Courting commodities risk specialists

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Commodities are hot, and risk is an increasingly pressing issue.

Little surprise, therefore, that people combining the two disciplines are popular.

"A lack of availability means there's a premium on offer to commodities risk specialists," says Jakob Bloch, managing director of UK-based search firm Commodity Appointments. "We're seeing a big hiring push in London, Geneva and the Far East."

Barclays Capital, UBS, Citigroup and Credit Suisse are all expected to expand their commodities businesses next year, while JPMorgan has hired 50 commodities professionals in the past six months and recently restructured its business to capitalise on opportunities in the area.

Bloch says London-based professionals with three years' experience of commodities risk can command salaries in the region of 60k, plus bonuses anywhere up to 100%.

Gail Connolly, managing consultant at recruiters PSD Group, confirms commodities risk jobs are a "growth area".

"The biggest demand is for quants to develop pricing models for commodities," she adds.