by Brian DeChesare Comments (71)

2012 Bonus Recap: Investment Banking Bonuses Go Bust?

So we decided to do something a little… different for bonus news this year.

And no, not just because everyone was expecting bonuses to collapse in a fiery apocalypse.

What actually happened was far less destructive: bonuses decreased by less than what many people were expecting, and our predictions from a few months ago were almost 100% accurate.

Investment Banking Bonuses: 2007 to 2012

Here it is in all its glory: our very first infographic.

And it’s on a topic that you might just be slightly interested in (click the image below to view the Large version… or click right here).

Investment Banking Bonuses, 2007 - 2012

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Oh, you wanted textual explanations as well? OK, fine, here goes:

Show Me the Numbers

Numbers varied within each tier this year, but here were the general ranges:

  • 1st Year Top Tier: $50-60K USD
  • 2nd Year Top Tier: $65-75K USD
  • 3rd Year Top Tier: $85-95K USD

Coincidentally, these numbers may remind you of our 2012 bonus predictions were almost 100% correct (no need for gifts or applause, thanks).

Base salaries at large banks were $70K USD for 1st year analysts, $80K for 2nd year analysts, and $90K for 3rd year analysts – so all-in compensation was $120-130K for 1st year analysts, $145-155K for 2nd year analysts, and $175-185K for 3rd year analysts.

The range in bonuses was also enormous this year, with pay varying from $20K (or less?) to $50K as you went from bottom tier to top tier. Well, except at Wells Fargo apparently (really? what?).

Here’s more on the numbers from Dealbreaker:

If you want to report different numbers or write in to report what bonuses looked like in other regions, go ahead.

If you’re wondering about the hedge fund and private equity numbers, those are all from Job Search Digest and the annual compensation surveys they conduct.

So What Happened?

The usual: there was a 25% decrease in deal activity in the first half of 2012, the “recovery” in the US continued to be slower than expected (can you even call it a recovery?), and Europe somehow got even worse as leaders there continued to embrace failed policies.

Emerging markets fared a little better, but even they suffered from slower-than-expected growth as various crises all over the world reduced demand for exports.

Even the tech bubble showed signs of possibly slowing down or bursting with the debacle that was the Facebook IPO. Yes, it might become slightly difficult to raise funding once again.

Altogether, it was a great year for everyone!

Why Hasn’t Pay Fallen By That Much, Relatively Speaking?

Looking at all the data above and considering how poorly the economy has performed the past few years, you might now be wondering, “Wait a minute, how has pay held up so… decently… if things are this bad?”

There are a few ways to think about that one:

  1. Bonuses are not 100% correlated to the general economy – they’re not even close to 100% correlated, in fact, since companies still do deals and raise capital even if consumers are suffering.
  2. Hedge fund pay has actually increased over 20% since 2007, and even average PE pay has increased over 10%. That is mostly because they still remain lightly regulated and haven’t drawn government officials’ wrath – plus, they are not as dependent on companies doing deals. Once your fund is raised, you keep getting paid… unless the fund collapses, of course.

Or you could just take all of this as a sign that you should forget about banking altogether and just move to a hedge fund (you might even get to retire early and travel the world).

Predictions for Next Year

On the investment banking side, huge changes are unlikely because… well, pay has not really changed that much since the massive fall-off after 2007, and the economy seems unlikely to improve significantly in less than a year.

Hedge fund and private equity pay will also hold up for the foreseeable future, but it’s unlikely to increase by a huge amount this year into next year.

Even John Paulson has been struggling, after all.

Increasing the tax rate on carried interest would make a big impact on pay, but even if that somehow passes and becomes a law it will still take years to take effect.

So you should be safe once you make that elusive exit to the $20 billion fund you’ve been eyeing.

Any questions?

Historical Bonus Predictions & Actual Numbers

M&I - Brian

About the Author

Brian DeChesare is the Founder of Mergers & Inquisitions and Breaking Into Wall Street. In his spare time, he enjoys memorizing obscure Excel functions, editing resumes, obsessing over TV shows, traveling like a drug dealer, and defeating Sauron.

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  1. Will you be doing something similar to this article for this year soon?

    1. Later this year, yes. We generally project analyst bonuses in May/June and then give actuals in July/August.

  2. Actually, entrepreneurship arguably can make less than finance using median numbers: http://www.ehow.com/info_7908995_salary-range-entrepreneur.html

    If we’re measuring only for 1st year compensation, this is almost certainly the case. Entrepreneurs during their 1st year could be earning negative compensation due to initial start-up capital cost.

    Plus, it’s always best to combine entrepreneurship with finance. They’re not completely separate. Warren Buffett used to be the world’s richest man in 2008, right before the crash of the stock markets.

    1. Hah, yes, agreed with you on both counts there…

  3. Brian,

    What do you think about Goldman’s announcement about doing away with two-year contracts and eliminating bonuses for analysts completing the program? Think the other banks will follow?

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443524904577649830558256586.html?ru=yahoo&mod=yahoo_hs

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Maybe? Really can’t say because it depends on different bank’s policies etc

  4. Very irrelevant question but out of curiosity, i d like to know what software has been used for such fantastic presentations?
    Also, why isn’t there a tweet or share button on the blog itself?

    I have asked this before, but i want to know if investor relations would garner as much money as the analysts in IBD?

    1. Can’t say on that one because the designers worked on this.

      There are social sharing buttons at the bottom of the post – I’m not sure what you’re asking about? You’ll see the Twitter, Facebook, and G+ icons there.

      No, investor relations analysts would make significantly less than IB analysts because there is less money to go around.

      1. M&I - Nicole

        Agreed, though I personally think being in IR is a bit more interesting. Your hours I presume will be better so the pay is justified

        1. Thank you Nicole n Brian.
          Also am guessing IR wont need CFA or much finance technicalities.. please correct me if am wrong.

          But is it possible to find out from the designers about the software?
          Or is that confidential matter?

          1. M&I - Nicole

            True though it might be good to have a CFA and/or top tier MBA degree since you’ll be dealing with v sophisticated investors

            What software?

          2. The one that you have used for the presentation above.

            I have 6+ experience in marketing in sectors varying from hospitality, telecom to tech space, and an mba from decent college in india n europe. even though i like finance but not at all keen on cfa.

            does dealing with them mean discussing LBO models?? Or what else?

          3. So there isnt much a difference in being an IB analyst and being in Investor Relations??

          4. Yes. IR is very different. We’re covering it soon.

  5. Great article Brian! Very informative!

    With that said, I do have to disagree with the claim that IB pay beats the pay at top tech companies today.

    Pay in tech isn’t as widely published but as part of the industry myself (I used to be interested in IB), I can assure you that the top tech companies can quite easily beat IB pay at the Analyst/ Assoc level. To give you some concrete numbers, I can give you the standard pay today for a CS undergrad straight out of college at one of the top companies in Seattle:

    – 100-105k base
    – 30-35k Signing
    – 100-200k in stock options vested over 4/5 years
    – Wide ranging performance bonuses.

    If you tally up these numbers, add in the COL difference and in general the better lifestyle/ perks/ hours, I think we could potentially be very off claiming that an IB job or pay is still better at the entry levels.

    One could of course argue that the pay ladder is steeper in IB but its hard to get accurate factual information from the tech side to back that claim. You of course have the extreme outliers in tech heard about in mainstream media who break 8 figures before they can even grow a beard but whats less known outside the tech circle is the worth of top engineers in the valley beyond the Zuckerbergs of the world.

    For example, most early/ mid 20’s engineers that I know at Google easily beat the 200k mark in total comp with the top engineers getting enormous stock options and bonuses. Quoting Steve Yegge, a top engineer at Google:

    “The rewards and incentives are too numerous to talk about here, but the financial incentives range from gift certificates and massage coupons up through giant bonuses and stock grants, where I won’t define “giant” precisely, but think of Google’s scale and let your imagination run a bit wild, and you probably won’t miss the mark by much”

    Its also relatively common for the big companies to acqui-hire startups at enormous sums solely for the talent (again not just the likes of Instagram and such. The more common case would be to acquire a very small startup for low 7-8 figures that you would never hear about in the WSJ).

    1. Point taken, but I have to disagree with you. And I did a Computer Science major at Stanford and worked at several tech companies, so (hopefully) I know more about tech than most people.

      1) You’re quoting numbers from one of the top tech companies… but outside of the largest few, pay is not that high. Yes Amazon, Google, and Facebook can afford to pay that much but the average tech company cannot. Pay at lesser-known but still solid companies would be significantly less. Whereas in finance, even at smaller / unknown firms, pay is still relatively high, especially on the PE and hedge fund side where it still goes into the hundreds of thousands of dollars even at smaller places. Obviously a bigger fund size still = more potential for higher pay but you don’t see the same drop-off.

      2) There is no progression, or at least very little progression, for engineers. I know this because many friends have been out of school for 10-15 years now and haven’t really seen massive pay increases. What company is going to pay an engineer $500K per year to program for them? And the pay at different levels in finance is very well-known and plenty of people move up to that level after being in the industry for some time.

      3) These tech positions are open to a much narrower set of people. They would never, for example, hire an Econ or English major for the roles you’re referring to. Whereas pretty much anyone could go for IB roles or roles in finance in general without having completed a finance major. You just need the right work experience and enough demonstrated interest.

      4) “Relatively common to do acqui-hires”? I don’t think so… sure you hear about them a lot but statistically the majority of start-ups go nowhere and don’t get acquired for any sum of money. And an acquisition in that range would hardly make the founders rich, assuming they’ve raised funding… the investors would get the majority or at least a good portion in many cases.

      In short: I think your estimates are high and not realistic for the average engineer going to a normal tech company, and only represent pay at the very top places. And the lack of a clear progression and so on further reduce the attractiveness of pay there.

      I think the other issue with working at a company like that is that it’s really not challenging… I’ve had tons of friends who joined Amazon / Google / Facebook, got bored, and left or simply stayed there because it was easy and they got used to being paid a high amount for not doing much. One friend at Microsoft, for example, “works” about 2 hours per day and still gets paid relatively well. But what’s it setting him up to do in the future? How is it going to help him advance 20 years from now?

      1. Isn’t it fair to limit the discussion to just the top tech companies so as not make an apples and oranges comparison?

        Your post refers to IB and high finance after IB, field that are exclusive to presumably the top students at top schools. Similarly I am referring to perhaps the top 10-20 companies in the tech industry that would equate numbers wise to the BB’s + elite MM/ Boutiques in the industry. Perhaps you can help me here but can you really get into (at a statistically significant rate) these small shops HF/PE that pay enormously without a solid banking background from these top 10-15 firms?

        I am pretty sure if I just went on Glassdoor and searched for the average pay in the Finance industry in the entire country, it may be no more than 60k. How many top Stanford CS guys do you know that are working in IT for a Dunder Mifflin equivalent in Ohio?

        For your 2nd point, I think you are again looking at the entire tech industry and making that claim, which is akin to me claiming that “MLB players” make more than everyone in the sport of basketball and hence baseball is more lucrative than basketball. If you are referring to only the high end of Finance, we have to stick with the high end of tech. And by high end, I dont mean just Goog and FB, there are several that pay really well including less well known ones such as Salesforce, VMWare, Qualcomm + well established startups such as Palantir, Yelp etc. They have to to compete for the talent. I base this off of my own college recruiting + interviewing experience.

        “What company is going to pay an engineer $500K per year to program for them”

        This is equivalent to saying what bank would pay an Analyst 500k per year? Much like how an Analyst moves up the ladder to higher positions, a good programmer (if he so desires) does the same to positions with obvious higher pay potential such as a Tech Lead, Manager, Director, Architect all the way up to the CEO of the company. When the heart and soul of your company are complicated tech products, you are not going to have pure bred finance or law guys running your company at the higher levels.

        In sum, while its hard to completely disagree with your point, an apples to apples comparison is very hard. I would argue that the financial potential in both fields is pretty darn good to a point where one should really follow their passion. Doing so would be easier said than done if you were deciding between IB and say marketing but between high tech and IB, not so much.

        1. Quick Edit although I am sure you got the point!

          MLB players” make more than the AVERAGE PAY in the sport of basketball and hence baseball is more lucrative than basketball

        2. I really won’t want to get into an extended argument with you over this, because I run this as a business and continuing the discussion here helps neither myself nor our customers, but just to play along and spend a few minutes answering your points…

          Nope, you don’t need to go to a top school or anything to make a lot of money in finance and finance-related industries such as commercial real estate, brokerage, and so on. And yes, you can most definitely get into small firms that pay more without having been at a top 10-15 firm first. I’ve seen the stats and they do compensation surveys every year. Glassdoor is a joke and should not be relied upon for anything. Check out Greenwich Associates for real data…. they spend a lot of money doing real surveys. And read the rest of this site more on why you don’t have to be at a top firm to do any of this.

          Look at the REAL numbers in that survey and you’ll see what I mean: across all *front-office* roles at firms of all sizes and types, pay is still higher at the entry to mid and even top levels. I would share it here but it’s copyrighted.

          Yes, you can make a lot of money in both industries. But if you want to make the most money, finance is still better, on average, for someone who is willing to work his/her ass off for many years. Getting to CEO of a large tech company is far more difficult than getting to the Partner level of an investment firm, because there are fewer spots and much more dedication, effort, and most of all navigation of office politics are required.

          It sounds like you’re very passionate about tech, which is great. I used to be passionate about tech, but then I realized I enjoyed making the world a worse place, killing people, and so on, so it made more sense to move into this (this comment is meant to be sarcastic).

          That’s about all I’m going to say, for the reasons stated above. It’s great that you’re passionate about tech and I’m sure you’ll do well in it.

          Most people reading this site would rather do something client or investment-facing, where they’re either selling to customers or making investment decisions, as opposed to simply working on the product. Neither one is right or wrong. It depends on your personality and if you’re exceptionally good at selling products and making good investments, you can make a lot of money because you directly drive revenue.

          And yes, you can make a lot of money in both fields, but ultimately the average ceiling is still higher in finance and you see the highest ceiling if you’re the Founder of a firm that does well in either field.

  6. LegallyBlonde2

    (i) Agree on the first point. The highest paying biglaw firms will pay according to the NY scale for the first 8 yrs which goes like:

    Year Salary (US$)
    First 160,000
    Second 170,000
    Third 185,000
    Fourth 210,000
    Fifth 230,000
    Sixth 250,000
    Seventh 270,000
    Eighth 280,000

    with corresponding class-year related bonuses of:

    Year Bonus (US$)
    First 17,500
    Second 20,000
    Third 22,500
    Fourth 25,000
    Fifth 27,500
    Sixth 30,000
    Seventh 32,500

    So it’s not a bad deal really but yes not as sharp initial jumps in pay as you would find in banking.

    (ii) As for MD / Partner level pay, I disagree.

    You mentioned that a typical (average) MD would make between US$ 200-300k (in a bad year) to US$ 1-3mm (in a good year).
    (http://www.mergersandinquisitions.com/investment-banking-hierarchy/)

    Law firm partner compensation actually fares highly favorably with these numbers. Profits per equity partner (PEP) at the largest Biglaw firms ranges from US$ 2.6-3.6mm per annum.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_law_firms_by_profits_per_partner)

    Also, as you mentioned, law firm pay is not directly correlated to how many deals you close in a year because of hourly billing, so these PEP figures stay practically constant regardless of whether it’s been a good/bad year, unlike the IB MDs who can potentially make 70% less depending on the year.

    So at the higher levels, IB is really not necessarily the best paymaster.

    (I am of course not talking about PE/HFs here as the compensation there is dependent on very different variables).

    (iii) Finally, regarding lawyers being miserable at work, I agree that’s a fairly widespread stereotype but working in the legal industry myself, I see a fair amount of miserable bankers as well. Both professions have the ‘grunt-work’ (due diligence, endless corrections to pitch books for bankers, etc) in the early years, but I personally find structuring deals from a legal perspective highly stimulating (although it’s the partners who work on high-level structuring issues), and I’ve been able to get more client contact at my level than my peers in banking.

    I guess it’s ultimately about fit and where you feel more suited to working.

    1. I don’t think those Profit figures hold up at smaller law firms because there’s less work and the clients don’t pay as much. Whereas even at smaller banks and PE firms, Partners in finance can still make a lot of money.

      Just show me a law firm Partner who makes $1 billion+ in cash per year like some of the top HF managers and you can win this debate. :)

  7. LegallyBlonde

    Hi Brian,

    It’s misleading to quote top-performers’ bonus numbers as the benchmark IB pay for their particular level of seniority.

    I feel that the average / median number would be a more truthful representation of where you’re likely to stand at the end of the year.

    Also, as to IB still being the most financially attractive career choice, honestly I think that’s highly debatable, especially in Asia.

    For e.g. my friend from law school (which is an undergrad LL.B. degree in Asia, mind you) is set to make around US$ 115k all-in as a first year trainee solicitor at a British law firm (equivalent stature as a first-year analyst in IB), and on qualifying as an Associate in about 2 years, she plans to switch to a Wall Street law firm in Hong Kong / Singapore which start you off at a US$ 160k base + bonus structure and your pay and bonuses broadly follow NY standard law firm rates after that. And this is without any significant US-level law school debt (which law firm associates in NY for e.g. would still have to pay off).

    Keeping in mind that law firms pay about 90% of their pay as base (cash) salaries, I feel that biglaw remains a highly viable and less volatile alternative to banking in Asia.

    1. LegallyBlonde

      One correction, the first-year trainee salary is about US$ 90k all-in (not US$ 115k as mentioned above), but the rest of the numbers still hold.

      On a side-note, would you have IB numbers for Asia this year as well?

      Great job with the site as always :)

    2. I agree it would be better to show averages, but we don’t have the data for that. And, to be honest, the median number would not necessarily be different by a huge amount since the base salary takes up 50% or more of the total compensation.

      Regarding the comparison to law, nope, I have to disagree with you there, for one simple reason: the progression up the ladder is much slower and you don’t see as much of a pay bump as you do in finance. For example, let’s say it takes 7 years to go from Associate to Partner… do you actually see a pay bump of $50-100K per year as you do in finance? The answer is no, because you’re paid based on billable hours and ultimately your money is tied to your time, whereas in finance it’s tied to closed deals (banking) or to investment performance (PE / HFs), which means the ceiling is far higher since your money is no longer dependent on your time.

      Maybe in Asia or other countries you can pull off a law career without law school, but in the US that’s not possible so it’s not really a fair comparison.

      And then there’s the final problem with your argument: most lawyers hate their professions. While finance people also dislike what they do, they stay in it because ultimately it’s still at least somewhat more exciting / interesting… and even at the mid-levels you start to transition into more interesting work, whereas even at the Partner-level in law I would argue there’s more grunt work / boring tasks than what you see as a Partner or MD in finance.

      So in short: I agree that law can be lucrative, but it’s certainly not as lucrative as finance and the ceiling is way lower… what lawyer makes $1 billion+ in cash as John Paulson did a few years ago? True, he’s an outlier, but even if you look at average pay the average MD or Partner in finance will make more money than the average Partner in law… across all firm types and sizes, not just big law. I think the big shift is actually toward entrepreneurship / tech start-ups – which are increasingly pulling talent away from fields like law and finance.

      I don’t have IB numbers for Asia but at most large banks they are fairly standard worldwide. Pay can be higher in Asia sometimes because of FX differences, housing stipends, etc.

  8. Excellent material..
    I am from Audit and accounting background and wanted to go for a Masters in Finance. Will this increase my chances of getting through to IB industry? Or should I consider opting for an MBA. Please advise

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I think an MBA from a target might be more useful. The links below, I believe, should give you better insights:
      MBA – http://www.mergersandinquisitions.com/mba-investment-banking/
      Masters – http://www.mergersandinquisitions.com/investment-banking-masters-programs/

  9. Are the IB bonuses the average for staff in each year group, or the average for the best performing staff in each year group?

    1. Average for the best-performing staff. So overall pay is lower if you look at the median or average of the group.

  10. jack_bauer

    Was wondering what the HF/PE comp is based on. Is it for pre-MBA positions after a couple years of ibanking?

    Thanks

    1. It is an average taken across all front office investment roles. So Analyst/Associates on up to Partners. It is definitely weighted toward entry-level to mid-level roles because there are more of those. So, figure that the average pay is around what someone coming in from a few years of banking or from right after an MBA program would earn.

  11. good stuff. Forgot to mention pay at sell side are more or less stable because they have been reducing headcounts from 2007 so they can afford to slightly increase salary YoY even in a recession because they just lay ppl off and use part of that savings to increase pay modestly while most of the savings falls to the bottom line and the execs gets their nice bonus.

    1. That is a good point, although I don’t think there has been a big difference in headcount from 2008-2009 to present. It recovered a bit in 2010-early 2011, then declined in the past year.

  12. How would bonuses in ER compare to this? Similar to IB or hedge funds or lower than both?

    If you’re looking to move to a hedge fund later in your career would you say it’s best to start in IB or ER? Or does it just depend what the fund does

    1. Bonuses in ER are lower by quite a bit – see: http://www.mergersandinquisitions.com/equity-research-on-the-job/

      Even ER Research Analysts (the top level) only make around $300K all-in, maybe a bit more at large banks with solid teams, but nothing like banking MD pay.

      It really depends on what the fund does. ER can definitely work but IB gives you a broader skill set and makes funds with certain strategies (e.g. merger arbitrage) easier.

      1. I’d read the article before but it seems to suggest analysts receive $300k all in as a minimum package so it could go a lot higher?

        Also I’ve read before on here that IB gives a broader skill set, and I can see that in IB you’re getting transaction/deal experience where as in ER you’re not, however is that not offset by the market experience you get in ER that you don’t in IB? Are there other skills you pick up in IB which you don’t in ER? Thanks!

        1. I wouldn’t say it could go “a lot higher” – $1 million paydays would be almost impossible these days. Maybe up to $400-500K? Possibly.

          Your assessment is pretty much correct. However you also get a lot more exposure to institutional investors and sometimes management teams in ER, which helps with some buy-side roles.

  13. What about the salary ranges for Associates out of MBA programs?

    1. Those are harder to estimate because the range is wider and fewer people report data. A 1st year Associate might get around $200K all-in these days and as you move up the ladder it might move closer to $300-400K all-in as you get closer to the VP-level.

  14. oLYmPI@n

    Excellent post Brian.Although those $$$ signs are really tempting, what is the point telling us about these when those financial firms are not hiring anymore? Yeah maybe they are, but just hire one or two a year after they laid off 50.

    The financial industry is kind of hopeless, don’t you think? I seldom see any hiring posts from financial firms at any job boards but IT jobs are everywhere.

    1. The point is that we do a bonus prediction and analysis of the actual numbers every year, so it is just an ongoing feature and has been since 2008.

      The hiring/firing cycle is just the nature of the beast for any highly paid role that’s extremely performance-dependent. You see the same thing with C-level executives, movie stars, athletes, etc.

      Most readers understand that trade-off and would prefer to at least have a shot at advancing and earning a lot rather than ruling themselves out from the beginning.

  15. Nice visuals. IB skills applied so vividly=)

    1. The presentations department handled this one :)

  16. Random Monkey

    Some additional data points for you to consider. Certain BBs were paying 65k for first year top and 80k for second year top.

    1. Random Monkey

      sorry, meant 60k for first year top.

    2. Thanks for adding that. The numbers shown in the graph were just averages / roughly middle of the range for the numbers given this year.

  17. Hi, apologies in advance if this is a bit random. I graduated last year with an intention to go into IB, but ended up cofounding a startup that got vc-funded. However, due to some factors, I plan to leave soon and go back to the corporate world. What career options do I have? VC’s? Consulting? (I know IB is out of the question now right?)
    Thanks.

    1. Either of those, or even going to work at a normal company in the industry that your start-up was in. IB might be possible if you go for tech boutiques and spin a good story but you’re correct that your chances are lower now that you’re out of school and have done something else right after.

  18. Henderson

    i am not too interested in IB. i am much more interested in Equity Research and other finance related jobs involving the stock market. M&A combined with the long hours dont appeal to me. this may be a dumb question. but i havent heard much about internships for equity research. obviously i’m not seeking an internship right now but i was just curious about how hard it is to get some equity research experience under your belt. any other interesting stock market internships that could be considered? thanks! and one final question, i’m in Pittsburgh right now which is a decent sized financial city but if you want to go farther in HF, PE, etc. do you have to go to NYC, Toronto, or Chicago or is the city not as important?

    1. ER internships are very difficult to come by – easier to do something like HF/AM for an internship or even PWM and then move into ER. ER is very small so not many internship opportunities.

      NYC is by far the best bet for HF/PE opportunities. There are some jobs in other cities but Chicago tends to be more prop trading-focused and you don’t see as many hedge fund opportunities on the west coast for the most part.

      1. Henderson

        thanks for the response. how is the process for HF/AM internships? i know getting into HF is hard so is interning for them just as difficult? I would def. be interested in interning for either HF or AM but kinda unsure about the process and the probability of getting an internship in either field.

  19. Brian, are bonuses for sales and trading in the same range? What percentage of the IB bonuses would you estimate them at?

    1. At the junior levels (1st and 2nd year), yes, about the same range. As you move up they start to vary a lot more though because they become almost 100% performance-dependent. Traders who have been at it for 4-5 years will still make about the same or more as the average HF pay listed here but there’s more variability.

  20. Hey man what about europe?? can we have some more info about that? cheers

    1. Bonuses at large European banks are the same, but paid in GBP or EUR instead. So, $70K USD = roughly 45K GBP as of today. You can use historical currency conversions for the rest.

  21. How about UBS? A lot of analysts getting axed just before bonus. I bet the senior douchebags wanted higher bonuses but didnt know where to get them from.

    1. That’s a good point – not sure about reported numbers for UBS but I assume they were on the low-end here. UBS is broke in general so your assumption is probably correct.

  22. Brian,

    A quick question for you. I am currently a summer IB analyst but didn’t do much modelling for this summer, would that be a dealbreaker for the full time recruiting season when they asked about the summer experience?

    1. No but you will be at a disadvantage next to other people, so try to learn those skills however you can – that way at least you can admit that you didn’t get them during the internship but took the initiative to learn on your own and practice

      1. Thanks Brian. So on average, what is the percentage of summer interns actually get to do modelling work during the internship do you know?

        1. It is not super-common – maybe 25%? A lot of interns help with random Excel tasks like finding data on comps but few actually do “modeling work” because the full-time people handle most of that unless the group is under-staffed.

  23. great thx~~ very informative!

    1. Thanks! Glad you enjoyed.

  24. Tuition and “tees” seems to be a Typo!

    1. Yes thanks it is fixed. Please reload.

  25. Great Infographic….By any chance do you have similiar number for associates and/or VPs??

    1. I do not, but various firms do comp surveys. I would recommend the Job Search Digest compensation reports as they spend months on them each year and they are very high-quality.

  26. Very cool and inspiring! (think there’s a typo towards the bottom “average tuition and tees”)

    1. Yes thanks it is fixed. Please reload the page.

  27. Excellent presentation !!!

    Best yet !

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