FFP #3: Exploring a unique FX world with awesome colleagues

Kristo's wish came true when he got a FFP position in the FX team. Read about his hectic summer, a sharper learning curve, awesome colleagues and ...

By Kristo Ruutu

Kristo, 26 year-old finance student from Helsinki, started his five months FFP internship at Markets in May 2020.

As my five months internship at Nordea is coming to an end, it is good to sum up my experiences from the Future Finance Professional (FFP) programme, and share highlights from my job at Markets in Helsinki.

For starters, I had read and heard about Markets’ customised FFP programme, and thought it sounded interesting. The two main reasons for applying for the FFP position in the first place, were the integrated possibilities of getting and taking responsibility, and to deepen my knowledge of the financial market. Moreover, Nordea Markets’ FFP programme is an internationally distinguished programme among many employers.

I’m grateful that my FX wish came true

During the recruitment process for the FFP internship, I emphasized my interest to work in a position relating to currencies (FX, foreign exchange) and sales. Eventually, and luckily, my wish came true – and I am very grateful to the person who hired me for this opportune position.

At the core of the work of the FX team is currencies as the name implies, and I would say that the title “currency dealer” is the best way of describing what I do in my work. After my first month here, which went really fast, I had to pass a currency exam in order to be approved to trade currencies independently. In the FX team, we work at the trading floor among other units and teams, and it is nice and educational to see how other teams operate. The teams are usually divided based on type of asset, but every team is a team player and each team pull together as one Nordea Markets.

In my FX team, we serve customers through different channels giving you the opportunity to get familiar with e.g. Spot, Forward contract, Swap and Option. It has been really interesting to learn different Option strategies and see how various market situations affect strategies.

My colleagues are awesome – competent and helpful

People here, and my colleagues especially, are awesome. I was warmly welcomed to the team, and there is always someone around I can ask for help. A big thanks to the team for that. A curious mind and willingness to learn new things play a significant role in this position – and in general in Markets, I think. As for myself, I have a habit of asking many questions, and even more so now, as you can rely on skilled people at Markets to give you competent answers and guidance.

Kristo discussing market movements with co-intern Jussi Virkajärvi in Markets Derivatives Coverage FI.

Oftentimes, the market can be rather boring during the summer period, but not this time. This summer there’s been a lot of action on the currency markets. The central banks have been more active than usual, many currencies have made big movements, and the safe haven of US dollar has been questioned. So, it has not been dull at all, but very interesting to monitor the markets, and at the same time try to understand how different factors affect exchange rates.

During my time here, it is become even more evident to me that the FX world is a quite unique world. It is affected by numerous different factors, and sometimes even theories are being challenged when sudden market movements happen.

A great place to work – highly recommendable

Conclusively, Nordea Markets is a great place to work. I recommend the FFP internship to everyone who are genuinely interested in the financial markets, and eager to learn all there is to learn about it. As a trainee, you are on a steep, yet steady learning curve. Your supervisor is always available and Nordea’s aim for a trainee is to learn as much as possible during the summer – and I sure have. Four months in to my internship, the aim is fulfilled already.

Looking back, it is easy to state that the learning curve has been sharper than expected – in a good way – and I am definitely looking forward to new challenges during my remaining time at Nordea Markets.

/Kristo

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