Hedge Fund Managers


Employment Prospects


Today, there are approximately 16,000 hedge funds in the world. Preqin, a provider of data analytics for the alternative assets industry, reports that 65 percent of hedge fund managers are based in North America, 20.2 percent in Europe (especially the United Kingdom), and about 12 percent in the Asia-Pacific region (primarily in Australia, Hong Kong, and Singapore). According to Pension & Investments, the top hedge fund firms by AUM as of June 30, 2019, were:

  1. Bridgewater Associates
  2. Renaissance Technologies
  3. Man Group
  4. AQR Capital Management
  5. Two Sigma Investments/Advisers.

Starting Out

The career of hedge fund manager is not an entry-level position. You’ll need at least 10 years of investment experience and a proven performance record to work in this field.

Many hedge fund managers break into the industry as analysts. At some firms, they are hired after completing an internship, co-op, or summer job at a hedge fund or in financial research at an investment bank, in another alternative investment sector, or with a Fortune 500 corporation. Some employers require candidates for analyst positions to have two or three years of work experience in one of these settings.

According to a 2015 (the most year for which data is available) survey of hedge fund professionals by Benchmark Compensation, a financial data analytics firm, the most-effective job-search strategies in the hedge fund industry were utilizing recruiters and job boards (cited by 35 percent of respondents), followed by personal contacts (25 percent), and using one’s professional network (15 percent). Other job-search strategies include utilizing the resources of college career services offices, reaching out to contacts in one’s school alumni network, and checking out job sites such as https://www.caia.org/jobs, http://www.iaqf.org/job-board, and https://www.mta.org/development/career-development-center.

Advancement Prospects

Hedge fund managers who also own their firms sit at the top of the heap in the hedge fund world, so there are not a ton of advancement opportunities. Some hedge fund managers view generating higher returns for investors, creating larger hedge funds, and becoming well-respected in the hedge fund community as forms of advancement. A hedge fund manager who is not an owner can advance by choosing to launch his or her own hedge fund.  

Tips for Entry

Obtain extensive experience as a hedge fund analyst to start your path toward a career as a HF manager.

Visit https://www.mergersandinquisitions.com/how-to-get-a-job-at-a-hedge-fund to read How to Get a Job at a Hedge Fund: Hedge Fund Recruiting.

A strong background in math, economics, and business is helpful in this field; take classes in these areas.

Be willing to relocate to New York City and other employment hubs for hedge fund professionals. It may open more opportunities. 

Bloomberg Markets (https://www.bloomberg.com/markets) publishes an annual ranking of the world’s richest hedge funds. Use this list as a starting point during your job search.