ZeroBeta founder Rodrigo Silva Cosme, a MS ’16 Stevens Institute of Technology’s School of Business graduate, recently returned to his alma mater to present his master’s thesis, explaining how machine learning can apply to financial markets.
Cosme, who was invited by Professor Khaldoun Khashanah, explains; “The world is getting more automated, more efficient, more intelligent, and finance is no different. You need complete professionals who know how to code and also can handle the financial side of the business and implement solutions.” Cosme, who arrived in the United States with a “lifetime fascination with financial markets,” believes people who choose to trade by themselves can’t do it optimally.
The São Paulo-based ZeroBeta is a unicorn of sorts in the Brazilian market, which “lacks the liquidity that allows for more diversified risk in investment strategies.” The startup leverages algorithmic trading and portfolio optimization techniques to “build smarter strategies for trading.
Cosme continues, saying, “Instead of working for [hedge fund managers], we trade with them—we develop the strategies for the accounts, we make the trading decisions, and they do the commercial side of the business, getting customers and raising capital.”
Cosme attributes ZeroBeta’s success largely to the first-hand exposure he received at Stevens to the myriad ways that finance and technology can intersect. “What I do at my job, every day, is what I learned at Stevens — from trading option spreads, to coding through C++ design patterns, to portfolio rebalancing. If you’re not able to find the answers with the kind of resources Stevens has, you can’t find them anywhere.”
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