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Would an MBA be useful for me??

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Would an MBA be useful for me?? [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 02:42
Hi

my name is Riccardo, I am 21 years old and am currently in my third year of undergraduate program at Bocconi University in Milan, Italy. I recently did the GMAT and scored 750 with a 6.0 AWA. I am studying Finance, and my chief objective is to find a job in the Equities Trading Area of a big investment bank such as Goldman, Merril Lynch, etc.

My problem is the following: i have the chance to continue studying, doing a Master of Science in Finance here at Bocconi for the next 2 years, or start looking for a job and then try to enter in a good MBA program (i thought Harvard or Stanford) after 2 or 3 years work experience in a prestigious bank. The point is: will an MBA be useful FOR THE CAREER I WANT TO PURSUE??

I am a bit confused if the MBA only builds up for future business leaders or if it could be useful also for me who wants to become a trader or investment manager.

Any help would be appreciated

Thanks!!

Riccardo
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 [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 05:36
Prima di tutto, congratulationi ad essere a Bocconi. Congratulatzioni sul GMAT anche, mamma mia! In confronto a la tua domanda.... e un po difficile dir' di si or di no ....

That is, a Masters in Financial Engineering will prepare you very well for a career in quantitative finance and trading. In my experience, those with an MFE tend to go more into the software development side of things - working on arbitrage programs, etc, but I'm sure someone here can speak ot this better than I can. In other words, an Masters in Finance can get you to the sales and trading desk of a major firm, yes.

An MBA from Harvard or Stanford would also do the trick. I'd also point out that it doesnt have to be from Harvard or Stanford - don't be so arrogant so as to presume you will choose from one of these two - you may very well not be (though harvard does like the young applicants). In any case, if you do pursue an MBA I'd suggest you look a little bit beyond Harvard and Stanford. Wharton and Chicago are just as well placed (and maybe even better) for a career in Sales and Trading. Stern and Columbia as well would likely do very well in this area. I know you are at the Harvard of Italy right now but .... All I'm trying to say is look beyond rank, and look at which schools truly excel in this area.

So, as to your question - can an MBA get you on a prop/trading desk or get you into investment management / wealth management on either the buy side or sell side?

Absolutely. It is a common path, and often with many of the firms you seek. For instance see: http://www.chicagogsb.edu/corp/hire/employmentreports/

As to which one will serve you better --- I think you need to do a few things.

1) Start by comparing placement statistics. I know Bocconi is very respected within Europe, and especially within Italy, but I really dont know
how well it does in recruiting. That is, does Goldman come to campus? Does Lehman? At top MBA programs, you will find all the top investment banks.
2) Decide if you want to work in the US or in Europe. Although a good percentage of people pursuing an MBA in the US do move to Europe or Asia for their jobs, a large percentage do not. Odds are, if you pursue an MBA in the US, you will stay in the US.
3) Consider long term prestige. I seriously considered applying to European MBA programs - including INSEAD/IESE etc ... and even Bocconi - they keep calling me in fact - but I decided not to. The reason was that I came to realize that a top MBA education in the US carried almost as much weight in Europe. That is, recruiters in Europe knew the names of top MBA programs in the US. I found that, to some extent, people in the US were less familiar with european names. But you really should be deciding based on #1 and #2 .

So, without knowing how strong Bocconi is in this area, I don't know which is better for you. I do know that a top MBA program can get you into the career path you seek.

Bouna fortuna amico mio!
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 [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 05:43
Ciao Riccardo,
ti faccio anch'io i miei complimenti :-D
I personally think you're definitely too young to be thinking of an MBA. A Master in Finance seems a very good idea but don't stick to Bocconi, go abroad, do it in London or in the US (pick a prestigious university as rhyme said, I perfectly agree).
An international exposure would look better on your CV, no matter what. If you are adamant that you'll be working in finance, consider investing on a CFA as well.
In bocca al lupo, fammi un fischio se magari vuoi che chattiamo in msn qualche volta, ciao! :-)

Last edited by Lorenzino on 10 Mar 2007, 07:05, edited 1 time in total.
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 [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 05:49
Right I forgot to mention it .... but keep in mind that a lot of MBA programs expect work experience. Some will accept right out of school, but its few and far between.
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 [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 11:37
mamma mia! avete entusiasmo!

Rhyme said most of what I wanted to say, Including the Italian stuff ;)
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 [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 11:52
Forget about the investment banking trading....

Go find a trading position on a prop desk that will give you money to trade. Google First New York Securities and check out their Assistant Trader position and go look for other firms that do the similar thing FNYS does. You won't do much as a noob on an investbanking desk.
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 [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 13:16
gmatclb wrote:
Forget about the investment banking trading....

Go find a trading position on a prop desk that will give you money to trade. Google First New York Securities and check out their Assistant Trader position and go look for other firms that do the similar thing FNYS does. You won't do much as a noob on an investbanking desk.


What about as a Level 60 mage with +5 sunderarmour who can cast intimidating shout?
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 [#permalink] New post 10 Mar 2007, 22:59
Please, gentlemen! Talk more Italian to me!
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 [#permalink] New post 11 Mar 2007, 05:54
aaudetat wrote:
Please, gentlemen! Talk more Italian to me!


haha va bene ;)
  [#permalink] 11 Mar 2007, 05:54
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