How much engineers and researchers are getting paid at AQR, Bridgewater, Citadel, D.E. Shaw, Point72, and Two Sigma

Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for IRC; Roy Rochlin/Getty Images; Heidi Gutman/CNBC/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images;Firms like AQR, Bridgewater, Citadel, D.E. Shaw, Point72, and Two Sigma vigorously compete for the most promising young financial minds — and they pay hefty sums to lure in top candidates.

For many Wall Street aspirants, a career at a top hedge fund is the holy grail. For those who succeed, compensation has the potential to eclipse nearly any other profession in the country — let alone finance.

The hedge fund industry has transformed over the past 15 years. Whereas fundamental investment strategies once ruled the day, increasingly the flow of talent and capital is shifting toward firms with sophisticated quantitative strategies and data-mining operations.

Today, most of the largest and most successful funds have significant quant operations, if not a complete emphasis on quantitative investing. Firms like AQR, Bridgewater, Citadel, D.E. Shaw, Point72, and Two Sigma vigorously compete for the most promising young financial minds — and they pay hefty sums to lure in top candidates.


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Bonuses play an outsized role in overall comp at most funds, especially in investment roles, but base salaries are still substantial and figure prominently especially at the more junior levels, where employees typically have a less direct impact on overall returns.

Some of the brightest minds in systematic trading and quantitative research were born and educated outside the US, and some funds stock their US rosters with foreign labour. When US companies file paperwork for visas on behalf of current or prospective foreign workers, they’re required to say how much base compensation the workers are offered. And every year,the Office of Foreign Labour Certification discloses this salary data in an enormous dataset.

Business Insider analysed the agency’s disclosure data from the past three years for permanent and temporary foreign workers to shed light on what these hedge funds paid for talent.

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