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Commodity Risk Quant to Commodity FO Quant

I really should've been posting for years... Hopefully that would've prevented at least a couple of bad career decisions I've made along the way... but I am where I am.

Would really like to get outside perspective and some feedback on my action plan of moving away from risk quant to a more lucrative FO-aligned/non-risk quant role:
a) what can I improve?
b) is it feasible?

Background
9 years of work experience in market / counterparty risk. Recent 4-5 were in Risk Quant roles. Now I'm a Risk Quant in Commodity space. MSc in Stats.

Current role
Nearly 100% coding Python risk models (market and counterparty). Sometimes there is a paper to write. I work in a small place so there are other ad-hoc outside of risk tasks.

Prep Plan
Coding:

master Python, fill any knowledge gaps
learn C++ so at least I can write toy models, work with QuantLib

Maths/pricing:
further master stochastic calculus
pricing of exotics / Black-Scholes extensions
go through typical maths/pricing interview questions

Jobs targeted
Goal: Commodity/FX Quant (I'd take any asset class but CM/FX I feel I have the best chance)
Backup 1: XVA FO Quant (will use my counterparty risk experience - secured an interview in the past)
Backup 2: Commodity/FX FO Model Validation (should be easier to get than CM/FX Quant)
Backup 3: Python Quant Dev (I'm not amazing at IT stuff so it would maybe that's just dev heavy quant role...)

Fail: just take some "cushy", better paid Quant Risk Job or try to get promoted
 
At 9 years of experience you'd typically be looking at ED or senior VP roles, managing a small team of a couple of people or so. If I were hiring for such a position for FO quant, your profile doesn't really stand out and it's not immediately clear what you'd have to contribute. Things are different were it an internal hire - you already know the systems and so can hit the ground running, and we might have interacted in the past and know you as a sharp guy.

The typical interview questions at your level of seniority won't be "differentiate x^x" or "how many hops does this bunny hop", but rather "how would you model product X/why does that not work/how can you mitigate it and why is there no better method in the literature" or similar, i.e. questions that are difficult to answer if you don't have the right/relevant experience. Now interviews always have a big luck component, so I don't mean to discourage you from applying; maybe somewhere they will ask basic Black-Scholes derivations and you'll pass.

Your best chance I think is, like always, networking, first internally but if that doesn't work out, externally. Failing that, you can blindly apply to positions (probably discuss your situation with a headhunter to see if they can spin it in a positive way). This all is to say that it is definitely possible to move, but you should be prepared for some disappointments and rejections, too.

Finally, on the sellside, especially at large banks, I don't think there is much of a difference in comp between FO quants and risk quants. The former have better mobility (to the buyside in particular) and has traditionally been the more coveted position (and people tend to think the work more interesting), but you may be disappointed if money is all you're after (you're likely to get a bump in pay anytime you move anyway).
 
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