Why do employers still interview people with PhDs not in math/econometrics?

So I’ve studied a year of my MFE and wonder how people without doing the necessary math get interviews. My undergrad was in physics and I still keep in contact with many classmates who are doing their PhDs. They’d never touch or see any stochastic calculus, and haven’t even heard of the word martingale.

I couldn’t even imagine a work colleague briefly explaining change of measures to a physics PhD grad. I can’t see how I would be able to grasp the basics of the math without actually doing a few courses on it.

Why do they get interviews? Or do programs overemphasise the math and the measure theory that is actually required?
 
Are you sure that their thesis didn't involve any PDE or other math related topic? I had a similar doubt when one of my interviewer's had a PhD in Chemical engineering. I found out his thesis somewhere on the internet which had extensive application of PDEs.

Additionally, are you referring to banks or hedge funds that are interviewing these non-math/econometrics PhD candidates?
 
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PhDs have to teach themselves several topics over the course of composing their dissertation. To think that a capable PhD in Physics/engineering/CS could not self teach themselves stochastic calculus/probability in 2-3 weeks is ridiculous, especially stochastic calculus at the level MFEs learn the subject at. I would venture to say that a large majority of MFE students could not explain change of measure to someone if they were asked to do so, so I do not understand the point that MFEs are somehow more capable with the mathematics than a PhD in a technical but non-math centric field.

A PhD from a top institution checks the box that the individual is highly competent at independently learning new material. So long as it is in a sufficiently technical subject, I think it does not matter much whether someone has formally taken coursework in things like stochastic calculus.
 
also things like stochastic calculus, measure theory and PDEs are really not the focus of buy side quants (but more relevent to banks) - buyside firms care and value that you understand linear regression in depth more than if you understand girsanov's or change in numeraire
 
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