Chopper Trading’s Chess Team

Chopper Trading employees apply themselves to a diverse array of sports and hobbies in their free time.  One of those hobbies is chess, sanctioned by the Chopper Chess Team, which plays in the East Division of the Chicago Industrial Chess League.  Seven of Chopper’s employees meet once a week to practice and prepare for competitions scattered throughout the fall, winter and spring seasons.

While some activities can be picked up and set down without too much difficulty, chess is not one of them. Since the team’s creation in 2012, it has exhibited the dedication necessary to excel at the game, and the hard work has paid off in a big way.  Every player has demonstrated consistent and marked improvement over time, culminating in a third place team ranking in the East Division this year.

From what I hear, Chopper players have frequently had the pleasure of upsetting higher rated players and teams.  In the 2012-2013 season, Chopper’s team won the league-wide “highest team upset award,” and a Chopper player won the league-wide “highest individual upset award.”

The Chopper Chess Team has improved its final standings every year. In 2014, the players achieved their best record with six wins and three losses resulting in the previously mentioned third place ranking in the East Division. While this technically qualified the Chopper team to participate in the league-wide playoffs for the first time, our players were unfortunately unable to participate due to travel and scheduling conflicts.

Nonetheless, Chopper’s team has led victories over employees from a number of prominent Chicago area businesses and institutions such as Blue Cross Blue Shield, the American Medical Association, Enova Financial, and Northwestern University.

Overall, I think the Chopper Chess Team is highly representative of Chopper employees as a whole: driven, hard-working, and always bent on improving.  I want to congratulate the team on a well-played season, and wish everyone good luck in their competitions this next year.

To learn more about Rajiv Fernando and Chopper Trading activity, follow @rajiv_fernando and @ChopperTrading on Twitter.

Chess at Chopper Trading

At Chopper, we balance our serious commitment to our work with an equal but lighthearted focus on activities off of the trading floor. One of those activities is the Chopper Trading Chess Team, which is currently halfway into the season, and making a final push to qualify for the playoffs.

The team competes in the Chicago Industrial Chess League as a member of the East division. Chopper’s division is comprised of 10 teams mostly from local companies in the financial and healthcare industries, as well as Loyola and Northwestern Universities. The Industrial Chess League’s regular season runs from October through early April, at which point the qualifying teams enter the playoffs. Chopper currently ranks in third place, behind Northwestern (first) and Blue Cross Blue Shield (second).

The team was founded by two Chopper employees, who, lucky for us, brought their competitive chess experience and knowledge to the firm from their college chess teams. The founders have talked to the team about how they see a strong relationship between trading and chess, as both require preparation, discipline, objective reasoning, passion, and drive.  I couldn’t agree more, and they certainly make a good case, as the team’s eight-person roster includes five of our active traders.

Regardless of the activity: trading, chess, soccer, etc., the team at Chopper believes in pursuing success through hard work, strong ethics and a collaborative environment.


Our Chess Team at Chopper Trading

This fall marks the 2nd year of  Chopper Trading’s  participation in the Chicago Industrial Chess League. Our division consists of Chicago Loop-based corporations and a few university chess teams so matches are conveniently located near the Chicago Board of Trade (CBOT). Our Chopper Trading Chess Team meets up primarily on Tuesday evenings for practice and competitive matches against other teams. The season runs until early spring.


Good luck, team!


Chopper Trading Chess Club

Chopper Trading Chess Club A few members of the Chopper Trading Chess Team