I was interested in trading but didn’t know much about it. I went into consulting after graduation, but I soon felt that it wasn’t right for me. Around this time, I spoke with a friend from University who was a trader at SIG, and I decided to apply. I had been interviewing at another financial services firm when I got my offer. When the other firm also spoke really highly of SIG, I knew I was making the right decision to join.
The program is a mix of training on the desk, in the classroom, and in mock trading sessions. Our classroom training covered basic theory as well as introductions to trading, product structures, and poker. When I found out I had been selected to go to the US for additional training, I was pretty excited. Everything is bigger at the HQ and the wealth of knowledge to draw upon is immense. Our poker classes were taught by WSOP winners and the owners of the firm were right there on the trading floor. I originally went to the US for 9-12 months of training, but that quickly turned into 18 months, which morphed into 3 years. After completing the initial training I stayed on in the US as a full-time trader, managing books in both single stocks and later indices. This took my experience to a whole new level. Throughout it all, I’ve worked with a bunch of really smart, impressive people all pursuing a common goal. It’s been great.
So much centres around the relationships I built in the US with business and technical teams. We’re thinking differently about how we trade and make decisions, how we employ technology, and continuing to maintain relationships with the exchanges and brokers we interact with daily. I’ve been able to help design new technical solutions that we’re implementing and participate in market making forums, which have been fascinating.
Before the market open, I read about market happenings overnight to prep for the day. I’ll set up for the day – deciding how I want to set vols and if we have any axes. We’ll also collaborate with research analysts and discuss the plan for the day across the desk. After the open, my focus is on trading, talking to brokers and collaborating with each other about particular trading decisions. After the close, we’ll debrief on how the day went and talk about what we could improve upon and/or change in how we approached our decisions.
My career at SIG has taken different paths – from Sydney to the US and back. When I first started, I supported and shadowed traders. I continued to grow my knowledge on the desk and in the education program and attended the market making class where I learned SIG’s proprietary strategies. After class, I took on my own book to trade, the size and complexity of which continues to grow. I’ve also worked on non-trading related projects. The opportunities I’ve had to learn and grow are limitless. Prior to joining SIG, I didn’t even know this type of job existed and I feel pretty lucky to have stumbled upon it. Every day is a genuinely new and interesting challenge, much more so than I’d ever anticipated.