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Nikkei
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Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Being a quant - is it a right choice for a quantitative modeler?

January 25th, 2014, 2:11 am

Update: currently I work as a statistician/software developer outside of financial sector. My job does involve quant modeling, but not as much as I originally intended, so I am thinking about moving on. I realized that the main problem about getting a "real" quant modeling position is that they are very few, be it in or outside Finance. Therefore it's a bit unrealistic to count on finding one within a short job search window around graduation time. Things like recession, necessity to relocate, and being an immigrant make it even harder. The search time may very well be measured in years, and one has to adjust for that one way or another.
 
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liam
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Joined: November 16th, 2004, 11:51 am

Being a quant - is it a right choice for a quantitative modeler?

January 25th, 2014, 12:31 pm

Sounds good, albeit concerned about the "wanting to move on" bit.I am quite curious about this - would you say the reason are purist and intellectual or would you say it's prudent to move? I say this as it is possible to be too intellectually purist and purists never find what they're looking for. However on the flip side you should ask yourself if the non-modelling portion of your job plays to your strengths and, more importantly, could put you in a position where you're outshone by better placed colleagues, in which case this is a genuine concern.Personally there's a lot of a non-mathematical stuff that comes with modelling, no matter what industry or role you do. This is why people fundamentally don't understand it - you have to be adaptable. e.g. I'm building a back-tested weather model where there's a lot of reading reports, understanding weather patterns and understanding the underlying that are MORE important than the model itself. The model is the logic engine, but the non-modelling stuff can drive the actual information and assumptions and hence the actual validity. Even then there's stuff that just come with a job that you can't avoid - it's when you see it as part of the picture that you'll win. What I like about it is that there isn't much there that trips me up, but I do have to be careful as thing such as my poor attention to detail I have to be careful. However unlike when I was doing credit risk work it isn't seen as a borderline national security scandal when I miss a clause in legal docs, spell wrongly on a report or run the wrong case of a model.The points above are probably re-iterations of what the rest have said. Mainly though I would look at something more fundamental - I find it hard to be sure about what the issue really is - perhaps talk to colleagues? Unlike door to door sales generic advice is useless here and you need to develop the art of having your own counsel.
 
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Nikkei
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Posts: 208
Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Being a quant - is it a right choice for a quantitative modeler?

January 25th, 2014, 6:36 pm

I am quite curious about this - would you say the reason are purist and intellectual or would you say it's prudent to move?--It's both purist and prudent. To elaborate on the latter, if I believe my strengths are in the area of quant modeling, then my job security will be highest in a position where the quant modeling part is maximized. I already said that I don't hope to increase it to 100%, but I guess there is a room for improvement compared to my current job.
 
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liam
Posts: 175
Joined: November 16th, 2004, 11:51 am

Being a quant - is it a right choice for a quantitative modeler?

January 26th, 2014, 12:08 am

I would be curious as to the reasons why statisticians/statistical modelers always seem to want to be pure quants. Are there any serious issues with the role that you feel put you at a disadvantage compared to others?I don't mean that as an attack, it's always useful for me to understand these things. Also, your frustration is understandable - I've gone through being dismissed from a job where the quant content was 0-10% and it was frustrating and isolating where every Tom, Dick and Harry thought they understood labor markets but actually had no clue. Of note though is that role was extremely non-mathematical, definitely more so than a statistician's would be, so bear that in mind.Finally, I meant to say this earlier, but these forums can be an addiction and a crutch, albeit a good source of ideas. Thing is I can't really tell if the way you come across is more about the way you write, or if it reflects how you think, so finding someone close to you that understands this is worth looking for.
 
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Nikkei
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Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Being a quant - is it a right choice for a quantitative modeler?

January 26th, 2014, 5:55 pm

I would be curious as to the reasons why statisticians/statistical modelers always seem to want to be pure quants.--Because they like it per se (otherwise, why bother to get a PhD in Statistics?) and feel the most confident and secure in a position where quant modeling skills add value to the company. As an example, consider a guy who got an MD, likes surgery, and wants to be a surgeon. He might as well become a physician or even a sales guy selling medical equipment, but he has little aptitude and/or desire for any of that. Unfortunately for him, the demand for surgeons is very low compared to the other two, so he has to be prepared for that.
 
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liam
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Joined: November 16th, 2004, 11:51 am

Being a quant - is it a right choice for a quantitative modeler?

January 27th, 2014, 10:55 pm

QuoteOriginally posted by: NikkeiI would be curious as to the reasons why statisticians/statistical modelers always seem to want to be pure quants.--Because they like it per se (otherwise, why bother to get a PhD in Statistics?) and feel the most confident and secure in a position where quant modeling skills add value to the company. As an example, consider a guy who got an MD, likes surgery, and wants to be a surgeon. He might as well become a physician or even a sales guy selling medical equipment, but he has little aptitude and/or desire for any of that. Unfortunately for him, the demand for surgeons is very low compared to the other two, so he has to be prepared for that.That's a fair answer and I understand the ideological concerns - some people prefer to be analysts/statisticians/traders etc that use what quants/modellers build, others prefer to be the architect/ideas person. Why do you say your aptitude isn't that of an ideal statistician? What I was looking for was something more specific in your role/day to day activities that does this?
 
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Nikkei
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Joined: January 11th, 2005, 5:02 pm

Being a quant - is it a right choice for a quantitative modeler?

January 28th, 2014, 1:03 am

I don't think I understand the question.
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