Dimitrios Sachinidis (Banking and Finance Law LLM 2017)
Dimitrios, a recent LLM alumnus, describes his experience of working in London’s financial services industry since graduating in 2017.
After completing my postgraduate studies at Queen Mary University of London in 2017, I started working in London as a financial regulatory consultant, specialising in the Financial Services and Markets Act and the rules promulgated thereunder by the Financial Conduct Authority. My typical clients are boutique hedge fund and private equity fund managers, whom I advise on how to comply with the rules and guidance stemming from the FCA Handbook.
My experience so far in London’s financial services industry has been interesting. Looking back at my days as a postgraduate student at the Centre for Commercial Law Studies, I can see the effect these studies had on me as a professional. For those employed in an industry with a complex regulatory framework, it is important to develop the ability to efficiently navigate through different laws, whilst maintaining a holistic overview of their field. This twofold ability is not a given and, too often, a good professional skill set that is not underpinned by sound academic foundations, creates a knowledge gap. Attending the Banking and Finance Law LLM at an early stage in my career provided me with a solid footing upon which to build and enhance my professional expertise.
In this regard, one of the things I enjoyed most about my LLM was the interplay between high-level and specialised modules. High-level modules, such as Regulation of Financial Markets, equipped me well in terms of showcasing to colleagues and clients alike an in-depth understanding of the driving force behind recent financial services legislation. Specialised modules, such as Securities Regulation, allowed for a deeper dive into key legislation, such as MiFID II, AIFMD and MAR, providing a technical and critical analysis of those.
Another equally important aspect was the opportunity to explore less known, but intellectually stimulating areas of law, such as sovereign debt restructuring, focusing on the recent European crisis (EU Financial and Monetary Law), but also on the history and workouts of such crises globally (Sovereign Debt Restructuring). In the same context, attending a couple of lectures by the living legend of sovereign debt workouts, Lee Buchheit, remains my preferred highlight from that year.
I would encourage anyone aspiring to have a career in financial services regulation to follow the Banking and Finance Law LLM at Queen Mary. A year’s access to high-quality academic resources, as well as the opportunity to actively engage with the academic staff at the Centre for Commercial Law Studies, together provide an excellent setting for those seeking to continue their studies in this field of law.