## What Is the SIG Online Assessment?

The Susquehanna International Group (SIG) Online Assessment, often referred to by SIG as the Capital Markets Test or Quantitative Evaluation, is a brief aptitude test used as the **initial screening stage** for SIG candidates. Oftentimes, the name of the current year will be added to the test name, e.g., “SIG Capital Markets 2024″.

The test is provided by the testing company Mettl and contains 23 questions in **3 sections**. The overall time to complete the test is 25 minutes.

Test topics cover mostly questions regarding corporate financial analysis and accounting, combined with relevant mathematical calculations.

Let’s break down the 3 test sections, including a sample question of each.

Pro Tip

We recommend taking the SIG Assessment BACKWARDS (starting with section 3, then 2, then 1).

Why? Check out the Tips section.

## Test Structure and Question Format

The SIG Capital Markets / Quantitative Evaluation contains 3 sections:

### Section #1 – Accounting and Corporate Finance Theory

This section contains 7 multiple-choice questions on **basic financial terms and standards**. Each question has 4 possible answers, only one of which is correct.

The questions are **mostly** **theoretical**, and do not require calculations.

#### Sample Question

What is the best metric to value a fast-growing, non-profitable company?

- P/E
- P/S
- P/B
- EBITDA

You may find the answer and explanation to this question, alongside additional sample questions from the SIG Quantitative Evaluation in the **Free Practice** section.

### Section #2 – Stock Valuation and Financial Analysis

This section contains 7 questions, both multiple-choice and free-form. The questions combine **understanding of fiscal principles**, as well as calculating** theoretical values of stocks and companies**.

#### Sample Question

Company 1 is negotiating a deal to acquire Company 2. The proposed acquisition price is $15 per share. When the deal was announced, the initial stock price of Company 2 was $10. However, the agreement collapses, and Company 2 remains an independent identity. In the time between the announcement and collapse of the deal, S&P500 is down 3%.

Estimate the trading price for Company 2.

Pro Tip

Free-form questions in the SIG Online Assessment will direct you in which formatting to put your answer (e.g., $xx.xx, $kx, etc.). Make sure you follow this formatting precisely!

### Section #3 – Analyst Expectations

This section contains 9 questions, most of which require you to **perform analyst expectations based on various financial situations**. Therefore, most questions in this section are free-form.

In addition, the section also includes several basic probability questions.

#### Sample Question

Company 1 is about to launch a new product. 75% of the company’s product launches are successful. 60% of launches are moderately successful, and in that case the stock price will rise to $6, and 40% of them are extremely successful, in which case the stock price will rise to $8.

If the product launch fails, however, the stock price may fall to $4, if the failure is moderate, which happens 50% of the time, or $2.5, if the launch is an extreme failure.

What is, in your opinion, the fair stock value?

## What Does the SIG Assessment Test Measure?

The SIG Quantitative Evaluation / Capital Markets Assessment will assess three major areas:

- Basic knowledge of finance and accounting.
- Problem-solving skills.
- Numerical reasoning.

All these are intended to measure whether you have the required knowledge and cognitive ability to perform the day-to-day work expected of SIG employees.

## The SIG Test Invitation

The test invitation is actually split into 2:

- The SIG Invitation
- The Mettl (test provider) invitation.

### The SIG Invitation

Once you have passed the initial resume stage, you will get a test invitation from SIG, with some basic information about the test.

Here are the major things to consider:

- The assessment is held by a third-party
**testing company named Mettl**.
- The invitation from SIG
**will not include a test link**. That will be sent separately, directly from Mettl.
- You may use a
**pen, paper, and calculator**, but no additional source.
**Do NOT try to cheat!** If you navigate out of the testing window or open a new tab, your assessment will be instantly stopped.
- You have
**7 days** to complete the assessment.

### The Mettl Invitation

The second email you will receive is from Mettl, the test provider. That is a very simple notification, containing a link to the test itself and a prerequisite system compatibility check.

Pro Tip

The SIG Assessment test interface may be a bit confusing. In lieu of the short time frame for the overall test, we recommend reading the Test Interface section as well.

## Test Interface

Here is an illustration of how the SIG/Mettl testing screen generally looks like:

Several things to note:

- The test instructions will state that the sections are “untimed”, but that only means that
**the time limit is for the overall test**, and not for any particular section.
- Once you have started, you
**cannot pause the assessment** in any way.
**You may move freely between questions and sections.**
- You may
**mark a question for later review**.
- The test interface includes a “
**question filter**”, which allows you to conveniently track your answered and unanswered questions.

## Free Practice

This free practice contains **5 sample questions and answers**, covering various topics of the SIG Quantitative Evaluation / Capital Markets Assessment.

These are intended to give you a feeling for the test’s world of content and level of difficulty. The recommended solving time is **4 minutes**.

Good luck!

### Question 1

What is the best metric to value a fast-growing, non-profitable company?

- P/E
- P/S
- P/B
- EBITDA

Answer and Explanation

The correct answer is **B – P/S** (Price to Sales ratio).

In the case presented, traditional metrics like Price to Earnings (P/E) or Price to Book (P/B) might not be effective. That is because these metrics mostly rely on earnings and book value, which could be very small or even negative in the case of a fast-growing, non-profitable company.

The same goes for EBITDA (Enterprise Value to Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization). This metric is also not a good choice, since EBITDA involves operating earnings, which might not yet be significant in the case of a non-profitable company.

The Price to Sales (P/S) ratio, on the other hand, compares the market capitalization of a company to its total revenue. This metric is useful for valuing companies with high growth potential and low or negative earnings. A high P/S ratio indicates that investors are willing to pay a premium for each unit of sales generated by the company, which is typical for rapidly growing enterprises.

### Question 2

You buy a drink for $2.5, and randomly pay with one of six bills found in your pocket:

- 3 bills of $5
- 2 bills of $10
- 1 bill of $20

What is the average sum you get as change?

Answer and Explanation

The correct answer is **$6.70.**

Since the bill used to pay is picked randomly, to find the average change value, we need to calculate the probability of each bill showing up, and multiply it by the respective value of change:

- $5 bill – 3/6 = 50%
- $10 bill – 2/6 = 33%
- $20 bill – 1/6 = 17%

Average Change = 0.5 x (5 – 2.5) + 0.33 x (10 – 2.5) + 0.17 x (20 – 2.5) = 6.7

Note that the answer may seem counterintuitive, as you will NEVER get exactly $6.70 as change. However, that is the **average **sum you will get as change, given the data.

### Question 3

Company 1 is negotiating a deal to acquire Company 2. The proposed acquisition price is $15 per share. When the deal was announced, the initial stock price of Company 2 was $10. However, the agreement collapses, and Company 2 remains an independent identity. In the time between the announcement and collapse of the deal, S&P500 is down 3%.

Estimate the trading price for Company 2.

Answer and Explanation

The correct answer is **$9.70**.

We need to estimate the current standalone value of Company 2’s stock after the deal falls apart. That current value is calculated as follows:

Original Price + Estimated Change (According to S&P50) =

$10 + $10 x (-0.03) = $9.70

The original bid made by Company 1 ($15) is irrelevant.

### Question 4

Company 1 is about to launch a new product. 75% of the company’s product launches are successful. 60% of launches are moderately successful, and in that case the stock price will rise to $6, and 40% of them are extremely successful, in which case the stock price will rise to $8.

If the product launch fails, however, the stock price may fall to $4, if the failure is moderate, which happens 50% of the time, or $2.5, if the launch is an extreme failure.

What is, in your opinion, the fair stock value?

Answer and Explanation

The correct answer is **$5.9125.**

Let’s summarize all probabilities and stock values in a table:

**Scenario** |
**Probability** |
**Price** |

**Success** |
**0.75** |
**—** |

Moderate |
0.6 |
$6 |

Extreme |
0.4 |
$8 |

**Failure** |
**0.25** |
**—** |

Moderate |
0.5 |
$4 |

Extreme |
0.5 |
$2.5 |

The calculation is done as follows:

Stock Value = 0.75 x (0.6 x 6 + 0.4 x 8) + 0.25 x (0.5 x 4 + 0.5 x 2.5) =

In a nutshell, for each scenario price is multiplied by the relevant probability, and then all probabilities are summed.

E.g., the stock price in the case of an extreme success equals:

Stock Price in Case of Extreme Success ($8) x Probability of Success (0.75) x Probability of Extreme (0.4).

The final calculation presented above is a compact form of these calculations across all possible scenarios.

Pro Tip

You may also encounter reverse expectation calculations on the SIG Assessment. Check out the next example.

### Question 5

Company X’s stock is trading at $15. The company is expecting a ruling in an important legal case. If the company wins the case, stock price will rise to $22, but if the company loses, it will go down to $10.

What are, approximately, Company X’s estimated chances of winning the case?

Answer and Explanation

The correct answer is **42%.**

The current trading price of $15 is the result of the market’s expectations as for Company X’s chances of winning its legal case. Therefore, the way to solve this question is by using the exact same formula as in question 4, but in reverse.

We will note the expected probability of winning as W. therefore, the probability of losing is 1 – W.

15 = 22W + 10 x (1 – W)

W = 0.416, so approximately 42%.

## Tips

Considering all the unique features of the SIG Quantitative Evaluation Assessment, here are **4 tips for acing it**:

### Tip #1 – Start from the End

While the SIG Capital Markets Test is not a speed test, time is a contributing factor, especially in sections 2 and 3, where calculations are required.

The questions in section 1, however, are multiple-choice theory questions, and extra time is not very likely to help here.

As such, start with sections 3 and 2, which are more time consuming, and leave the quicker questions on section 1 for last. The Test Interface allows you to do that.

### Tip #2 – Master Your Calculator

The SIG Quantitative Evaluation Test allows you to use a calculator.

Most of the calculations required on the SIG test questions can be summarized into one or two equations – equations that modern calculators can solve in a single click. When practicing, we recommend taking this into account**, formulating these equations in advance, then typing them into the calculator in their entirety**.

This method is:

- Faster
- Less prone of calculation errors

However, do remember that even minute calculation errors may disqualify your answer in the free-form questions, so it is recommended to always double-check.

### Tip #3 – Refresh Your Memory on the Theory

Make sure you spend some time going over **basic concepts and terms in accounting, corporate finance, and financial analysis**. These will constitute most of the questions in section 1 and may also be required in several questions on the other two sections.

### Tip #4 – Follow the Required Answer Format

As previously mentioned, the free-form questions will usually describe the exact answer format you should type.

You MUST follow this format, as failing to do so will likely disqualify your response, even if it is correct.