- Please tell a little bit about yourself and your current occupation
I am a 2015 alumnus from Economics with Finance at WIUT. After graduating from WIUT, I was fortunate to be accepted to Master in Finance program at IE Business School, which I successfully finished last summer. Since then, I have been working at Morgan Stanley as a Credit Research Analyst in the Risk Management department. We conduct credit analysis of Morgan Stanley’s bank clients. I am responsible for the South European portfolio, which I specifically cover over 40 banks in Italy, Spain, Portugal and Greece (all the bad guys J ). Basically, we serve as an internal rating agency for Morgan Stanley (like in-house S&P or Moody’s).
- Could you describe one of your typical workdays?
My typical day starts with a big cup of green tea and checking out the latest news in the market, especially in the banking space. If there is something major happening, I directly communicate my managers in London and take necessary actions if needed (rating change, trading limits change etc). For the largest part of my day I am engaged in actual quantitative and qualitative analysis of the banks in my portfolio. On the basis of my findings, I write research reports and propose a credit rating to our counterparties, which I later present and defend at meetings with senior management.
- What skills are required in your position on a day-to-day basis?
My job is very analytical in nature, thus analytical skills are in priority. Also, attention to detail as well as ability to see a big picture. You also need to have good communication skills in order to effectively liaise with traders, investor relations people and senior management.
- How did you get your job? Can you tell the recruitment process
Through networking (i.e. tanish-bilish even in Europe J). Actually, I connected with one person in Linkedin (btw he is also Uzbek), who was at that time working at Morgan Stanley, to ask pieces of general advice on my career. That’s how we got connected and eventually he referred me to Morgan Stanley for my current position. Recruitment process is pretty straight-forward: you apply online (CV and cover letter needed) after which you need complete an online numerical test. If you are successful in the test and pass first CV screening, you receive a call from HR to have a first round of interviews. First 1-2 rounds are done through phone, after which you are invited to an Assessment Centre (so-called Super day), where you pass rigorous rounds of interviews (typically at least 4-5 interview with at least 10 people), case study and group discussions. The whole process takes around 3-4 weeks.
- If you could start all over again, would you change your career path in any way? Why?
It’s very difficult to say at this point, since I’ve only been working 9-10 months in my current position. I want to try different things to know what is the right place for me. But, if I would ever mind changing my career, I would definitely do PhD and go for an academic career (I love research and teaching).
- What educational preparation would you recommend for someone who wants to advance in financial field?
Economics in Finance at WIUT of course J Aside from university classes, I would definitely recommend reading and following financial news on a regular basis, which are themselves very good source of learning (e.g. The Economist, Bloomberg or FT). Also, there are plenty of financial designations that you can pursue during university years (e.g. CFA, ACCA), which will be a very good advance for a career in finance. Also, there are plenty of must-reads: “The Intelligent Investor” by Benjamin Graham, “Black Swan” by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, “When Genius Failed” by Roger Lowenstein and books of Michael Lewis.
- Considering all the people you've met in your field, what personal attributes are essential for success?
Intellectual curiosity (wishing to develop in every position taken on), drive and passion to succeed, ability to communicate and listen effectively, and also ability to take calculated risks. It may sound a bit unusual, but also personal ethics.
- What are your favourite book / magazine?
Surely, Harry Potter / The Economist
- What would you say to anyone thinking about joining the course at Westminster International University in Tashkent?
Education is not about filling a glass of water but about initiating a fire. Studying in WIUT has been the best fire I have ignited in my academic life.
- Your advice for current students in one sentence
Stay focused and aim high!