As a third year student, the biggest question in one’s mind which keeps popping up again and again in your mind is, “Oye, What’s the scene for intern?” And even though the placements in IITB are excellent, the intern scene is very sad. Not many people get good internships through our very own PT cell, responsible for getting us interns. So, it’s one of the most important job as a thirdie to keep a backup intern for yourself through a contact or any other source because until and unless you are very lucky or in CS / Elec, it is very likely that you might not end up with a PT Cell intern.
One of the options is applying in foreign universities for summer projects, which is a good idea actually, as it gives you a paid holiday and something useful if you are interested in core. But as I was inclined a little towards finance or rather anything apart from core, I managed to keep a backup intern in Motilal Oswal, which is one of the biggest brokerage firm in India and has a decent investment banking department too. So, I got there mostly by contact. I landed up in the proprietary division of Motilal Oswal with more or less a quant profile.
About the Intern:
Proprietary trading is the trading done with one’s own property i.e. when Motilal Oswal trades for itself only. So, I was in a room full of traders working on different strategies to earn profits by exploring various market factors. This department works only on Options (a kind of derivative), So I was asked to study for the 1st few days about options and related theories. If you are a finance intern enthusiast, keeping the book J.C. Hull can be a good idea (referred to as ‘bible’ in the finance industry). The other thing which is a must in the finance interns is your ability to play with excel. Yes, MS Excel has a lot to offer which most of us don’t know generally. So, more or less 1st week was gone in getting comfortable with Options and Excel. Then I was asked to work on my project which was to develop a trading strategy using Condor Spread (you might have heard about bull or bear spread). The project was to be done by using existing strategies, historical data from the past and coming up with a uniform strategy with supported data for better returns and more importantly lesser risks. Most of the finance interns from IIT Bombay (atleast in Barclays and Morgan Stanley) do similar kind of work on different spreads/derivatives though. MY second project is based on dispersion trading which is again a different kind of strategy and works on other parameters (which I am going to start from tomorrow)
About the work experience:
Motilal Oswal is a big company as such, but being not one of the MNCs, there is no internship program as such. So, there is no such thing as an orientation or a good stipend or relaxed rules for interns (like allowing semi-formals). Also, getting an intern through contact might make you land up without a profile and hence will be asked to any work available or to just observe what is going or rather do nothing productive. So, having such an experience from the past, I ensured that I get proper work, otherwise there won’t be any chance to learn. So, again working in not any of the MNCs has a benefit that you are treated as an employee and has to abide by the strict rules and given full responsibility for your project which initially looks pressurising but in the end helps you to learn a lot. The work atmosphere in most of the trading rooms (finance companies) is generally light and you might see them swearing a lot which makes it very comfortable for you.
5 things I hate about my intern:
2. Wearing formals daily
3. No co-interns
4. Travelling a lot like for 3 hours per day
5. Waking up at 6 in the morning.
5 things I love about my intern:
1. Responsibility given like an employee to come up with results and conclusions
2. Profile : One of the best possible for an intern in finance sector
3. People around swearing like they were in a hostel
4. Air conditioning all the time in summers 😛
5. Awesome breakfasts and Tea
Pre-requisites for a finance intern:
Nothing as such. Should have good analytical skills. And also should be able to love and play with numbers. You should be aware of the general terms in Statistics. A little knowledge in finance might help and if you know coding it might help you in the intern itself.