PEAK6 Investments Trader Reviews | Glassdoor

PEAK6 Investments Trader Reviews

Updated October 18, 2016
19 reviews

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3.2
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PEAK6 Investments Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Matthew Hulsizer
Matthew Hulsizer
12 Ratings

Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • The office space is impressive and can attract people to the company on its own (in 20 reviews)

  • Lots of good snacks, smart people (in 15 reviews)

Cons
  • work life balance is tough specially in technology area (in 5 reviews)

  • Upper management tends to be more ruthless than not (in 6 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (2)

    "Right place to be for me"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Derivatives Trader in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Derivatives Trader in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at PEAK6 Investments full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Approaching 10 year as a trader for Peak6. Obviously it's not smooth sailing all the time. Plenty of ups and downs along the way. If you are a hard worker and committed to being successful in this business then this is the place to be. You will have plenty of support from other traders to help you along the way. Technology and management changes over the past few years, has had a big impact on my impression for the future. .

    Cons

    Getting things done on the tech side can have its trouble spots. I think faster turnaround on projects is needed. Trader priority should come before anything else. Sometimes I feel tech is shorthanded. (problem being addressed more recently) Cost at times can be high, however you can take steps to manage cost.

    Advice to Management

    Improve turnaround time on tech projects. Tech projects that take couple of hours should not be in que for months or even years.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Mar 17, 2016 – President

    Thanks. It’s great to hear from someone who’s been with PEAK6 through these periods of growth. We do feel like we’ve made great strides in a number of areas. Also appreciate you sharing your feedback ... More


  2. Helpful (15)

    "Great place to learn and move on"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Trader
    Former Employee - Trader
    Doesn't Recommend

    Pros

    The training program was a highlight of my time at Peak6. It's a great firm to learn from and then take the skills elsewhere.

    Cons

    The negatives mentioned in these other reviews are all very real. There is a ton of micromanagement and very little input given to traders on changes at the firm level. Ostensibly innovation is encouraged but in truth new initiatives are rapidly shut down if they are not immediately profitable. Traders are consistently left in the dark on firm changes.

    Advice to Management

    Show some respect to your traders by giving them input on firm changes. I can tell you that morale on the desk is at an all time low.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Feb 13, 2017 – COO

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on PEAK6. As you note, we do invest heavily in our training program and believe that it provides a great foundation for our traders to grow and develop at PEAK ... More


  3. Helpful (2)

    "PEAK6"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Options Trader in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Options Trader in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at PEAK6 Investments (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    PEAK6 makes it a point to hire for culture, so I enjoy spending time with my peers. Trading is a tough business, but the firm is a great place to become a volatility trader. Trading is an entrepreneurial activity, so your success will ultimately be on you; however, the firm has the tools, capital, and resources to give you a great chance.

    Cons

    Slightly too focused on short term under performance at times.

    Advice to Management

    N/A

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Mar 17, 2016 – President

    Sounds like you’ve had a good experience at PEAK6 — glad to hear it. Opportunity is definitely available at PEAK6, but as you point out, it also means stepping up and taking those opportunities ... More


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  5. Helpful (6)

    "A great place to start but not the major league"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Great place to start out of college and learn how to trade. Accept this and you will be fine with the rest.

    Cons

    The pay is laughable, which ultimately is why top talent has left.

    When I first started, I was in love with this place. I felt passionate but as the years rolled on I observed the same things over and over. Traders moved in and out of strategies constantly against their will. How do you expect a trader to be profitable when you continuously do this? It's mentally draining. It leads to lack of self confidence and trust, which is exactly not what should be instilled in a trader.

    Advice to Management

    Cut the excessive overhead and pay your valuable employees the balance. Yes, the catered lunch is awful.

    Why do you not hire experience? Although there are some smart trainers at peak, there is better talent elsewhere and they may help enhance your strategy. Hiring Ivy League students is not analogous.

    Get more traders a Bloomberg terminal, there are far too few for a trading firm. It will pay for itself and even though it may seem like an expensive toy, it inspires people to be creative with the vast data to find on Bloomberg.

    Get your traders access to the market brokers. The dynamic created by your sales desk is strange and it bottlenecks interaction between your traders and real paper.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Mar 17, 2016 – President

    Thanks for sharing your feedback. I’m not sure if you communicated any of this feedback directly when you were working in Capital Management. We have tried to be thoughtful around the issues you ... More


  6. Helpful (1)

    "Peak 6 Trader"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    great opportunity to trade own book, grow more rapidly than any other firm
    fun, great coworkers and bosses
    enjoy coming to work everyday
    great financial upside
    fair

    Cons

    still somewhat unclear on what compensation is based on

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Mar 8, 2016 – Trading Business Manager

    Good feedback — thank you. I’m especially glad to hear you feel you have opportunities for growth, since that’s one area where we feel we are differentiated for traders. In terms of lack of ... More


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Trader review"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Positive Outlook

    Pros

    A lot of in-house knowledge of equity options. A decent set of trader teams that can each be profitable independently. Good opportunity set if you're able to get on the right track. Awesome office space. Management has made good progress focusing on culture and transparency.

    Cons

    Trader comp is below industry averages, very significantly below any top tier trading firm. In-house tech slightly behind a lot of off-the-shelf products. Upper management tends to be more ruthless than not.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Mar 8, 2016 – Trading Business Manager

    Thanks — good feedback on your experiences as a trader. Glad to hear, too, that you feel there’s opportunity for you. Appreciate that you see the focus on culture and transparent communication ... More


  8. "Trader"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Current Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

    I have been working at PEAK6 Investments full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Most of management is very receptive to new ideas from anyone (recent hires included). Everyone is treated very fairly and, for the most part, compensation is based on performance above all else. If you are driven you can be very successful here; it's a firm that in some ways is very entrepreneurial.

    Cons

    There can be very little transparency from management about potential changes to your role or shifts in the direction of the company.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Feb 23, 2016 – President

    It’s good to hear that you feel PEAK6 has created an environment where you can contribute ideas and impact the business. That culture is what we strive to create for all employees. I also appreciate ... More


  9. Helpful (14)

    "Great place to learn, terrible place to stay"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Equity Derivatives Trader in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Equity Derivatives Trader in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments (More than a year)

    Pros

    Great benefits and training programs. Provide young inexperienced traders looking to get into the business an environment where they can learn actionable trading skills. Large depth of trading knowledge to tap into.

    Cons

    PEAK6 do not really believe in their people. The flip side to them teaching and providing you the means to trade is that they treat you like a trade. As an employee, especially as a trader, you are seen as a poker hand. You are merely a 'probability' (in quotations because this is an arbitrary assessment) weighted bet that they are taking on you. They are quick to cut ties.

    Advice to Management

    Treat people like people. Foster a more secure environment for young traders. Upper management needs to communicate better with individuals. Let your mentors actually be mentors and not pawns.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Jan 26, 2016 – President

    Thank you for your feedback. We apologize that you had a negative experience at PEAK6. We are very focused on creating a culture where every employee is able to develop their talents and given ... More


  10. Helpful (1)

    "It's a place to work but not excel"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Junior Trader in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Junior Trader in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Diverse investment in different business

    Cons

    Very conservative in risk taking

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 1, 2014 – President

    Thanks for your feedback. We appreciate you acknowledging the diversity of our businesses. This has been a focus for us and we are growing here. Risk management is also something we focus on at ... More


  11. Helpful (11)

    "Just watch how quickly a fabulous company review shows up after a truthful review is posted."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Former Employee - Trader in Chicago, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at PEAK6 Investments full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Some great parties that have been continuously declining in quality and attendance. Candy drawer.

    Cons

    A crowded room of yes men who know enough to never question a ridiculous initiative or new business venture. The owners have their trusted lieutenants along with a bloated layer of junior partners and middle managers unsure of where they will be or what they will be doing in 3 years. Just very little vision as far as a plan of attack. Even the gentlemen responding to these posts was the owner's roommate in college and now the President of the company. Its a great job if you can get it.

    Advice to Management

    At this point there is not much that can be recommended. They have pretty much made their bed which is to say they have a lot of options traders who at best are probably struggling to make money against the likes of Citadel, Goldman, and Wolverine trading in this highly automated and algorithmic environment. Don't get me wrong they have some pretty cutting edge stuff but so does everyone else.

    PEAK6 Investments Response

    Aug 1, 2014 – President

    Thanks for your feedback. I'm sorry it wasn't your experience, but we do encourage an open, transparent culture where people debate ideas. It sounds like your experience wasn't aligned with ... More