The Python Quants: First University Certificate in Python for Algorithmic Trading

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Dr. Yves Hilpisch, Managing Partner, The Python QuantsDr. Yves Hilpisch, Managing Partner
Python programming has become a key skill in the financial industry. In areas such as financial data science, computational finance or algorithmic trading, Python has established itself as the primary technological platform. At the same time, the level of Python sophistication the industry is expecting from its employees and applicants is increasing steadily. The Python Quants Group is one of the leading providers of Python for Finance training programs.

Among others, The Python Quants have tailored a comprehensive online training program leading to the first University Certificate in Python for Algorithmic Trading. Be it an ambitious student with intrigue for algorithmic trading, or a major financial institution, The Python Quants, through this systematic training program, is equipping delegates with requisite skills and tools to formulate, backtest and deploy algorithmic trading strategies based on Python.

The topics covered in the training programs offered by The Python Quants are generally not found in the typical curriculum of financial engineering or quantitative finance Master programs. Dr. Yves Hilpisch, the firm’s founder and managing partner, explains, “There are courses out there that show students how to apply machine learning for the formulation and backtesting of algorithmic trading strategies. However, none of them explains the difficulties or the skills required in deploying such algorithmic trading strategies in the real world.
Besides providing an introductory course that teaches Python and financial concepts from scratch, we train our delegates and clients on how best to deploy algorithmic trading strategies in automated fashion in the cloud, with, among others, real-time risk management and monitoring,” explains Hilpisch, an author of three books on the topic, with “Python for Finance” (2nd ed., O’Reilly) being the standard reference in the field.

The organization’s “Python for Algorithmic Trading University Certificate” consists of 200 hours of instruction, 1,200 pages of documentation and 1,000s of lines of Python code. In addition to offering both online and offline Python training, Hilpisch and his team also organize bespoke training events for financial institutions, hedge funds, banks, and asset management companies. “Most of the training is online since we have students and delegates from about 65 different countries in general. Most recently, we noticed that it’s not just financial firms and students who want to deepen their algorithmic trading knowledge, but even professors of finance who want to get more involved in this popular topic,” says Hilpisch.

While the Quant Platform is the most popular choice, especially for users in the financial sector who don’t have access to a full-fledged, interactive, financial analytics environment, the team at The Python Quants is currently developing The AI Machine—a new platform which leverages artificial intelligence to formulate and deploy algorithmic trading strategies in a standardized manner. Hilpisch explains that it’s relatively easy to write Python code for an algorithmic trading strategy, but the same can’t be said about the deployment of such a strategy. “There are a few platforms out there that allow the formulation and backtesting of algorithmic trading strategies by the use of Python code. However, they usually stop exactly there. With The AI Machine, it is a single click on the ‘GO LIVE’ button and the strategy is deployed in real-time—without any changes to the strategy code itself,” adds Hilpisch.

In 2019, The Python Quants will be introducing a new university certificate titled “Python for Computational Finance,” which will focus more on original quantitative finance topics, such as option pricing, Monte Carlo simulation, and hedging. As financial institutions begin to perceive Python-based analytics as a prerequisite skill, the organization will continue to provide an “efficient and structured way of mastering all the tools and skills required in Python for Financial Data Science, Algorithmic Trading, and Computational Finance.”