Career Advice in Finance

 

Jim Baldyga

Could you describe your current job?

"I work for Penwood Realty Advisers. We are a real estate investment management company and we manage several real estate investment funds for public pension plans. My job is an Investment Analyst. I analyze potential new acquisitions for inclusion in the funds. I work on an industrial value-add fund, which means we buy either land or existing industrial buildings (warehouses/manufacturing facilities) with the plan of developing or redeveloping the sites and then selling to users or other investors."

Do you have any advice for current economic students?

"Typically people in my line of work come from a finance or MBA program and it's near impossible to get into an investment position without a solid finance background. If econ grads want to get into the investment field, they'll need to find a way to augment their econ background with some sort of finance training; a double major, etc. I did this through the CFA program which is a self-directed professional designation program. I've found that having an econ background gives me an enhanced ability to value potential investments because I can put them in the context of the broader economy and I have a better idea of how the macro setting will affect my valuation assumptions. Long story short: having a strong econ background to go along with finance training can be a competitive advantage in the investment field in my opinion."