Best way to get into trading if you are willing to take the risk involved, join a private proprietary trading firm; but no, not "day trading" firm don't get me wrong. Firms like GETCO, Jane Street, Optiver, Chicago Trading Company, Labrache, Peak 6, etc. These are examples of the bigher ones, there are some smaller ones that give you the potential to join big guys later. You can PM me for more details. You need to get into a firm that gives you training, support in research and IT system, and gives you money to trade. There should not be any desk fee/accounting opening fee involved. These firms care less about your degree than your actual potential in trading. Actually very few of them like to consider PhD except Jane Street, or unless it is for a ultra high frequency trader/developer position. You'll have to go through tests, brain teasers, technical questions, not to see how skills you are in quant or numeric skills; but to determine if you are fit for trading. For firms like Optiver, they hire dozens of traders each year, these people will learn trading for a few weeks to few months, then start trading real money. After 1 year, half of them will be fired because of below-standard performance. By the end of 2nd year, another half will be fired for for the same reason. The 1/4 that remains are considered worthy traders. Not the best by all means (a few of them are the best, in the market) but these people certainly have the record to show it as well. Trading is all about track record, as a recruiting consultant in proprietary trading space, I care about traders' pnl more than anything. Of course their trading styles have to fit whatever trading firms I am hiring for. Also as a trader, 1 year of bad trading record can potential ruin your career, 2 years then you are pretty much done. If you can make big numbers, even at a small firm, the big guys would dive to get you on the team. I know a guy who traded European options for one year, made EUR 10mil, quitted because the bonus were paid as much as he expected. Traded his own account for 2 years, and then was hired into Citigroup's Principal Strategy. It's all about track record.