Embroiled in myriad of scandals, SAC Capital Advisors has (finally) decided to beef up its compliance department. The question remains whether you want to work there.
The Connecticut-based firm, which has seen several former lieutenants placed in cuffs for insider trading, and which recently agreed to a massive settlement for its own regulatory lapses, will increase its compliance staff by 25% this year, to around 45 employees. The hedge fund giant boasted only 10 compliance officers five years ago, according to the New York Times.
Whether the hires are planned simply to appease regulators matters not. They’re openings at a firm that essentially prints money. Candidates will likely fight for the opportunity to earn an interview.
Still, there are obvious drawbacks. Let’s start with the environment. One former employee recently compared working at the firm to “The Hunger Games,” where traders are pitted against each other, leaving only the strongest to survive. Founder Steven A. Cohen is known to personally apply much of the pressure.
Then there’s the job itself. The regulatory culture at the firm appears in disrepair, at least judging by recent headlines. Plus, SAC is as aggressive as they come, taking monster positions on a daily basis. The scandal-plagued firm invested $5 million or more in a single stock in a single quarter more than 5,300 times over the last six years. No other firm is close.
On the other hand, there’s the issue of money. SAC makes a lot of it, and recently made the decision to increase bonuses to retain employees amid scandals and customer fund withdrawals. The decision to apply for the job is yours.
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