Meet a Macro Analyst

Meet a Macro Analyst

Alma Mater: Johns Hopkins University

Hometown: Logan, UT

Tell us about your background prior to joining SIG?

Prior to SIG, I completed my Master’s degree in International Finance and Economics at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). While in graduate school, and for a short time thereafter, I worked at a small emerging markets long/short fund in Washington, D.C. I originally entered my Master’s program with the intent of working in diplomacy and international relations with a focus on commodity-based economies. However, my graduate coursework piqued an interest in working in finance and that led me to seek out opportunities where I could use my understanding of commodity economies and emerging markets in investing.

How did you find out about SIG and what made you decide to join our team?

I found out about SIG through a networking call with SIG’s Head of Macro Research, who had also studied at SAIS. The macro role at SIG appealed to me because it was an opportunity to combine my interests in geopolitics, economics, and financial analysis in an extremely fast-paced environment. I was excited by the opportunity to get a crash course in investment research and have a front row seat to understanding how capital markets function on a minute-to-minute basis.

How does your role in macro research differ from others within buy side research?

In macro, we sit at the intersection of geopolitics, macroeconomics, and financial markets. I cover commodities and commodity-focused equities (E&P’s, miners, agricultural firms, etc.), so I have a dual-coverage area when it comes to working with traders. My research supports our trading of underlying commodities as news breaks that relates to economic and geopolitical factors. I also do fundamental research to analyze equities with exposure to those commodities to build investment theses that our traders can use. This portion of the role is very similar to what other SIG Buy Side Researchers do in that it involves covering earnings releases, corporate actions, and other breaking news in those names. Where it differs is that my research has a slightly greater emphasis on the geopolitical/macroeconomic factors that impact stock moves, with slightly less focus on individual equities.

What has been your most memorable experience on the desk thus far?

During the time I’ve worked on the desk, we’ve seen historic events unfold in the oil markets. Events like these are really the epitome of what makes the macro role exciting. I’ve always had an interest in the geopolitics of oil, so being able to use my knowledge of their impact on financial markets to express investment opinions on a wide variety of securities like commodity futures, single equities, and ETFs to the traders I’m working with has been amazing.

We talk a lot about teamwork and collaboration at SIG. Where do you see this demonstrated in your current role?

Communication is critical. We’re in constant contact with the other research analysts covering the individual equities that make up the broader baskets of stocks that we’re trading on our desk. We’re talking to traders nonstop since they can provide us with valuable color on how other market participants are preparing for or reacting to events and that helps us to refine our opinions. Throughout the day, we’re in touch with our research colleagues in Dublin and Sydney as well to get their opinions on what they’re seeing in their stocks since there is significant sector overlap. The fluidity of our communication supports my ability to anticipate possible future events and translate opinions into actionable ideas on the index desk.