Over the past few years, big banks have begun to reduce the size of their proprietary trading desks.
In the worst-case scenario, some prop desks were closed for good as financial firms attempted to overcome the industry’s struggles and to weather the new regulations that followed.
“I think we’re dealing with a consolidated industry,” Rob Friesen, President and COO of Bright Trading, LLC, told StreetID. “Any job that takes a piece of paper and does this with it,” he gestured, “moves it from this side of the desk to this side of the desk, why can’t that job be automated? Are the margins there for redundant jobs?”
Whatever the answer, “There is consolidation occurring,” Friesen said.
When the JOBS Act was first promoted to the financial sector, its supporters claimed that it would drastically change the way hedge fund managers conduct business. Their promises were quite persuasive — after months of promotions, many were convinced that the JOBS Act would fix some of the industry’s problems — most notably the way it advertises to investors.
Right now, hedge funds cannot technically advertise to anyone. They cannot solicit potential investors — they must find a way to cleverly (but legally) inspire accredited investors to come to them, ask questions, and hope they’ll stick around. It’s not an easy business by any means, but with the potential to make billions of dollars a year, enterprising individuals are frequently attracted to the hedge fund industry.
Are financial institutions — namely hedge funds — prepared to market themselves to investors when the JOBS Act rules are issued in the next six to 12 months?
Will Thompson, co-founder and CEO of HedgeComm (a marketing and PR agency that focuses on the alternative investment industry), has found that few hedge funds have a proper business plan — let alone a marketing plan.
“What hedge fund managers want to do is promote their expertise and at the end of the day raise assets,” he told StreetID. Continue reading
Californian financial firm Vertical Capital Markets Group, which specializes in providing a more traditional value strategy to an alternative asset class, is looking to add new talent to its team.
“In the capital markets group we’re actually looking for wholesalers,” Bayard Closser, President of Vertical Capital Markets Group, told StreetID. “We have a couple positions open for individuals that are wholesaling directly to the financial intermediaries, to the broker-dealer community and the registered investment advisors — both externally, as well as internal wholesalers, to… We have a need for strategic account, business development types of roles. Between now and the end of the year we’ll hire a number of wholesalers as well as strategic account people. We have marketing positions and operations roles as well.”
Closser said that his company has already brought on credit underwriters and credit analysts. The firm also has its own loan servicing group.
All over the world, financial services firms are trying to overcome any and all obstacles that could prevent them from being compliant. The task is far from easy; from increasing government regulation domestically to changes and adjustments to regulation abroad, compliance officers must work hard to stay ahead of the curve.
Dale A. Walters knows this better than anyone. As the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Compliance Officer of KeatsConnelly, he deals with these problems every single day.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the search for a new job. But don’t get discouraged — just follow David Couper’s advice.
As a career coach and author of Outsiders on the Inside: How to Create a Winning Career…Even When You Don’t Fit In!, Couper has helped job seekers improve their ability to market and promote themselves to employers. Now he is here to help StreetID members get an edge in the job market.
What’s a surefire indicator that hedge funds are on the rise? Take a look at their presence
on college campuses.
From Cornell, whose student-run hedge fund beat Wall Street returns to the University of Michigan, which allows its students to manage as much as $250,000, student hedge fund are becoming a more prominent part of financial education.
Their success has attracted the attention of Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan,
which is in the process of launching its own student hedge fund within the school’s
Financial Management Association. Continue reading
Regal Investment Advisors, LLC is among Forbes’ Top 50 Wealth Managers list. At number 14, Regal is one of the fastest-growing companies on the list.
“We have 140 brokers across the United States,” John Kailunas, founder and CEO of
Regal Financial Group, Regal Investment Advisors and Regulus Advisors, told StreetID. “We’re licensed in all 50 states. We’re looking to expand dramatically.”
The Kentwood, Michigan-based RIA has set its sights on Tampa Bay, Florida for future growth. Continue reading
It seems that the volatile housing market might be having a positive impact on the financial sector.
Jack Ablin, Executive VP and Chief Investment Officer of BMO Private Bank, told StreetID that job growth has occurred within the “area of mortgage or anything related to housing.”
“I would say that has been expanding over the last couple of quarters,” said Ablin. “Mortgage activity is up. Banks, in many cases, do want to lend now on the lower valuation. I guess from that perspective, yes, we are seeing some incremental growth.” Continue reading
The financial sector may be far stronger than most people realize.
In an interview with StreetID, former Morgan Stanley exec Bob Auer offered an interesting explanation for Wall Street’s recovery.
“I think to just look at numbers on Wall Street and say, ‘It looks like it’s struggling’ — it’s contracting in a very healthy way,” said Auer. “It’s almost like a big fat guy that is losing weight. To say, ‘Oh, he’s just not the same guy…’ No — he’s getting healthier and better.”
Auer served as the Vice President of Investments for Morgan Stanley from 1986 through August 2007. He advised roughly 350 accounts with total AUM in excess of $100 million. Continue reading