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hedge fund new careers

There are many hedge fund-related organizations to join and they represent great networking opportunities – even as a student. The Hedge Fund Association, or HFA, is one such group to join if you’re looking for hedge fund networking opportunities.  The HFA is a non-profit, international trade and lobbying group “devoted to advancing transparency, development and trust in alternative investments.” The HFA is decidedly nonpartisan, which separates it from a few similar hedge fund associations.

In order to join HFA, one must be in one of the following membership groups:

  • hedge fund managers
  • fund of funds managers
  • hedge fund professionals
  • investors
  • service providers
  • students

Student membership has some good benefits, including:

  • discounts to hedge fund conferences and other important networking events
  • discounts to various financial publications
  • access to other HFA members
  • access to white papers and other exciting hedge fund research
  • 40% discount on Wiley Global Finance’s new book by Paul Darbyshire and David Hampton, Hedge Fund Modeling and Analysis using Excel and VBA

Arguably, the most important of these benefits is the conference and event discount.  Conferences and other events are valuable sources of knowledge and should be attended by students for the networking opportunities.  The most difficult part of attending events for many students is affording the generally high conference fees.

For example, the cost of Financial Research Associates, LLC’s two-day Hedge Fund Investment & Operations Boot Camp is $1,695, not including travel costs, a hotel room, and meals.  As an HFA member, you can receive a 15% discount off the conference fee.

Networking Advice for Students

Once you make arrangements to attend a conference or other networking event, make the most of it.  Dress appropriately: wear properly-fitting business attire.  Introduce yourself to everyone, from people you want to work for to vendors and  people you bump into grabbing coffee.  Let them know you’re a student interested in breaking into the hedge fund world.  If you wind up in a decent conversation, ask for contact information and if you may contact them in the future.  Send them a short email after the conference reminding them of who you are and thanking them for their contact information.  Add them on LinkedIn.  You never know who might be helpful to you in your future job search!

To join the HFA, students must be enrolled in a course relevant to hedge funds or the hedge fund industry.  Annual membership for one student is just $100.

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The financial job market has shifted significantly over the past few months. When we are asked by candidates how to gain a competitive edge in this fast-moving environment, we often suggest brushing up on your financial modeling and valuation skills through training at The Investment Banking Institute (IBI).

Over the past seven years, IBI has trained thousands of professionals who are currently working or have worked with some of the most prestigious hedge fund firms on Wall Street. We recently caught up with Aaron Hurwitz, IBI Director, for his perspective on today’s financial job market.

How has the crisis among bulge bracket firms affected people in hedge fund jobs?

It has affected people in the sense that some prime brokers who were serving the hedge fund industry went bust. And the hedge funds that were using these brokers have had a hard time lately. Rather than hiring people in hedge fund jobs, they are focusing on unwinding their positions and restructuring right now.

On the other hand, firms that invest in distressed assets, for example, are expanding and hiring. There’s much more of that going on – distressed assets, distressed debt – so restructuring firms and boutiques are going to be very busy.

In addition to distressed assets and debt, are there any other pockets of opportunity?

Even in oil and gas there’s still a lot going on. There has always been activity happening in new spaces, in healthcare, new life science ventures, new pharmaceutical and biotech companies coming up that get bought out by larger companies. Healthcare is one industry that almost never seems to see a down trend. Some of the best-performing stocks right now are in that sector.

Is this more than a natural business cycle?

This economic crisis is a natural cycle that happens every few years. There are always layoffs, there is always restructuring. This is a little worse than normal, of course, but things will come back even stronger.

In 2007, for example, there were more private equity deals done, on a dollar basis, more money invested in private equity transactions than in many of the years leading up to that. It’s natural to have some pull-back after that.

This is worse than normal but it’s not the end of the world. There will be a different landscape when things come back but the work is going to be there, the industry is going to be there. Some of the main players may change; there may be some surprises, but we’re going to be stronger than ever, and the industry will probably be even bigger than ever.

On behalf of our members, has negotiated a special discount for IBI training. JobSearchDigest members receive $100 off the price of training simply by mentioning Job Search Digest when they call to register. Investment Banking Institute can be reached at 212-380-7027 or visit:

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