Monthly Archives: October 2007

Interview Question: Assessing Your Own Odds

Sample Question #225 (strange question) So, about 35 people have applied to this position [for which you are interviewing]. What’s the probability that you will get the offer? (Comment: is this a quantitative question? Does it matter?)

Posted in Sample Qs | 3 Comments

Which Is More Important: Math or Stats?

A lot of folks aspiring to be quants have the incorrect impression that real quants work with mathematical models all the time. They probably got this impression from reading some books purporting to tell them what quants do, and they … Continue reading

Posted in Advice and Tips | 2 Comments

Interview Question: My Name Is Bond

Sample Question #224 (finance – bond pricing) Explain the difference between a bond’s yield and its rate of return. How do you calculate them? (Comment: the funny thing about bond pricing is that, as long as you understand the concept … Continue reading

Posted in Sample Qs | 7 Comments

Reality Check: Are You Sure You Want to Be a Quant?

The last two days I took a sick leave. While resting at home, I watched a 3-disc DVD program called Navy Seals: BUDS Class 234, a six-part mini-series about young men training to become members of the elite U.S. Navy … Continue reading

Posted in Advice and Tips | 10 Comments

Interview Question: From Prior to Posterior

Sample Question #223 (statistics – Bayesian inference) Suppose that x is normally distributed with mean μ and variance 4. Assume that the prior distribution of μ is also normal with mean 0 and variance 25. What is the posterior distribution … Continue reading

Posted in Sample Qs | 1 Comment

Common Mistake: Chatterbox

Common Mistake #8: talk too much at an interview While most quant candidates tend to be the quiet type, it’s not uncommon at all to find some who, for one reason or another, tend to talk a lot during an … Continue reading

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Interview Question: Random Certainty

Sample Question #222 (mathematics – stochastics) How would you prove that the probability of a random walk hitting any arbitrary number is 1? (Hint: when you’re asked "how would you prove…", you’re expected to give a sketch of a proof, … Continue reading

Posted in Sample Qs | 1 Comment