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The Fitch Ratings Sovereigns Group provides credit research and opinion on 121 countries, and assigns ratings to the foreign and local currency debt of sovereign governments that account for virtually all sovereign international debt issuance.
The Sovereigns group offers forward-looking special reports and a range of web-based analytical tools, allowing investors to access comprehensive economic data and credit indicators and perform relative value analysis. We also host teleconferences, seminars and conferences in the world's major financial centres to keep investors ahead of the curve. The depth and accuracy of our coverage and timeliness of our research are key reasons why the capital markets put their trust in a Fitch sovereign rating.
As a Director or Associate Director in the Sovereigns team covering Emerging Europe you will act as the 'primary analyst' for maintaining a portfolio of around 5 sovereign ratings, developing deep analytical knowledge on these economies and working with significant independence, reporting to the regional team head.
The initial portfolio is expected to include countries in non-EU Europe. The exact portfolio will depend on the need to deploy the department's resources optimally to meet rating review schedules.
You will analyse all aspects of creditworthiness for the sovereigns in your portfolio. This includes reviewing and forecasting macroeconomic policies and trends, including GDP growth, inflation, the impact and consistency of monetary and fiscal policies and risks to macroeconomic stability. You will study trends in the sovereigns' public and external finances, conduct debt sustainability analyses and explore risks stemming from contingent liabilities. You will also study the structure of public finances and external debt and forecast external flows (BOP) and assets and liabilities (IIP, debt structure). Your analysis will also cover governance and domestic and geopolitical risks and risks to the sovereign stemming from the financial sector.
You will be expected to maintain good working relationships with relevant officials in central banks and government, as well as third party experts, so that you are able to regularly update Fitch's credit view and country economic databases and forecasts. You will organise and lead annual rating visits and teleconference calls as well as prepare recommendations, supporting research and presentations for the Sovereign Rating Committee.
You will typically also provide support to colleagues on the ratings of a further three to four sovereign governments as a 'secondary analyst'. At Director level, this may involve supervising less experienced staff.
You will also initiate and produce topical research on economic and credit developments on the countries in your portfolio. This will typically take the form of brief topical commentary such as FitchWire articles and more substantive special reports.
You will also represent and communicate Fitch's views externally, such as by speaking at conferences, holding meetings with investors and other market participants and interacting with print and broadcast media, particularly at Director level.
Once pandemic-related restrictions are lifted, there is considerable international travel associated with this position (while highly variable, 3 to 4 days out of the office once or twice a month would not be uncommon).
Qualifications and experience:
A strong understanding of macroeconomics and a keen interest in and awareness of international and political affairs, underpinned by at least a first degree in economics or a very closely-related discipline. A master's degree in economics would be an advantage.
Several years' experience of country/sovereign risk analysis and/or applied economics gained from within a top institution such as a finance ministry, central bank, private research house or financial institution.
In addition to fluent spoken and written English, working level competence in other languages would be advantageous though is not essential.
Additionally, you must be able to demonstrate the following attributes:
Analytical and numerical skills - You must be able to identify, initiate and undertake rigorous quantitative and qualitative economic, financial and political risk analysis and to reach sound judgments. You should be proficient in Excel.
Communication skills - You must be able to marshal arguments in a coherent and concise manner and communicate effectively both orally and in written research; and to represent Fitch externally in a credible, effective and professional manner. This will include leading meetings with senior officials and policy-makers, speaking at conferences and investor events; making TV and media appearances; and drafting complex and sensitive press releases.
Professional - You must be able to work independently and manage your own time and tasks to meet deadlines. While taking responsibility for your own portfolio of sovereign ratings and supporting research, you must also be able to share and debate opinions with colleagues in a professional and respectful manner. Ability to work to tight deadlines, and display a strong degree of flexibility to take on additional responsibilities and respond calmly to changing circumstances, as required.
A candidate at Associate Director level would not be expected to have as long a track record of work experience as a Director, and would be expected to work somewhat more closely with the regional team head.
Fitch Group is a global leader in financial information services with operations in more than 30 countries. Wholly owned by the Hearst Corporation, we are comprised of three main businesses: Fitch Ratings | Fitch Solutions | Fitch Learning.
For more information please visit our websites: www.fitchratings.com | www.fitchsolutions.com | www.fitchlearning.com
Fitch is committed to providing global securities markets with objective, timely, independent and forward-looking credit opinions. To protect Fitch's credibility and reputation, our employees must take every precaution to avoid conflicts of interests or any appearance of a conflict of interest. Should you be successful in the recruitment process at Fitch Ratings you will be asked to declare any securities holdings and other potential conflicts prior to commencing employment. If you, or your immediate family, have any holdings that may conflict with your work responsibilities, you may be asked to divest yourself of them before beginning work.
Fitch is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender expression, gender identity or any other characteristic protected by law.