Investment banks’ markets staff still flocking to sink-or-swim hedge funds

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While a lot of hedge funds bemoan the lack of talent coming out of investment banks now, two large firms continue to hire from the sell-side – Millennium Management and BlueCrest Capital Management.

True to form, both firms have hired staff who have previously worked within investment banks’ markets divisions so far this year.

Andrew McDougall, who was previously head of emerging markets rates trading at Barclays, has just joined BlueCrest Capital Management as an emerging markets portfolio manager.

McDougall has been working on the buy-side for some time, however, and joins BlueCrest from BTG Pactual, where he was a macro emerging markets portfolio manager on its GEMM fund. BTG has been cutting jobs in its London hedge fund unit for nearly a year.

BlueCrest has also taken on Dr Jim Hough, the former head of European inflation trading at Royal Bank of Scotland, who was most recently a portfolio manager at Brevan Howard. He joined as a portfolio manager earlier this month. In Singapore, it's also hired Amol Navandar as an emerging markets macro portfolio manager. He was previously a director for in EM FX options trading at Deutsche Bank.

Meanwhile, Millennium Capital has just hired John Gousias from HSBC. He had responsibility for trading investment grade and high yield bonds in London.

Nitin Sharma, who was an executive director in equity research at J.P. Morgan Cazenove, has also just signed up to Millennium. He worked at J.P. Morgan for over eight years, having previously worked as a senior manager at EY.

Both hedge funds have a reputation for hiring traders and analysts from the sell-side, despite the more recent approach among hedge funds to hire and train their own staff following the closure of investment banks’ proprietary trading desks.

However, both hedge funds also have a reputation for being intolerant of underperformance among their investment staff. At Millennium, traders are given a small amount of capital to begin with, and if you can cut it then more money is handed over. If not, it's likely you'll be shown the door.

Meanwhile, BlueCrest’s CFO Andrew Dodd has said in the past: “If we don’t like a trader’s risk, then departures can be quite abrupt.”


Photo: Getty Images

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