Interviews for banking and finance positions are notoriously tough. Interviewees can expect all the questions from a normal job interview, along with the potential for extremely difficult questions, relating specifically to both financial services and to hypothetical scenarios.

Interview Question Examples

Two listed option contracts have identical features, except one has a longer maturity. Which option has a higher gamma? This question probably won't be asked of bank tellers or clerks, but those applying to work as derivatives traders, analysts or portfolio managers should be prepared to answer detailed questions about products traded in the markets they cover.

Is it possible to incur more risk through the use of a hedging strategy? How? This is another question commonly asked of those applying to work as traders, analysts or portfolio managers.

Two players, X and Y, each have a red marble and a blue marble. Each shows a single marble to the other. If both show red, player X wins $3. If both show blue, player X wins $1. If the colors are different, player Y wins $2. Is it better to be player X or player Y; does it matter? This question, and questions like it, involving games, is commonly asked to candidates for any banking or finance position.

If you could choose anyone, which three people would you choose to go on a cross-country car trip with? Why? This question is commonly asked by interviewers for many positions in banking and finance. Interviewers are interested in learning about candidates' world views and public figures they admire.

What is the most challenging situation you have ever been in? How did you manage it? The purpose of questions like this is quite straightforward. This question is commonly asked in many job interviews, including interviews for finance positions.

What aspects of your current job are you happy with? Be prepared for the interviewer to ask: "Why are you leaving?"

In which aspects of your current job do you see room for improvement? Pointing out areas that could truly use improvement in a positive and constructive manner is what interviewers are looking for.

Why are you considering leaving your current employer? This question is asked almost universally. Those applying for financial and banking positions face especially close scrutiny.

What are some of the pros and cons of raising capital through equity or debt offerings? Questions such as this are generally directed at candidates applying for analyst or trader positions, but almost every applicant to a bank or financial services firm could be asked a question like this. Even for those employed in technical fields, having a basic knowledge of a company's business improves chances for success when applying for jobs.

Other questions that are commonly asked include: How does the yield of a bond differ from its return? What are Beta and Alpha? Is this position your dream career? If, in 18 months, a competitor makes an offer with a higher salary as a portfolio manager, are you going to turn it down because this is your dream career? What is your worst trait? Why should I hire you? What differentiates you from other applicants?

  1. What questions are commonly asked during a portfolio management job interview?

    Learn what a portfolio manager does, how to prepare for interview questions for a job as a portfolio manager and common questions ... Read Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Personal Finance

    Illegal Interview Questions To Watch Out For

    If you were ever asked any of these questions during an interview you shouldn't have been, because they are illegal.
  2. Personal Finance

    7 Interview Don'ts

    Knowing what not to do will lead to a more successful interview and help you land that job.
  3. Personal Finance

    Tips To Beat Tough Interviews

    Learn how to answer some of the hardest interviewer questions and scenarios.
  4. Small Business

    4 Tough Interview Questions and How to Answer Them

    Job interviews can be hard enough. Add tough questions to the mix and it can seem impossible to shine. But there are ways to prepare for hard questions.
  5. Personal Finance

    4 Essential Questions to Ask at the End of a Job Interview

    Ask these questions if you want to leave a great final impression on hiring managers and establish yourself as a top candidate.
  6. Personal Finance

    Common Interview Questions for Financial Planners

    Understand the kinds of questions often asked in financial planning job interviews, and learn how to answer them in the most auspicious way possible.
  7. Personal Finance

    Common Interview Questions for Portfolio Managers

    Identify some of the common questions asked in portfolio manager job interviews, and learn how to formulate responses that set you apart from the competition.
  8. Personal Finance

    Common Interview Questions for Investment Analysts

    Identify common questions asked during investment analyst job interviewers, and prepare responses that set you apart from the competition.
  9. Personal Finance

    Common Interview Questions for Quantitative Analysts

    Identify the common questions asked in quantitative analyst interviews, and come up with winning responses to impress your interviewer.
  1. Conditional Probability

    Probability of an event or outcome based on the occurrence of ...
  2. Best Ask

    The lowest quoted offer price among all those offered by competing ...
  3. Bullet

    1) A one-time lump-sum repayment of an outstanding loan, typically ...
  4. Risk Management

    Risk management occurs anytime an investor or fund manager analyzes ...
  5. One-Sided Market

    When the market for a security only shows either one bid or one ...
  6. Covariance

    A measure of the degree to which returns on two risky assets ...
Trading Center