Business Today

Wanted: Fund managers and analysts

New jobs emerge as private players step in to manage pension funds.

twitter-logoManu Kaushik | Print Edition: September 7, 2008

Here’s an exciting opportunity up for grabs in the financial services sector. The recent decision of the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) to open fund management to three private sector fund managers—HSBC AMC (Asset Management Company), ICICI Prudential and Reliance Capital—has promised to deliver more jobs for fund managers and research analysts.

Kotak’s Kirkire: Fund managers in demand
Kotak’s Kirkire: Fund managers in demand
Typically, pension funds invest long-term contractual savings in various financial instruments. Currently, investment avenues for pension funds are restricted to central and state government securities, special deposit schemes, bonds of public sector undertakings and public sector financial institutions, and certificates of deposit with banks. Says Sandesh Kirkire, CEO, Kotak Mahindra MF: “As directed by EPFO, fund managers will not be able to invest in stocks.

However, there is a proposal to allow fund managers to invest in equity instruments as an option, thus, reducing the burden on the exchequer.The number of equity and debt researchers required by fund houses will largely depend on the government guidelines on the investment patterns.”

Until now, EPFs have been solely managed by the state-run State Bank of India, but the government now wants to foster competition and ensure higher returns for its 43 million subscribers. “Initially, the EPFO will ask the fund managers to manage the incremental deposits only,” says Kirkire.

Experts think that the plan to have multiple fund managers for the scheme will help generate higher returns and bring about greater professionalism. Says Shiv Aggarwal, CEO, ABC Consultants: “This is a very specialised domain and only the best and the brightest operate here. However, we might see a few openings at the equity analyst and fund manager levels.”

Fact box

Who’s hiring: Reliance Capital, ICICI Prudential, HSBC and SBI

Who’re they hiring: Chartered Accountants (CAs), Chartered Financial Analysts (CFAs), and MBAs, preferably in Finance

At what levels: Junior Research Analyst, Research Analyst (over three years of work experience), Senior Research Analyst (5-6 years of work experience), Fund Managers (over 10 years work experience), and Chief Investment Officer (15 or more years of work experience)

At what salaries: Junior Research Analysts get Rs 6-10 lakh per annum, Research Analysts get around Rs 12-15 lakh p.a. Senior Research Analysts command around Rs 25-30 lakh p.a. Salaries for Fund Managers vary between Rs 30 and Rs 40 lakh-plus incentives and the compensation package for Chief Investment Officer starts from Rs 60 lakh p.a. and can go up to Rs 1 crore p.a, excluding perks and benefits

What are the numbers like: It is expected that once the private players kick off their operations from September, the total headcount of analysts at all levels will be around 500. Depending on the government’s policies and growth rate of the industry, the demand for professionals is likely to rise at around 25-30 per cent annually

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