Steps Needed to Become a Quant Trader

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Article
Intermediate
3

Shobhit Seth

23 May, 2018

in Trading Careers

  • Comfortable With Failure
    A quant keeps looking for innovative trading ideas. Even if an idea seems foolproof, dynamic market conditions may render it a bust. Many aspiring quant traders fail because they get stuck on an idea and keep trying to make it work despite hostile market conditions. They may find it difficult to accept failure and are thus unwilling to let go of their concept. On the other hand, successful quants follow a dynamic detachment approach and quickly move on to other models and concepts as soon as they find challenges in existing ones.
  • Innovative Mindset
    The trading world is highly dynamic, and no concept can make money for long. With algorithms pitted against algorithms and each trying to out perform the others, only the one with better and unique strategies can survive. A quant needs to keep looking for new innovative trading ideas to seize profitable opportunities that may vanish quickly. It is a never-ending cycle.

In Summary
Quant trading requires advanced-level skills in finance, mathematics and computer programming. Big salaries and sky-rocketing bonuses attract many candidates, so getting that first job can be a challenge. Beyond that, continued success requires constant innovation, comfort with risk and long working hours.

Shobhit Seth can be contacted at: FuturesOptionsEtc

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Thanks for a morning article to start the day.

Thing I learned from this, is that Quants seem to be no better than conventional traders.

Despite having multiple degrees in maths and engineering and programming:
* they still need a "traders temperament"; maths is not enough, they still need to find patterns that are profitable.
* they are taking similar risks to conventional traders. "they can make 10 trades, lose on first eight, and make profit on last 2". I read that in Murphy, Alan Farley, et al. Thats a meme going back to Livermore.
* "comfortable with failure": markets are dynamic, good ideas become unprofitable. All their maths knowledge doesnt protect them from a changing market.

Broadly, it seems the issues normal traders face, the quants face as well. Their maths doesnt save them. its almost like algos are the new "indicators". (Not knocking indicators. I use them all the time.)

Might have been more interesting to know how often quants trade per day, their preferred time-frames, the size of the market move they aim to gain, etc.
How may quants go bust as opposed those that keep going to profitability, etc.

Article was too broad, and superficial.

Gave it a 5.

Jul 06, 2018

Member (5969 posts)

Re: Steps Needed to Become a Quant Trader

Life of quant trader is actually very interesting! Their concepts, strategies, and skills are the best to trade.

Jul 06, 2018

Member (25 posts)

Wanna be Quant? Probably not anymore after reading this

Member (11 posts)

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