Hello. I realize that I have not been the most loyal blogger over the past half a year. Now, I am on a mission to correct that. Surely I can dedicate an occasional half hour a week to post something interesting here, considering that apparently people read this blog! Surprise!
To start things off, I want to post a comment left on this blog. I hope the author, Joey, does not mind. I think it explains the situation clearly. I do not agree with Joey completely, but it still remains a great insight into the industry. Here goes and please comment!
Hi! It's great that you made a blog for actuaries! I hope your blog gains more attention and gets some traffic from people on the Actuarial Outpost, and from those in finance who are curious about the actuarial profession or vice versa.
Ok I just wanted to give my 2 cents. I was in the same boat as you graduating from college. I majored in actuarial and finance. This is what I have to say. If I could do it all over again, I would not become an actuary. Being out of college and in the corporate world for 5 years, I realize, I think I made a mistake. Nothing against actuaries. It's just that, I decided not to work, and that honestly I just want to get wealthy. Becoming an actuary is not the best way to this goal. But if you want the best bang for your buck, you are going down the right path. If I could do it over again, I would have gone straight to wallstreet, into Ibanking, gotten my cfa, and get the big bonuses. After 5 years out of college, I kinda regret going down the actuarial path. The advantages were the high starting salary, the excellent, almost rediculous quantitative skills you acquire, and stabilty of the actuarial field/demand. Disadvantages: oh boy..there are a lot...you know in the last 4 years I have been pissed off and frustrated because I would be giving up my twenties, my precious youth to study for these focking exams..I live in Chicago..what a great city it is..I look around me. What are people my age doing? Partying, living it up, and of course all while trying to get themselves established..either taking their exams, getting thier JD, MD, ASOA/ACAS, CFA, MBA, etc...studying for exams in these years is NOT the way to live your life. It's sad because I saw a colleague from college, and she was studying for her course 5 at starbucks, like every Friday night...and I'm thinking..God, how sad is that?!!! And another thing is, right now, between SOA and CFA, I would have to say CFA is the much better bank for your buck. You get your CFA (3 years) and your salary pretty much doubles..60-80K maybe more if you have experience in the field. Could you double your salary in 3 years as an actuary? Possibly, but it's gonna be real hard..and you top out at around 100-200K. On the other hand..let's say you're a new CFA, you have 2 years Ibanking experience, and you're 28...by now you should be making 6 figures hopefully..versus if you were an actuary you might have 6-8 exams passed by now or fellowship. But here's the big difference, you're working as an analyst on wallstreet, and you're getting $250,000 - $1 million bonuses EVERY YEAR, ON TOP of your salary. How's that for salary comparison??? I'm 26 now, and the bottom line is, get out of actuarial and go into finance if you want to retire early. How many finance people do you know are loaded and are young, vs actuaries? Yes correct, finance. I know several people retired at 35 from working on wallstreet. I dont know any retired 35 yr old actuaries. Here's what I'm gonna do, and what I would suggest for you. Options trading. I trade options on the side, and my goal is to be a millionaire before I'm 30. I think trading options has the highest potential of getting butt rich in a short amount of time, next to working on wallstreet. But it requires much much education and experience. You have to trade on paper for at least 6 month first, or else I guarantee you will lose every dime the first 2 times you put big money into options. I'm down 60K in options trading as of today, but I'm not worried because I've acquired so much knowledge along the way that I'm confident that I'm close to attaining huge wealth. Being in the stock market day in and day out teaches you a TON about stocks, investing, trading, analysis, and wallstreet. I would recomment you take your first 4 actuarial exams, as this is your math/quant foundation. Then you can go into Wallstreet no problem. I am looking at CFA part 1 right now, I can answer half the questions correctly without even studying. Well, I am creating my own investing blogsite soon..it's gonna be called Followmymoney.com.
I will post my investment transactions in real time and I hopefully it will gain popularity. But I dont have time now..will be a huge project..have to make some money back in the market first...well, please comment back I'd love to hear responses to my post...I know I'm very opinionated..but trust me, my opinion is reality, and working in corporate America for the MAN is reality. Do you really want to see yourself working for 30 years as an actuary for the MAN, or would you rather work on wallstreet for 10 years and retire rich?
I hope you enjoyed this comment as much as I did. Thanks for your input, Joey!