Prop shop if the firm is reputable. You want S&T so it's an obvious choice.

Mar 6, 2012

Prop shop 100%. If you like the culture, getting paid more, working with more talented people, and getting actual trading experience then its not even a question. Can't speak for all the shops but DRW almost made me quit banking. Great people, fun environment, and you actually learn how to be a trader.

Mar 6, 2012

Prop trading in Chicago is the end goal for many people in BB S&T. Take that. AMEX has nothing to do with your end goal, other than location.

Mar 6, 2012

Prop trading. The Bulls are great this season.

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Mar 6, 2012

i saw this earlier and didn't post b/c it was so obvious i thought i was missing something but yeah... are you kidding me? of course prop.

I don't accept sacrifices and I don't make them. ... If ever the pleasure of one has to be bought by the pain of the other, there better be no trade at all. A trade by which one gains and the other loses is a fraud.

Mar 6, 2012

Are you an idiot?

    • 1
Mar 6, 2012

and this is in no way a "weird offer dilemma". Should be re-titled to "simple offer decision"

Mar 6, 2012

So I guess Amex doesn't have much brand value outside of its industry. I'm going to go with Chi-city for the summer. Thanks for the help!

Mar 6, 2012

Brand value is only worth considering when you are comparing apples to apples. Yes, more people (like your parents) will know about AMEX and what they do, but if the role isn't relevant to what you want to do, it doesn't really matter.

Being the janitor at Goldman won't help you by just having Goldman on your resume; it's more about what you are actually doing while you are there and how it relates to your long term goals.

Mar 6, 2012
TechBanking:

Brand value is only worth considering when you are comparing apples to apples. Yes, more people (like your parents) will know about AMEX and what they do, but if the role isn't relevant to what you want to do, it doesn't really matter.

Being the janitor at Goldman won't help you by just having Goldman on your resume; it's more about what you are actually doing while you are there and how it relates to your long term goals.

So simple and filled with common sense...but I guarantee that we will see 10 more threads like this within a week.

Mar 6, 2012
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