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Career case studies: Risk management analyst

Gu Ying

Ying Gu graduated in 2007 with a Bachelor of Economics from the Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade. She then completed a Masters in Statistics at Columbia University, New York, in December 2008. She joined the Citi Global Risk Analyst Program in 2009, and is currently based in Hong Kong.

What made you move into risk?

It was the middle of the global financial crisis when I graduated, so there was plenty of competition for jobs. However I was determined to find a role that would set me apart from other graduates then (December 2008) and in the future.

Fortunately, Citi’s programme meets my requirements as it rotates graduate analysts around different departments, which means we have a comprehensive knowledge of the structure of the company, and its risk management systems, meanwhile acquiring a variety of skill-sets.

What does your job involve?

On a day-to-day basis, my role is very hectic and challenging. It involves identifying, monitoring, managing market risks and liaising with traders, primarily, in the equity and equity derivatives markets. This involves aggregating the market factor sensitivities based on each portfolio and stress testing trading positions. There is also regular and ad hoc analysis of risk management and trading data such as economic indicators analysis and risk return matrix.

What makes you good at your job?

My good numeracy and quantitative skills help. For instance, in the daily trading risk monitoring, I can instantly feel if one risk number is right or wrong, and whether there is any need to drill down further.

Problem solving is a critical ability for risk analysts and this is a personal strength. I enjoy connecting the numbers with the trading strategies and identifying any potential risks early.

Why would you recommend a career in risk?

In a risk role you can work in a specialised skill-set or area, or if you choose, you can have broad exposure across a business or different functions. You don’t have to operate in a silo if you choose a career in risk.

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