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Suryansh Bhargava is a 3rd year Undergraduate pursuing a Dual Degree (B.Tech+M.Tech) in Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Sciences.
“Intern lag gayi!” I was euphoric to find that I have been one of the lucky guys to secure an intern in the very first month of internship season. One and a half month into the intern, my stay at JPMorgan Chase has been quite pleasant.
The first round of screening is done on the basis of resume. Past finance/coding interns improve your chances of getting your resume shortlisted. Having done a few finance projects at IIM-L last summers helped my case. Resume shortlisting is followed by a test which is based on algos, probability and maths. The test is fairly difficult and you would want to brush up these topics (mainly DSA) for the test and the PI (personal interview). The PI comprises of 2 rounds normally being around 20-30 minutes each. Both the rounds are technical in nature. It will mostly cover algos but they might ask you some basic finance concepts too. Also, giving multiple approaches to solving the same question and explaining the pros and cons of each helps.
They had shortlisted roughly 145 students on the basis of the resume and around 45 students for the PIs. So, if you do decently well in the test, you can expect to be called for the PIs.
Tip: they might go through your answer sheet during the interview and ask back questions that you couldn’t solve in the test.
About the office:
The first thing you will notice upon entering the JPMC office is that it is literally wall-less, whether you are an executive director or a vice president or an intern, you get to have the same office space. This makes it really easy to approach almost anyone there. People are really helpful and even willing to take out their calendar time and help you with your project.
Coming to work, what to expect:
There are many sub-divisions inside CIB (investment banking division where all the interns are placed). 4 of us interns are in the FX dept, 1 in credits and 1 in trades. Your work depends on which teams you are assigned to. I am working closely with an intern from Singapore. I have three direct bosses; one in my office, one from US and another from UK. So, even if I come in early or stay up late, I’m always sure to find someone to discuss the project with. I have been working on a web-based tool that displays real time pricing/bid/ask etc that is directly used by the traders. My job is to add new functionalities to the tool. For example, one of the tasks I have been given is to develop new queries for the kdb (kdb database is widely used by financial institutions for storing real-time & historical data) and incorporate it into the code. Two of my co-interns are working on a project in which they have to simulate the exchanges (exchanges, as some of you might be familiar, are places where trading of stocks, futures, currencies etc takes place). The best part of the work that you do here is that it gets immediately integrated with the firm’s existing projects which is a win-win for both the company as well as yourself. As far as the project reviews are concerned, you have to give updates about your project to your boss every alternate day.
The learning curve is indeed steep. I have been learning new programming languages/APIs every week for my project. The work is challenging and if you get stuck, you can contact experts from all over the world to help you out. You will spend most of the time coding here and not much knowledge of finance is actually required to do well in the projects.
Another perk: it feels awesome to work with three desktop screens.
As cliched as it may sound, “work hard, party harder” is the motto of the team. They throw really amazing parties.
Food, stay and daily commute:
My usual office timings are pretty chill from 12 to 9:30. You will most likely be living in insti, since the office is at Powai. I personally liked the office cafeteria food, in fact I found it to be much better than our regular mess food. In any case, you will have tons of options to eat at Hiranandani. Also, company offers cab services if you stay back a bit late.
Fun fact: You would be able to reach the campus faster on foot compared to taking an auto, thanks to the pathetic traffic during peak hours.
All in all, working here was a great learning experience for me, and I would recommend it to all coding enthu juniors.
If you have any queries, feel free to contact me.