Finance Still Needs Scientists, Group Says

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Wall Street is on its back, but scientists would be wise to take a contrarian approach and investigate careers in finance, says the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

In a three-part feature on financial careers in its official publication, Science, the association likens preparing to enter the industry to the old investing maxim, "buy low, sell high." It also predicts demand for quantitative expertise and rigorous analysis will grow as financial activities are subjected to greater regulation and oversight.

"Even though this is a very tough time to find a job on Wall Street, this is the right time to seek out the skills to find a job on Wall Street," Lee Maclin, a financial systems executive who teaches mathematical finance at NYU, says in a podcast that's part of the Science Careers feature. "Maclin also predicts that the financial markets will probably recover from the current slump before Main Street recovers - which means that finance jobs will be available before a lot of other jobs," Science Careers says.

The other items in the package are articles discussing the outlook for the two main career paths for scientists in finance: quant analysts, and science-trained financial analysts who examine science-driven companies (such as technology and biotech) as investments.