Daisy (Yun) Li

MA 2004

Daisy Li

I’m truly grateful to have had the opportunity to study Economics at Dalhousie University and always look back very fondly on my time there.

I graduated from Dalhousie University in 2004 with a Master of Arts (MA) degree in Economics.  

Economics study at Dal equipped me with strong Economic theory foundation, mathematical and statistical knowledge, analytical and critical thinking skills needed to pursue a doctorate degree. I was interested in the valuation of different financial assets, how the markets are traded, and how money moves. After I graduated from Dal, I went on to study finance and completed my PhD in Finance at Western University.  Upon completion of the PhD program, I debated about whether to pursue a career in academic research or find opportunities to apply years of learning to industry work. In the end, I landed on a job at Bank of Montreal in risk management and have worked at BMO since then.

Years of study and research in finance and economics have been invaluable in the roles I’ve held.  In my current role as Director, CCR Production, I am part of the counterparty credit risk (CCR) management team, responsible for identifying, monitoring, developing and maintaining CCR exposure calculation and models for internal risk control purpose. Counterparty credit risk is the risk that counterparty to a financial contract might default prior to the settlement of the contract and will not make the payments required by the contracts. It differs from more traditional forms of credit risk by 1) the uncertainty of the risk amount and 2) bilateral nature of the risk. The job requires in-depth knowledge of financial product pricing (including derivatives and security financing transactions) and risk factor modelling, as well as of a good understanding of macroeconomics and financial market. I follow financial markets and the economy closely to assess and identify potential risk.  Economics training not only prepared me with knowledge to understand economic development and the impact of economic policies, but also problem-solving skills to understand complex financial products and issues. More importantly it also provided perspective and skills to analyze complex issues by looking into key and essential factors in a simplified way, which is essential in daily life and business decision making.

I’m truly grateful to have had the opportunity to study Economics at Dalhousie University and always look back very fondly on my time there. When I came from China to study at Dalhousie University twenty years ago, it was a totally new and different experience for me – the country, the city, the university, and graduate student life. It was challenging at first, but the transition was made easier as Dal Econ provided a close-knit learning environment. I took courses with Professor Swapan Dasgupta, Lars Osberg, Kuan Xu, Talan İşcan, and Teresa Cyrus. They are all passionate for the subject, knowledgeable in their field, truly care about the students, and have made the classes enjoyable. Although it’s been twenty years, the time I was sitting in the classroom, learning about Economic theories, attending Friday afternoon seminars, and hanging out with classmates still feel so vivid. Oh, and the fond memories of being pleasantly surprised when first time I got a lollipop together with exam papers.  I have been living in Canada since then. Halifax is like my hometown in Canada, and Dal Econ feels like home.