Fixed-income traders are investment/finance experts who focus on the purchase and sale of financial instruments in the realm of fixed income. They typically make purchases and sales for clients, including both individuals and institutions, and must stay up-to-date with all changes and trends in the market to make the best decisions to return more income to clients.
These traders work with financial instruments including bonds, loans, and derivatives, as well as institutional and credit-based products. Their goal is to produce the highest returns on their clients' money using investments which offer fixed, or guaranteed, rates of return. They may work with investors to understand their needs and goals and determine the best fixed-rate resources to meet those needs and expectations, which requires them to constantly stay on top of the market and aware of changes and new opportunities.
Fixed-income traders must have thorough knowledge of investment tools, the ability to analyze options, and a complete understanding of the investment market and its behavior. They work primarily in the offices of investment firms, even after investment markets have closed for the day, and strong communication skills are also important to work well with clients and understand their needs, especially in meetings which may take place in the office, at the client's location, over the phone, or elsewhere.
A bachelor’s degree in finance, business, accounting, or a related field is generally required for this position, and further study related to the products and markets with which they work is also necessary. As such, ongoing education may be required to stay up-to-date with changes in laws and regulations, and some employers may also require a master's degree.
Trader, Fixed Income Tasks
- Monitor market news and conditions to support advisors and their clients.
- Seek business opportunities with potential fixed income clients.
- Stay current with security industry rules and regulations, policies and procedures regarding the securities industry.
- Buy and sell (trade) securities on behalf of clients on fixed incomes.
- Understand various securities instruments including derivatives, hedge funds and shorting.