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Best Paying Quant Jobs With <= 10 Hour Work Days?

Hi, I've been a forum lurker here for a while now, and although I've searched and seen threads mentioning quant pay and work hours, generally the information isn't broken down very finely, and I'm still left wondering about the details of some combinations e.g. signal processing algorithmic trading at hedge funds.

Is there some quant job/company combination for which the pay to work hours ratio is particularly good without requiring more than 10 hours /day? Ideally 9 hours/day or less with the exception that occasional extremely long work days (16+ hours) are OK? From what I've read, it seems like an algorithmic trading job using signal processing at a well-off hedge fund would be the best match, and I do realize that such a job is probably extremely hard to land, but I'm just asking to know what are among the best job possibilities.

Thoughts please...
 

koupparis

Carpe noctum
There is no cookie cutter answer to your question. YMMV depending on where you end up (company/location/continent), what role you play in the team, how evolved / developed the team is etc, etc. Obviously the less critical your role, the less time you'll spend on the job.
 
There are a number of funds that advertise that they like to have a work life balance and relaxed atmosphere:
deshaw, two sigma, QVT, hudson river trading, cutler to name a few. Some of them actually have a nice balance from what alums mentioned.
 
Care to share what you do and where? Thats a very nice set of hours, can you shine some light on to why there is no need to stay longer?
 

Joy Pathak

Swaptionz
Whatever I am willing to share is on my LinkedIN. I should mention that before moving to this job, I did work on average 12 hours a day (during my internship) in the previous department (same company).
 
Thanks for all the feedback. Sounds like it's possible, but mostly up to trial and error as there's no general job, location, company type combination rule.

Fina: Thanks for specific list. I'll look into those companies.

Andy: I am in the US, so I suppose I could work for the fed, but I imagine like most government jobs it doesn't pay nearly as well. Interesting idea though.
 
it seems like an algorithmic trading job using signal processing at a well-off hedge fund would be the best match

so I suppose I could work for the fed, but I imagine like most government jobs it doesn't pay nearly as well. Interesting idea though.

How did you come to these conclusions?

Sometime ago I realized that the adage is true. Doing something you enjoy and having most nights and weekends free for a comfortable (if not greater) paycheck can be worth more than a flashy title.
It depends what you value most.

Expand your horizons beyond the buy-side front office. You might be surprised by what you find.
 
Expand your horizons beyond the buy-side front office. You might be surprised by what you find.
Care to elaborate on what you found?
Just like this article mentions: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-...financial-woes-as-bankers-fret.html?cmpid=bit that 27 year old is complaining about only making 500k.. Where else can I have such a terrible problem to deal with? Many things would be great and enjoyable but waiting 10 years till you hit low 6 figures at a regular job is not enjoyable.
 
Care to elaborate on what you found?
Just like this article mentions: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-...financial-woes-as-bankers-fret.html?cmpid=bit that 27 year old is complaining about only making 500k.. Where else can I have such a terrible problem to deal with? Many things would be great and enjoyable but waiting 10 years till you hit low 6 figures at a regular job is not enjoyable.

If salary is all you are after -

Escaping finance entirely, I know many junior engineers (<5 years experience) working in the Athabasca oilsands in Fort McMurray Alberta pulling in well over 100k with room and board (your own trailor!), transportation. Your trips home are paid for - generally you get 2 weeks vacation every 6 weeks but you get no weekends or holidays while working. Hourly skilled laborer and technicians without college degrees take-home and OT pay dwarf those of salaried employees. The taxes (and rent if you choose to live off campus) are about on par with what you would be paying in NYC and you get both government and company paid health insurance.

Of course most of the work is outdoors and in the winter it has been known to hit a balmy -40 F on occasion. Some of the work camps are quite remote and there is only really one highway in and out of town.

Not my cup of tea but friends and family that have found it quite enjoyable. Truth be told I mulled over an offer to work on the Kerl Oil Sands project when I lost my front-office job in October 2008 (the town had not yet been built but I dare you to google map it. Hint: Bozeman Montana is 18 hours due south)

Things have slowed down a little since 2007 but I hear they are picking up again.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/alberta-jobs-increase-figures-are-stunning-2011-10-11
http://ithinkmining.com/2008/06/20/...ons-2k-in-fort-mcmurray-and-oil-sands-mining/
http://oilsandstruth.org/working-full-time-work-camps-fort-mcmurray
 
How did you come to these conclusions?

Well, they were hardly rigorous conclusions. I kept reading that algorithmic traders and signal processing quants were some of the best paid on in things like this forum and the career guides on this site. I also read that IBs require long work days and figured hedge funds might be more discretionary and flexible that way. Also, it seems if you're an algo trader then you don't need to be studying market news as much as everyone else as your trading decisions are based more on the stock data itself and less market news and thus as long as you get to your job decently before the market opens and leave a little after it closes you ought to be good? But I have no experience w/ this so I could be very wrong and thus why I asked.

In regards to working for government and getting paid less, I thought this was a commonly agreed upon point. I've also witnessed this first hand for engineering jobs. It's certainly not a good time to be working for the state or local governments given all the budget cutting, and I suspect it's not for the fed as well, but I don't have first hand experience.

Expand your horizons beyond the buy-side front office. You might be surprised by what you find.

Yes, I've read middle and back office is a lot less time consuming, but also less profitable and exciting. I'm also considering a career far from the front office in engineering, but again, that seems less profitable and exciting.
 

Yike Lu

Finder of biased coins.
Well, they were hardly rigorous conclusions. I kept reading that algorithmic traders and signal processing quants were some of the best paid on in things like this forum and the career guides on this site. I also read that IBs require long work days and figured hedge funds might be more discretionary and flexible that way. Also, it seems if you're an algo trader then you don't need to be studying market news as much as everyone else as your trading decisions are based more on the stock data itself and less market news and thus as long as you get to your job decently before the market opens and leave a little after it closes you ought to be good? But I have no experience w/ this so I could be very wrong and thus why I asked.
When you work for a hedge fund, you eat what you kill. For all the crap they take, banks do have large lines of business which are non zero-sum (loans, IPO, M&A, underwriting).

So while hedge funds are certainly more discretionary and flexible, I'll let you make the connection between pay and hours.
 
Well, they were hardly rigorous conclusions. I kept reading that algorithmic traders and signal processing quants were some of the best paid on in things like this forum and the career guides on this site. I also read that IBs require long work days and figured hedge funds might be more discretionary and flexible that way. Also, it seems if you're an algo trader then you don't need to be studying market news as much as everyone else as your trading decisions are based more on the stock data itself and less market news and thus as long as you get to your job decently before the market opens and leave a little after it closes you ought to be good? But I have no experience w/ this so I could be very wrong and thus why I asked..

Yeah its very wrong. Algo trading has its own shortcomings. You make what you earn from trading. If your trading signals don't generate money, you don't make much, probably nothing, since most hedge funds are moving towards a reward based model instead of paying big salaries upfront. Compare this to most other quant positions which are good paying and more stable. I reckon there is a LOT more stress in trading than other positions. Hedge funds do not care how long you work if they are paying you based on your signals profitability. If you are part of a trading/strategy group, then I doubt if the hours are short/flexible.
 
Have to factore in the hours worked.
I don't care how many hours he worked, I'm not going to feel sympathetic for him. I'm not saying he isn't worth $500k. I just don't think he has any right to complain about his compensation per hour.
 

Abdel

Economist
I don't care how many hours he worked, I'm not going to feel sympathetic for him. I'm not saying he isn't worth $500k. I just don't think he has any right to complain about his compensation per hour.

Well, it depends.

If it's $500k/year gross salary then you have to take into account:

Federal income tax: 33%
NY state income tax: 8%
Social security: 3% ?
Payroll tax;
Consumption tax;
etc..

So he's paying over 40% of his salary to the governement. Then he has to pay his rent....so if you factore in all the hours he worked with the money he has left over after paying taxes, rent & food, I wouldn't be happy too.

But if $500k/year is his NET salary, then you're correct, he shouldn't be complaining, specially with the current market condition.
 
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