Quants are leaving Goldman and Credit Suisse before bonuses

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Banks are having a hard time keeping people central to their systematic trading aspirations despite the fact that bonuses are coming up.

Martin Priego Wood, director for quantitative strategies at Credit Suisse, left the bank to join Eisler Capital earlier this month. Similarly, Yashar Aghababaie, a managing director at Goldman Sachs, who led design and deployment of trading algorithms and risk management systems among other things, has joined Chicago Trading Company.

Both men left their respective firms before receiving bonuses for the previous year.

Wood started his career at Credit Suisse in late 2009 and had been there ever since before leaving it to join Eisler. A Ph.D. in Aeronautics from Imperial College London, he earned his master's degree in Physics of Complex Systems from the National University of Distance Education in Spain while working at Credit Suisse. At Eisler, he will handle quantitative strategies and technology.

Founded by Goldman Sachs partner Edward Eisler in late 2015, Eisler Capital has been hiring selectively. The firm started with two employees and expanded to 13 in 2016. Last year, the hedge fund made a handful of significant hires. It paid out  £476k on an average per employee and £2m to its senior management team in 2016

Meanwhile, Aghababaie, who started his career at Goldman Sachs and spent over 12 years there, has opted to go to Chicago Trading Company, a derivatives trading firm, as a head of systematic trading instead of joining a hedge fund. Aghababaie joined Goldman as a vice president in 2005, specializing in quantitative, algorithmic volatility trading, and became managing director in 2011. Alongside electronic trading and risk management, he also supervised market microstructure research, system architecture, and business development and strategy. He is a Ph.D. in high energy physics, effective Lagrangians, and supergravity, who served as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto before joining Goldman.

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