What Does All This Mean Is Investment Banking Worth It
Ill now return to the three questions in the beginning:
To reiterate, the large banks were forced into paying higher base salaries due to high turnover, widespread job dissatisfaction, and rising prices and salaries elsewhere.
Without those factors, Im sure they would have kept Analysts on $85K $95K base salaries for as long as humanly possible.
In the future, banks in the U.S. will most likely do what European firms have already done and keep base salaries high while reducing the bonus percentage, which keeps total compensation about the same.
Bonus numbers depend mostly on deal activity and fee volume for the year, and those vary substantially based on fiscal and monetary conditions.
We will probably see lower deal activity in the future, but I have no idea if this is one year away, 5-10 years away, or something in between.
Even if that happens, I think it will be difficult for banks to reduce base salaries, so theyll likely cut bonuses to much lower percentages.
Finally, I wrote on paper above because working conditions and lifestyle also play a big role.
Why Are Bankers Paid So Much
The advocate would say theyre paid so much because the banks work on very important transactions that generate big fees. In exchange for such important work, they need to be smart, hard-working, and highly skilled and thus, well-compensated.
The cynic would say theyre paid a lot because the work is super stressful, with a military-like hierarchy, and the hours are unbearable. In fact, the hours are so long that they dont actually make that much per hour.
Goldman Sachs Joins Wall Street Rivals In Boosting Junior Banker Salaries
- First-year analysts, the most junior of investment bankers who are typically recent college graduates, will be paid a $110,000 annual base salary, up from $85,000, according to a person with knowledge of the changes.
- The person added that second-year analysts will earn $125,000, up from $95,000, and first-year associates will get a $25,000 pay bump to $150,000.
- The junior bankers have more news coming: They will learn about the size of their bonuses later this month, according to the person.
In this article
There’s a new minimum wage on Wall Street.
Goldman Sachs is giving its junior bankers a pay raise, the last major Wall Street firm to do so in a year where record deal-making activity has led to fierce competition for workers.
First-year analysts the most junior of investment bankers who are typically recent college graduates will be paid a $110,000 annual base salary, up from $85,000, according to a person with knowledge of the changes. The person added that second-year analysts will earn $125,000, up from $95,000, and first-year associates will get a $25,000 pay bump to $150,000.
The move establishes a new floor for compensation among major Wall Street investment banking programs. The industry was roiled in March when an internal survey done by Goldman analysts detailed long hours and burnout caused by the deals boom rivals immediately seized on the controversy to announce perks including $20,000 special bonuses and Peloton bicycles.
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What Determines The Size Of The Investment Banking Bonus
There are four major factors that determine the size of the year-end bonus:
- Individual Performance Bottom-Bucket vs Top Bucket Ranking
- Group Performance Product/Coverage Group Success
- Firm-Wide Performance Deal Size Volume, Deal Count, Total Revenue
- Firm Type Elite Boutique vs Bulge Bracket vs Middle-Market
How Much Will Your Morgan Stanley Salary And Bonus Be In Hong Kong
The approximate Glassdoor numbers suggest that analyst-level investment bankers at Morgan Stanley in Hong Kong can expect to earn annual base salaries of about HK$880k a year on average, although this would vary depending on whether they are first, second, or third-year analysts. Bonuses at this level can reach HK$500k, depending on performance.
Front-office Morgan Stanley salaries for associates within the firms Hong Kong investment bank are in the region of HK$1.56m, according to the numbers that Morgan Stanley staff have self-reported to Glassdoor. They could potentially earn bonuses of about HK$600k.
Vice presidents in IB jobs at Morgan Stanley in Hong Kong earn around HK$2.08m a year. When you reach the senior ranks, theres another large uptick in your Morgan Stanley Hong Kong salary. Executive directors are paid about HK$2.5m, alongside bonuses that can be as high as HK$1.1m, according to the Glassdoor estimates.
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Investment Banking Associate Salaries Explained
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Formula to Pay:
- The formula for paying salaries to bankers varies from firm to firm.
- Some follow rigid formulas based on how much business a banker brings in, while others pay salaries based on a subjective allocation of corporate finance profits.
- Furthermore, no matter how compensation is structured when business is slow, bonuses taper off swiftly.
- Some investment banking firms tend to pay less than others because they can get away with it.
- But always remember that the quality of experience you get at the entry-level and the company and strength of the people you will work with are far more important than your initial salary.
How Much Do Investment Bankers Make
On average, an entry-level investment banking analyst earns $100,000 annual base salary, while a first-year investment banking associate may earn up to $180,000. Vice presidents are typically paid $200,000-$300,000. The highest on the food chain is the managing director, who makes anywhere from 600k to several million dollars.
Disclaimer:The actual salary you receive will depend greatly on where you are hired. The figures above are ballpark numbers.
Investment banking total compensation is made up of five components:
- Base salary: This is your bread and butter, which youll take home regardless of performance.
- End-of-year bonus: Your end of year bonus will be a percentage of your salary and it depends on your performance, deal flow, industry experience and which ranking bucket you fall into. These bonuses tend to be in the range of 70-100% of base salary and, like base salary, can vary if you are an elite or boutique bank.
- Stub bonus for new hires: When analysts are hired in the summer, theyve been working at the bank for 5-6 months when bonuses are due. These hires get a stub bonus in the region of $20k $30k. Associates hired in the summer will get a lower percentage of base salary.
- Signing bonus: First-year analysts can also receive a one-time signing bonus in the range of $5k $15k. For associates level, the signing bonus is significantly higher, around $10k $30k.
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Investment Banker Salary Changes Vs 2021 And 2020
I am giving very wide ranges for the compensation here because:
Heres an example of the specific problem that all these factors create.
Lets say that a Year 1 Analyst in 2021 reported a bonus of $80K.
This Year 1 Analyst was on an $85k base salary in the first half of 2021, but banks raised this to $100K in the second half of this year.
At the same time, this person became a Year 2 Analyst, which meant a new base salary of $105K.
But in January 2022, banks increased base salaries to $110K for Year 1 Analysts and $125K for Year 2 Analysts, so this person might now be on a $125K base salary.
So, what is his total compensation for the past year?
Is it $80K + $85K = $165K?
How about $80K + $85K * 0.5 + $100K * 0.5 = $172.5K?
Or is it $80K + $100K = $180K?
Or should we go with $80K + $110K = $190K?
I lean toward the first two numbers because, in all likelihood, banks will reduce bonuses due to these higher base salaries.
How Much Is An Investment Banker Salary
On an absolute basis, investment bankers are some of the highest-paid professionals for their age. As a new hire, you can expect to earn over $100,000 straight out of school, which will probably blow most of your classmates out of the water. But the investment banker salary on an hourly basis is another story.
On a per hour basis, investment bankers are not paid nearly as well. With most analysts and associates working over 100 hours per week, their hourly wages can range anywhere between $25-$35 per hour. Thats not bad, but it doesnt sound as good as $100,000 a year did.
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Investment Banking Associate Salary
Whether you are in the finance industry or planning to enter one, get ready to hear a lot about investment banks. You will be amazed to know how these investment banks work and the magnitude with which they work. Pay here is amazing, but the number of working hours is grilling. Many of us are unaware of how these investment bankers work. There are various hierarchical levels, and each level gets paid a handsome salary.
In these articles, we will focus on particular investment banking associate salaries.
The following points that we will cover in-depth:
Investment Banking Analyst Salary In London
Investment banking analyst salaries in London are lower than in NYC.
As is the case in the United States, there is a standard base: In London, almost all firms currently offer a £60k base, growing to £65k and £70k for 2nd and 3rd-year analysts, respectively.
Salary is comparable to London after adjusting GBP to EUR in smaller financial hubs in Europe such as including Switzerland, Frankfurt and Zurich.
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The New Salaries For Investment Bankers In London By Bank
05 October 2021
How much are leading investment banks in London paying junior staff after the recent salary rises?
While much has been written about the impact of salary increases on Wall Street pay, the impact on London salaries has been less clear. A new salary survey from recruitment firm Arkesden Partners sheds some light on the issue and reveals that junior bankers in London are now earning a lot less than juniors on Wall Street.
Arkesden says banks have hiked pay, but some have done so a lot further up the food chain than others.
As the charts below show, the standard salary for a first year analyst in an investment bank in London is now £60k , which is far below the $100k starting point in the U.S. After three years, London salaries rise to £90k at banks like Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, which offer accelerated promotion to associate.
Banks don’t comment on compensation, but Arkesden’s survey suggests that anomalies have opened up between banks that have and haven’t hiked salaries at vice president level.
At Bank of America, Credit Suisse and UBS Arkesden says the new going rate for VPs is £165k. At banks that haven’t increased VP salaries, the going rate is more likely to be £150k, although Morgan Stanley pays £170k and Deutsche pays £140k.
Arkesden notes that banks’ higher salaries mean junior bankers moving to private equity must typically accept a reduction in pay of around £25k. Despite the pay gap, it says most remain willing to do so.
Projected Investment Banking 2021 Bonuses
Johnson Associates, a compensation consulting firm, expects year-end incentives to increase to their highest levels since the Great Recession in 2008 as the financial services industry is benefiting from a sharp rebound in deal volume.
More specifically, the following bonus changes are currently anticipated for 2021:
- Investment Banking Underwriters: Forecasted to Increase by 30% to 35% Year-over-Year
- Investment Banking Advisory & Equities Trading: Estimated to Increased by 20% to 25% YoY
Projected 2021 Bonuses
In 2021, Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan are each preparing to pay out larger-sized bonuses to their investment bankers, with practically all investment banks following suit.
For instance, Goldman Sachs is expected to raise base salaries for their entry-level investment banking analysts from $85,000 to $110,000.
Therefore, in addition to the increased base salary, the top banks are focusing on building a pay-for-performance culture.
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Investment Banker Salary And Bonus Levels: The Main Components
For most bankers, there are five main components to compensation:
Morgan Stanley Bumps First
Tuesday’s move marks the second time in a month the bank lifted salaries for first-year investment banking and global capital markets analysts.
Morgan Stanley is boosting to $110,000 the salaries of first-year analysts working in the research, sales and trading, investment banking and capital markets segments of the firms institutional securities division, the bank told employees Tuesday, according to Business Insider.
When the raises take effect in January, Morgan Stanley would tie Goldman Sachs by offering the heftiest entry-level pay among the countrys major banks.
Tuesday’s move also marks the second time in a month that Morgan Stanley lifted salaries for first-year investment banking and global capital markets analysts. As recently as July, first-year bankers at Morgan Stanley were earning $85,000 a year. That changed Aug. 1, when the firm bumped compensation to $100,000.
Morgan Stanley is also boosting pay for second-year analysts in the research, sales and trading, investment banking and capital markets divisions to $125,000, Business Insider reported Tuesday. Pay for second-year investment banking and global capital markets analysts jumped from $90,000 to $105,000 earlier in August.
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Investment Banking Associate Interview Questions
These will be the general question that you may expect during your interview:
- What do you know about investment banking and this industry?
- What do you know about our firm?
- What about our culture and company appeals to you?
Following are the resume related questions which may be asked:
- Your strengths and weaknesses with proper justification and examples of the same.
- Application/use of your power to investment banking
- Your greatest accomplishment
- How would you describe failure? Experience, if any, and what did you learn from it?
- What qualities can you bring to your team? Examples for the same.
- How would your colleagues describe you?
- How would your manager at a previous job define you?
- What is your leadership style?
Pros & Cons of an Investment Banking Job:
Investment Banking Jobs Upsides
Regional Differences And London Compensation
If you go by the 2020-2021 Arkesden reports, the old numbers in London were:
- Analyst: £50K £60K base salaries and total compensation of £80K £120K.
- Associate: £90K £130K base salaries and total compensation of £150K £240K.
- VP: £140K £170K base salaries and total compensation of £250K £350K.
But banks increased base salaries once again here, so the new numbers seem to be something like:
- Analyst: £60K £90K base salaries .
- Associate: £100K £140K base salaries.
- VP: £150K £180K base salaries.
Total compensation is probably £20K £40K higher for Analysts and Associates and more like £50K+ higher for VPs.
At a 1.35x GBP:USD exchange rate, these figures are still much lower than U.S. compensation, but that has been the case for a long time.
You can blame Brexit, better lifestyle/hours, and pay in competitive industries in Europe being lower as well.
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What Happened To Investment Banking Fees
After an initial slowdown when the pandemic first struck in early 2020, banks have generated record-high fees from M& A and capital markets deals.
Heres 2021 global investment banking revenue by region, with percentage increases over 2020 noted:
According to other sources, global fees were nearly $160 billion, up 22%, with revenue in areas like M& A jumping nearly 50%.
Unsurprisingly, super-loose monetary policy combined with widespread panic about the future led to a boom in deal activity.
And since everyone was working from home, senior bankers could pitch far more companies from the comfort of their small mansions, resulting in record-high paydays for MDs and terrible lifestyles for junior bankers.
At the same time, compensation rose in rival industries, such as tech, and working 80-90 hours per week for $150K in total compensation increasingly seemed like a bad deal.
Together, these factors forced the large banks to increase pay.
That move has generated a few questions:
Ill address these questions at the end, but I want to cover the main components of IB compensation and give some more commentary on the pay increases first: