How to become a trader - Education, Job training

Becoming a trader

If there's one job in finance that we've all dreamed about, it's the job of trading. From the multi-millionaire trader to the rogue trader that "blows up" banks, traders have been the subject of much fascination.

Indeed, many of you want to become traders. In this article, you will discover how to become a trader, whether you want to be a professional trader or become a home-based trader.


What does a trader's job role consist of?

Before reviewing the details of how to become a trader, let's briefly explain what a trader's job is.

There are two main categories of traders:

  • The trader who trades on behalf of third parties,
  • The trader who trades for his/her own account.

Traders who trade on behalf of third parties are typically salaried employees of a financial institution. They trade on behalf of their employer's clients. It's the clients who take on the risk.

Traders who trade for their own account are usually independent traders. Thus, they are the ones who take on risk. Trading for one's own account is possible for individuals and online traders who want to trade on their own.


Becoming a trader: education and training

The difference between being an employed trader at a financial institution and an online trader is an important thing to consider if you want to become a trader. Indeed, becoming an online trader or a professional trader will not require the same training.

Being a trader in a financial institution cannot be improvised; it is essential that one follow a lengthy curriculum in order to become a professional trader. One needs a full college - and even a doctorate - education from a university or a higher education institute. There aren't really any specialised schools, you really need to attend a business school or an engineering school.

Becoming an online trader, on the other hand, is accessible to all, thanks to online training.


How does one become a professional trader?

If you want to become a professional trader, a lengthy period of studies is required. Expect at least 5 years of studies after secondary school ("high school" in the USA).

The training offer is very good. The most recognised diplomas for those who want to secure a job as a professional trader are as follows: a Masters in Finance or a Master of Science in Finance. The following schools are recognised as offering the very best degrees (Top 10 starting with the best):

  1. Imperial College Business School’s MSc in Finance
  2. The London School of Economics’ MSc in Finance
  3. Cass Business School’s MSc in Trading and Mathematical Finance
  4. ESCP Europe Advanced Master in Finance
  5. HEC (French business school) Masters in International Finance
  6. Edhec (French business school) MSc in Finance
  7. Warwick Business School MSc in Finance
  8. Bocconi University’s Master of Science in Finance
  9. Essec (French business school) MSc in Finance
  10. Said Business School, Masters in Financial Economics

In addition to a degree and due to the international context and the nature of trading, getting a job as a professional trader also requires full fluency in English.


Becoming a trader without a diploma: Learn how to trade online

Of course, it's entirely possible to become a trader without a diploma and many are self-taught. Although institutions favour prestigious studies and diplomas, nothing prevents you from becoming an independent trader.

You can indeed follow a training session on the internet to become a trader through an online trading school or simply through your broker. Most brokers offer free training and a demo account to practice and to apply one's newfound knowledge without risk.

Learning online trading in a self-taught manner will not open the doors of the big investment banks, but it will allow you to trade online for your own account.


How does one become an independent trader?

If you are wondering how to become a home-based trader, it's very simple. Here are the 4 steps to become an online trader:

  1. Take a course that specialises in trading,
  2. Choose a reliable CBFSAI-regulated broker, such as AvaTrade,
  3. Choose a reliable and intuitive trading platform, for example MetaTrader 4,
  4. Put your training into practice on a demo account before trading with real money.

That's all there is to it! Now you know how to become a trader, whether it's as a salaried trader or to trade for your own account. Don't hesitate any longer, become a trader!