Achieving And Growing: From A CFA CharterHolder To An Algorithmic Trader

3 min read

People are often held back in their career and professional growth sometimes simply because of some narrow perceptions. This prevents them from going after what they like to do.

There are many remarkable stories that showcase how someone from an altogether different background, but having an interest in something often achieves it. And it is noteworthy if he is a CFA holder and still follows his desire to learn algorithmic trading, especially to grow his skills and to cater to his wish to be a part of it.

Tod Schneider

The person that I’m referring to is none other than Tod Schneider.

A CFA Charterholder ie. a Chartered Financial Analyst® designation holder (CFA® charter), Tod is considered to be a part of the reputed profession of Global Investment Management.

A master of investment analysis possessing decision-making skills with relevant industry experience, Tod also established his very own firmSchneider Consulting LLC’ in Columbus, Ohio, USA. Presently he is a Senior Lecturer at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business, Ohio, USA.

Here’s a glimpse of his journey into the world of Algorithmic and Quantitative Trading - a journey that inspires you to keep learning, keep growing and keep going after what you want to do in life.

Our Conversation With Tod Schneider

Hi Tod! Tell us about yourself

Hi, I’m Tod Schneider. I’ve invested and been passionate about investing my whole life. My father is a veterinarian [retired] but was immersed in studying and investing in markets. Following his lead, I have been sharing my passion for investing since 1994.

When did you feel the need to learn about Algorithmic Trading?

I read about quant and algorithmic trading (Thorp, Simons, Woodriff) but wanted to find out for myself - by doing.

What challenges were you facing before EPAT? What motivated you to solve them?

As a discretionary investor with a long-time horizon, I wondered how the quant domain would add value to my process. Additionally, I wanted to increase my EQ [emotional intelligence], to better understand the other side of my trades. The only way to solve those problems was by working hard and putting it into practice.

Could you share about the possible options that you considered to educate yourself about Algorithmic Trading?

I considered a couple of different programs (University / online offerings).

How is the knowledge gained here helping you?

I continue to experiment and have developed a new joy in learning Python. Programming stretches your brain in ways that are difficult to articulate, but if I had to put it succinctly, programming improves your problem-solving ability.

You own a consulting firm and you’re a Senior Lecturer at the Fisher College of Business, The Ohio State University. How is the EPAT certification contributing to your present job roles?

As a teacher, I feel a sense of duty to survey the business landscape and prepare my students for a career opportunity. EPAT assisted me in providing a foundation in quant and Python/Pandas and context.

Tell us about your experience with EPAT!

It was great. Pre-work and the first few lectures were straightforward given my finance/accounting background. I was comfortable and confident in Excel lectures but was drinking from a fire hose when it came to the Python lectures. I worked hard and did my best-given work and family commitments (final exam took me 10+ hours). The time difference was difficult at times but I was so excited to learn that some nights I couldn’t/didn’t sleep (until I made progress or figured it out).

What would you say to those facing similar challenges in Algorithmic trading?

I read a great book called ‘How Do You Know’ and it elicited an uneasiness about all that I “know”. If you are curious as to how quant works and what the other side of the trade is thinking you have to find out for yourself.

Any suggestion for the EPAT aspirants out there?

As my infant daughter taught me: Be Inexorable.

For someone with the basic knowledge of algorithmic trading and knowledge of statistics, Tod achieved the EPAT Certificate of Excellence that helped him on his quest to create trading algorithms, machine learning and apply the skills acquired during EPAT to his own trading.

With the right set of skills, guidance and support, one can be a part of the consistently growing domain of Algorithmic Trading. Executive Programme in Algorithmic Trading (EPAT™) does just that. Its comprehensive curriculum covers training modules like Statistics & Econometrics, Financial Computing & Technology, and Algorithmic & Quantitative Trading and equips you to be a successful trader. Learn more about it here.

Disclaimer: In order to assist individuals who are considering pursuing a career in algorithmic and quantitative trading, this case study has been collated based on the personal experiences of a student or alumni from QuantInsti’s EPAT™ programme. Case studies are for illustrative purposes only and are not meant to be used for investment purposes. The results achieved post completion of the EPAT™ programme may not be uniform for all individuals.

Connect with Alumnus