Jump Trading relies heavily on entry level talent, which is why College Recruiting is one of the main sections on their site.

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Yesterday I was talking to a friend who is convinced that everyone in Chicago is a consultant. I know a lot of consultants here, but my take is a little different. I’m pretty sure that every guy that I’ve met here who is between the ages of 23 and 32 is a “trader.” They never tell you what they trade unless you ask—it almost seems like they’re being evasive. Maybe it’s all about creating a mystique about being a trader. Anyway, one of my “trader” friends happens to work at Jump Trading (he likes it), a high-frequency trading shop based here in Chicago. From what I can tell on their website, Jump Trading is less concerned with what they’re trading and more concerned with how they’re trading. They put a huge emphasis on technology, and they’re trying to take advantage of the fact that “the world financial markets are becoming faster, more complex, and more automated every day.”

Jump at the Opportunity

While Jump Trading’s website doesn’t go into too much detail about what exactly they do, you can find a little more about them in this Forbes article (even if it is nearly 4 years old). My key takeaway from the article is that Jump Trading is a “proprietary firm,” which means that they trade the company’s (or the founders’) money, not the money of clients. Most of what you’ll find about Jump Trading on their website is related to recruiting. They rely heavily on entry level talent, which is why College Recruiting is one of the main sections of the site. They do have a general Jobs page, but your best bet is to consider the two positions listed on their College Recruiting page—Algorithmic Trader and Software Engineer. Jump Trading only recruits at six campuses—Carnegie Mellon, Harvard, MIT, Stanford, Illinois, and Berkeley—so if you don’t attend one of those schools (where you should apply through Career Services), you’ll have to use their general résumé submission form. As you can tell by the schools that Jump Trading recruits from, they’re highly selective, although they don’t require prior knowledge of trading or finance to land a job with them. You just need to be really smart. Jump Trading does most of their campus recruiting in February, so now is probably the perfect time to apply for one of their jobs.

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