Originally Posted by HedgeFundHotSHot
hedge funds like ppl who r readily deployable, never ppl they have to mold; and r we refering to quant analysts or analysts who do grunt work? the latter can get in out of undergrad yes, but the former needs graduate degrees in a quantitative discipline
with the last few statements u made- it dosent matter the brand yes, but pay varies widely between funds, the variance is way more than IB; moves between HFS r hard.
If you look at the mega funds like D.E.Shaw, Citadel, etc., they have an active undergraduate recruiting system but "working at a hedge fund" per see is a bit of a misnomer because its all dependent on what you'll be doing at the fund.
Any big fund can hire a few "finance" grads to work in middle office/back-office to mark-to-market books and check PnL, but I'm more inclined to agree with the poster that these types of funds are hiring quantitative majors ("quant fin, computer science, physics, mathematics, etc.) for front office junior roles.
For smaller funds that don't have the resources to hand-hold an undergrad, they'll be more inclined to hire quantitative master/phD students that have the raw fundamentals and can hit the ground hard from the get-go.
In response to whether its better to do IBD/fundamental eq-research/trading, pursue what you enjoy and do well.
There are so many types of funds nowadays and you can never predict what will be the NEXT BIG THING.
Look at the Michael Milken junk-bond boom in the 1980s.
IT Dot-com IPO boom in the 2000s.
And mortgages in 2005-08.
Back in 2005 when I joined Lehman, Mortgage research/trading WAS THE PLACE TO BE.
Now you barely can get someone to look at your resume if you have anything mortgage backed (although I'm inclined to think distressed debt funds should be interested nowadays).
In addition, w/ hedge funds its more about fit than anything else.
Funds that are more private equity focused will tend to take more IBD guys since that's what they are comfortable with.
Conversely a traditional long/short eq shop w/ sell-side ex-eq analysts will tend to take more sell-side eq-analysts.
The the beauty of finance at the fundamental level is that all based on performance and meritocracy.
Look at LTCM, the prestigous fund all quant PhDs that blew up.
These guys at the time were considered the cream of the crop and they totally fucked up.
It doesn't matter where you start off as long as you are good and perform and have the drive.