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Optiver intern stories: careers in trading

Junsu
Quantitative Trading Intern, Taiwan

Tell us about your training during the summer internship

The summer internship consists of three parts: options theory, simulated trading, and research project. For the first 2 weeks, our intern class learned options theory to cover the fundamental concepts, before simulated trading.

Then, we traded index options using internal GUI. During simulated trading, we learned extensively about trading, including managing the risk of your book and making decisions based on data in real-time. This knowledge can only be acquired through practice, instead of traditional lectures.

Lastly, we were assigned to each team and worked on a project to solve some of the practical problems that the teams were facing. During the project, not only did my researcher mentors help me tackle technical issues, but traders also helped me produce more practical results.

Describe your role

My research project was about pricing and trading volatility derivatives. I read academic papers daily and implemented theories on the dynamics of volatility by python code. I designed a trading strategy based on financial intuition and backtested it is using an internal platform.

What’s your favourite thing about working at Optiver?

I really like the weekly massage, delicious food, and the independence I was given, which usually isn’t expected, until you get some experience, in the financial industry.

What one key thing that you’ve learnt during your internship?

Optiver allowed me to apply theoretical findings that I learned from school to developing a research project in a trading firm.

What’s a piece of advice that you’d give to students applying for an internship at Optiver?

Don’t worry if you don’t have any prior knowledge or experience in trading. Optiver wants to see your thought process and your potential to be a high performer. When solving technical problems during an interview, elaborate on your thoughts for the interviewers can follow your thought process. If you’re asked a complicated question, break it down into several simple sub-problems, and don’t be afraid to approximate the answer using reasonable assumptions.

Describe Optiver in 3 words

Autonomous, rewarding, and collaborative.

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