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A Big, Global Program Trader

Traders Magazine, February 2004

Staff Reports

For Barclay's Mike Sobel, mastering a difficult foreign language, persistence and luck finally paid off. Today, working out of San Francisco, he is running Barclay Global Investor's (BGI) equity trading operations. This includes all BGI's stock and listed derivative trading that originates in the United States, and also covers all international index and active portfolios managed on behalf of American clients. But it wasn't a straight road to success for Sobel. He was attending the State University of New York (Binghamton) in the late 1980s, with the hope of going into trading, when he made an important decision. "My studies and continued interest in Japan led me to spend a semester overseas at Kansai Gaidai in Osaka, Japan -focusing on Japanese language and business skills," said Sobel, who lived with a Japanese family.

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