Rates trading is a dangerous business to work in and an even more perilous business to find a new job in. With rates businesses at the forefront of capital-optimizing job cuts, who knows whether the bank you're joining will suddenly decide to decimate its macro business? Who knows whether you'll be replaced by a new electronic trading system?
We can't remove all the risk from your quest for a new rates trading job. But we can point you towards the charts below, helpfully produced by capital markets intelligence provider Tricumen.
Containing proprietary information from Tricumen's analysis based upon banks' released figures and its 'external research network', each chart below concerns rates businesses only. The charts don't show how well each bank is doing in rates trading in absolute terms, but they do show how well each bank is performing across various metrics compared to the market average (shown by the zero line in the charts).
This is what you need to know.
1. Try SocGen for flow rates, Morgan Stanley for structured rates and Deutsche for emerging market rates (this chart suggests these banks are growing relative to the market in these areas)
2. Credit Suisse's US rates business is seriously inefficient compared to peers (and looks at grave risk of layoffs)
3. In 2014, UBS's US rates professionals were grossly overpaid compared to the income they generated. US rates professionals at Barclays and Citi were seriously underpaid
4. In America, Barclays' structured rates professionals are very productive. In Europe, BAML's are. Morgan Stanley's structured rates professionals are unusually productive on both continents
5. Citi's rates traders are the most capable of making money per 'unit' of risk. RBS's rates traders are the least capable
6. Rates traders at UBS, BAML and Barclays are best at making money with restricted capital. Morgan Stanley's are the worst