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Advice needed for my career

Hi Guys,
I am 37 year old guy and have been working as Quantitative Analyst in a mid level position in risk side of financial markets. I have worked in past with a few big investment banks. In all , I have 10 years of work experience(all on quantiatative side- however varies from macroeconomic econometric modelling to consumer finace to deriavtives pricing and PFE methods.

I have a Post Graduate (Graduate) degree in economics( with a heavy dose of econometrics) however, I feel a bit left out related to promotion and future responsibilities as these positions typically go to the guys coming from IVY league(Non Phd as well) or a Phd (European).

Do you think I should take up MFE from one of the IVY league or apply for a Phd program which does not hinder me from my job. Choice is in terms of Ivy league MFE vs Phd (Executive program such ED HEC executive PhD, wherein you can keep working).

I have a good base and real exposure of econometric modelling(SAS,) and stochastic calculus based development and business experience.

Please advice me regarding my study plan. I definitely want to studuy as I find this as a gap in my CV. In case you suggest me to apply to MFE, please suggest me universities.

I will be very thankful for your advice.
 
Where are you located now? Are you willing to relocate and find another job for a specific program? Afterward where do you want to be in general, US or Europe?

What are your career goals? Do you want to continue what you are doing? Sounds like you aren't getting promoted as you would like; what qualifications/experience do the guys being promoted have?

Since you are already working as a quant analyst, I question to what degree a MFE would help you at this point. I don't think it would be worth it for you.
 
@namish,
I'm a little bit younger than you and I already feel I'm too old to ask questions on this board.
Admitting banking industry is more snobbish than the rest, I would still think it twice, if it was me, before i came to the conclusion that I am not getting promoted only because of lack of the piece of IVY league degree paper. From what I've seen and what I've learned, politics, leadership, interpersonal skills... can weigh a lot more in climbing up corporate rankings than anything else (technical capabilities, academic background...), and they seem to be the major road blocks especially for technical people.

I would think getting an E Ph.D. from a IVY League school will help, but only to the extent that you level up with those others (who get promotions) in other aspects such as leadership, initiatives, politics, etc. etc.

Just 2 cents of mine. Hope it helps. Btw, another similar forum that you might find helpful: wallstreetoasis.com
 
Thanks for your reply Connor! Currently, I am based out of Singapore and would like to work in the US/London for next couple of years particularly on the buy side, away from a mid office quant role. Further down the line, I would like to start my own quant fund- I have good exposure to tools and techniques but feel that a stamp from Ivt league will go long way not just finding the job in the US/London in a suitable role but attracting atlent for tomorrow.
I have a deep econometrics background and have built a lot of VBA based prototypes for simulating IR, FX, Commodties. I have worked extensively on the quantiative side of credit risk. However I would like to move away from credit risk and would like to change location as well. I think given my econometrics background (I have done masters in quantitative economics from the top notch university in India) and exposure to stochastic cxalculus. I feel that I can combine both (econometrics and stochastic calculus or continuous finance part) and contribute a great deal in strategy making- but don't know how to make switch.
My colleagues are mostly Okish from academic perspective but those are more respected who have either a PhD degree from Europe or a Masters degree from Ivy League in US- their promotional chances remain better owing to such perception and may be with some reality- after all they are not bad.
 
Ah, you are working in Singapore. That explains a lot of things, one of them, in my observation is deep regional obsession with the Ivy stamp.
No wonder parents pay a lot of money to send their kids oversea to get into Ivy leagues.

And I don't rule out interpersonal skill plays an important role as well. Too bad you have to resort to this to climb the ladder.

Time to talk to recruiters who can get you a job in the US.
 
I agree with Andy about talking to recruiters about finding a job.

But I think you can look at this in 2 ways: (1) do I want to work and go to school part-time or (2) do I want to go to school full-time?

This is important because in option (1) you really need to find a job first but it needs to be in a city where you can also do your schooling. In option (2) you can just look at universities.

I think you should also consider doing an MBA (or dual MBA/MFE) because it is one entrance path into fund management and you already have many of the quantitative skills.

A PhD will take you 3-5 years anywhere, with PhDs in Europe being generally shorter. But this isn't always the case, for example the PhD finance at INSEAD is 4-5 years.

Instead of looking at your situation as US MFE vs European PhD, I think you should look at it as I need one of the two to further my career and since I don't have a preference for either, I can apply to both which increases my options and allows me to take the best offer anywhere. You could also consider an MBA or MFE from Oxford or Cambridge as I would imagine these would be on par with an Ivy degree.
 
Finance PhD in USA takes minimum 5 years. If you go to a top 20 business school, it will take 6-7 years before they give you the degree. By the time you get the degree you will be mentally drained, financially bankrupt, and you will feel like you have aged 20 years.
Just do the one year MFE at UC-Berkeley. That will give you a career boost which is equivalent to a second tier Finance PhD or a Top 5 MBA degree. It is a quick, painless way to move up in your career. The PhD experience is designed for people in their early 20s. You cannot go through that experience in your late 30s and early 40s.
 
Finance PhD in USA takes minimum 5 years. If you go to a top 20 business school, it will take 6-7 years before they give you the degree. By the time you get the degree you will be mentally drained, financially bankrupt, and you will feel like you have aged 20 years.
Just do the one year MFE at UC-Berkeley. That will give you a career boost which is equivalent to a second tier Finance PhD or a Top 5 MBA degree. It is a quick, painless way to move up in your career. The PhD experience is designed for people in their early 20s. You cannot go through that experience in your late 30s and early 40s.
Dear TraderJoe/Connor/Andy
I have followed your advice and just took my GRE on Dec 13th. My score is following: 800 in Quant and 650 in verbal.

Please advise me in terms - would be OK/realistic for me to apply to Berkley/NYU/Oxford for year 2011-2012 or I am already late?

Please suggest me a couple of more places.
 
Dear TraderJoe/Connor/Andy
I have followed your advice and just took my GRE on Dec 13th. My score is following: 800 in Quant and 650 in verbal.

Please advise me in terms - would be OK/realistic for me to apply to Berkley/NYU/Oxford for year 2011-2012 or I am already late?

Please suggest me a couple of more places.

Missed deadline for Berkeley. I believe most of the top US PhD program deadlines are in December with a few in January, so you would be hard pressed to get everything together in time (LORs, statement of purpose, etc).

I believe US program deadlines are usually much earlier then European application deadlines in general. I think the biggest deciding factor on whether you can made the deadlines are can you get your LORs in time, as there isn't much time for your recommenders to write the letters.
 
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