Company of the Week: SEB – A career in Equity Research
My name is Anssi, I’m 31 years old and I’m working at SEB’s Markets business unit in the Helsinki office. This is my short story about my work.
I somehow found my route all the way from Ivalo (a place roughly 1,100km north from Helsinki) to work for a traditional Swedish bank which history has been closely tied to the development of Swedish industrialisation – and still is. While I was studying Finance at the University of Oulu, I managed to squeeze myself in to the Equity Research department in Helsinki as a Summer Intern back in 2011. After that I applied for, and got accepted to the SEB International Trainee program (which is by the way the crown jewel of all trainee programs for graduates) and now I’m here. I work as an Equity Analyst in SEB Markets responsible for the analysis of Finnish stock exchange listed universe in construction, building materials and service sectors, among other things… And there are a lot of other things.
When I say Equity Analyst you think Excel. That is a very accurate association but the concept is so much more. Yes it is Excel, but also a great deal of meetings with clients, meetings with corporate C-level personnel (mostly CEOs and CFOs), creating new ideas and learning about things I thought I would never need to know. For example, the latest thing that I focused on was the HDPE (High Density Polyethylene) global market, usage and potential. If you are eager to learn new stuff, you are interested in what is happening around you and you like versatile and pretty dynamic work surroundings – this is the profession to pursue.
My daily routines start in the morning (not a big surprise). I arrive in the office sometime between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m. to screen the market for overnight events. The morning is often hectic preparing for the local and international morning meetings. Morning meetings are the venue where all the Equity Analysts present (read pitch) their best ideas or go through important inflection points – what has happened or will be happening in the markets in the near future. This could really be anything relevant: how will pricing actions in the US insulin markets affect Novo Nordisk’s margin outlook, or how will the Finnish government’s decision to free the regulation of retail store opening hours impact Kesko’s position in the market and thus growth outlook and margin mix?
After the morning meetings a normal day consists of calling customers (large institutional investors around the world), meeting clients and creating ideas and cases for the future to help our customers in their investment decisions. I’m also a sector specialist in the bank which means meetings and updates for different groups inside the bank. One of the best parts of the job is that you get to meet a huge number of people around the world that are vastly smarter than yourself and know a lot about something you are interested in. This makes sure that your learning curve’s first, second and third derivative are all positive. Not such a bad place to be in…
I wish you all a great day!
Equity Research Analyst
Large Corporates & Financial Institutions