by Brian DeChesare Comments (230)

How to Decide on Investment Banking Summer Internship Offers: Who Has a 97.5% Full-Time Offer Conversion Rate?

Investment Banking Summer Internship Offers: How to Decide

Yes, it’s that time of year again: You need to make a decision about summer internships.

Since recruiting is now hyper-accelerated, the decision-making process is also hyper-accelerated.

If you’re fortunate enough to receive multiple offers from banks, you’re in a very good position.

But instead of enjoying the moment, you’ll be tempted to go down the rabbit hole of analysis paralysis, even though the decision is usually simple.

We have covered this topic before, but recruiting has changed over the years, so I wanted to revisit and update this article:

So, What’s New?

First off, summer recruiting starts and ends insanely early – sometimes over a year before your internship begins (and it keeps moving up each year!).

As I write this in September, there’s a good chance you might have already decided on your internship for next year.

The timing is not quite as crazy outside the U.S., but recruiting has been moving up earlier in other regions as well.

So, you need to think about your goals long in advance. The bank and group where you complete your internship will determine where you work full-time, and your full-time role will determine your next job in 2-3 years.

Also, the concept of “rankings” is now a bit blurry because it is not always clear how elite boutiques and bulge brackets stack up, and some BB banks (the U.S.-based ones) are stronger than others (the European ones).

You could even make the case that a top industry or M&A group at a middle market bank or In-Between-a-Bank is better than, say, a capital markets group at a weaker bulge bracket bank.

Rankings still matter – in most cases, anything beats a regional boutique bank, and in most cases, a BB or EB offer beats a MM offer.

But deciding on an offer also depends on the specific group and the location in addition to the bank’s reputation.

Finally, it seems like fewer students are deciding between offers in very different locations, such as Hong Kong vs. New York vs. London.

That’s probably because the process has become so accelerated that it’s difficult to win offers in multiple regions at the same time.

The Ground Rules: What Matters

In no particular order, you should think about these factors when making a decision:

  • The People – Do you like everyone you met? Do you have a strong connection with someone senior there? Or does no one stand out?
  • The Location – It’s almost always better to start in a major financial center (NY, London, or HK) because there are more jobs and networking opportunities.
  • Bank Reputation – Is it at a bulge bracket, elite boutique, in-between-a-bank, middle market bank, or regional boutique? Within each group, is it upper or lower tier?
  • Group Reputation and Deal Flow – You stand a better chance of winning private equity roles if you work on M&A deals. And it’s tough to recruit for PE roles at all if you’re in an ECM or DCM group (LevFin is a bit easier if you do actual modeling work). It’s also tough to recruit if you don’t get much deal experience in your first few months.
  • Potential Exit Opportunities – How much of a generalist or specialist do you want to be? Certain groups, such as M&A and strong industry coverage groups, set you up for generalist buy-side roles, while others (capital markets) limit your choices or make you more specialized (FIG, Oil & Gas, Real Estate, Restructuring, etc.).
  • Opportunities Outside of Finance – If you want to work at a Fortune 100 company or do anything outside of finance in the future, you’ll have a better shot with a brand-name bank on your resume. Bulge bracket banks – even the “weaker ones” – are better known in the world at large than elite boutiques and other banks.

You should pick your offer based on the bank/group with the best reputation, deal flow, and people that best positions you for your long-term goals.

And if you don’t know what you want to do, pick the offer that keeps the most options open.

What Doesn’t Matter and What You Can’t Measure

Do NOT make a decision based on small differences in compensation, such as $2-5K; that might seem like an enormous amount as a student, but over a few years, it is nothing.

Also, don’t decide based on slight differences in reputation. If you spend five days contemplating GS TMT vs. MS M&A, you’re wasting your time.

Finally, the full-time offer conversion rate should not be a huge factor because there’s so much bad information about this point online.

Yes, JonSnow666 claims that 45% of interns at Bank X receive full-time offers… but where does that number come from? Who is this person? Is it just a high-school or first-year university student?

The Cold, Harsh Truth About Your Decision

Picking the “right” summer offer only helps you so much because factors outside your immediate control also impact the outcome.

For example, the top MD in your group might leave and take half the team with him. Or deal flow might slow to a trickle in your sector. Or the firm might cut its full-time hiring, making the conversion rate far worse.

Also, your goals may change; you might start the internship being 99% certain you want to follow the IB-to-PE path, but then realize midway through that you hate the work.

So, you shouldn’t spend days obsessing over the decision if you’re lucky enough to receive multiple offers.

Here are some examples of how you might decide without overthinking it:

JPM Healthcare (NY) vs. Evercore M&A (NY)

Both banks/groups have similar reputations and exit opportunities, and both offers are in the same location, so this one comes down to the people and whether you prefer a smaller or larger bank.

For example, if you have a great connection with someone senior at the JPM, it could make sense to accept the JPM offer even if you’re not certain you want to do healthcare.

The JPM offer might also make more sense if you want to leave finance eventually.

On the other hand, Evercore might be better if you want to stay in IB for the long term.

MS Capital Markets (NY) vs. HLHZ M&A (NY)

Capital markets groups are not ideal for private equity exits, but the Morgan Stanley offer is still better because of its overall brand name vs. the brand name of any middle market bank.

To maximize your chances in PE recruiting, you would have to move into the Leveraged Finance team, M&A team, or a solid industry group.

But it’s often easier to switch teams at the same bank than to move from a smaller bank to a larger one.

Moelis Restructuring (NY) vs. BAML Industrials (NY)

Both groups are quite strong and have solid exit opportunities, so this one depends on whether or not you want to specialize in restructuring/distressed deals.

If you do, the Moelis offer is better.

If not, BAML is better since it keeps more options open for you.

UBS Capital Markets (NY) vs. Jefferies TMT (SF)

UBS is, technically, a “bulge bracket bank,” but it has moved away from investment banking over time, especially in the U.S. (it still ranks highly in Asia and Europe).

So, I would recommend Jefferies in this case, especially if you want a traditional PE exit.

While SF has fewer total opportunities than NY, there are tons of tech-focused funds and other tech opportunities there that match up perfectly with TMT experience.

I might change this recommendation if the UBS offer were in a non-capital-markets group.

Citi Oil & Gas (Houston) vs. Credit Suisse M&A (NY)

This one depends on how much you want to specialize because oil & gas is very specialized.

If you join an O&G group in Houston, it will be very difficult to win non-energy exit opportunities.

So, if you’re very certain you want to specialize in energy, go with Citi. If you want to keep your options open, go with CS.

Rothschild M&A (London) vs. PJT Partners Restructuring (London)

This one is close to a toss-up since the locations are the same and the banks’ reputations are similar, so you should decide based on your interest in Restructuring.

If you’re sure you want to go down that path, PJT is better; if not, Rothschild is better.

But if you have a great senior contact at PJT who can ensure that you get solid experience, PJT might win out even if you don’t want to work on restructuring/distressed deals long term.

Harris Williams M&A (NY) vs. Lazard M&A (SF)

The NY location is an advantage for Harris Williams, but Lazard still has the better brand name and reputation, which outweighs the location difference.

Wells Fargo Industrials (Charlotte) vs. BMO Metals & Mining (NY)

People say that Wells Fargo’s strength lies in its Balance Sheet, and that’s true, but it also has solid industry coverage groups, including the Industrials team.

Metals & Mining is probably the best group at BMO, and the NY location is better than Charlotte, but it’s also a lot more specialized than Industrials.

So, I would give the edge to Wells Fargo unless you’re 100% set on natural resource-related roles in the future.

GS (No Group Specified) (London) vs. JPM (No Group Specified) (London)

This one is a toss-up if the locations are the same and you don’t know which group you’ll be in.

If there are no differences in the people, you might as well flip a coin.

RBC M&A (NY) vs. Credit Suisse Capital Markets (HK)

Who in their right mind would pick RBC over CS?!! This one’s easy!

Well… not so fast.

If these were the same groups in the same location, I would agree, but if you want to stay in the U.S. and aim for traditional exit opportunities there, I would argue that RBC is a better bet because of its location and deal focus.

If you want to stay in Asia or you do not care as much about PE exits, CS is better.

Deutsche Bank (NY) vs. Evercore (NY) vs. Guggenheim (NY) (No Group Specified)

My ranking here would be Evercore, DB, and Guggenheim based solely on the brand names and reputation.

If the offer were in one of the top groups at DB, I might rank it above Evercore, depending on how well it matches up with your long-term goals.

Rank the Banks?

I’m exhausted typing out all those decisions above, so I’ll stop here.

If you have questions about how to decide between multiple offers, leave your inquiries below.

And if you really can’t decide, flip a coin and be glad you have a summer internship offer at all.

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. How about DB Transaction Banking (full-time return offer) vs JPM Treasury summer internship (transaction banking equivalent) both in HK?

    Would love to hear your thoughts Brian! Thanks for answering.

  2. Avatar

    DB NYC (LevFin) or RBC M&A/LevFin — DB’s LevFin is still very strong but am worried about the future and prestige for exit opps/lateral.

    1. I would still pick DB if your main concern is future opportunities. RBC might be better if your main concern is receiving a full-time offer since the DB situation is much less stable / and DB is declining while RBC is growing.

  3. Hi Brian,

    Thanks for making this. What’s your thoughts on UBS vs DB vs Jefferies. All in NYC.

    1. If it’s one of the top groups at Jefferies, such as Healthcare, you’re probably better off there (same if it’s industry or M&A there vs. ECM/DCM at UBS or DB). But for a generalist assignment or cases where the group is about the same in terms of deal flow/exit opportunities, DB is still probably slightly better than UBS and Jefferies… even with the weakened state of European banks.

      1. Thanks for the response, Brian. If I were to add Perella Weinberg into this mix, would you still recommend Jefferies?

        1. In that case, I would probably accept PWP since most people consider them an “elite boutique,” and since most people would say that an EB beats lower-tier BBs as well as MM firms (

  4. Hey Brian, post MBA IB: MS Generalist (London), Citi Healthcare (London), JPM Consumer (NY), Evercore M&A (NY). Intend to stay in finance/ transition to PE and care about prestige and learning.

    1. Those are all great options, but I would say JPM Consumer (NY) is best because it’s a fairly broad group, NY currently beats London due to the Euro area slowdown and Brexit uncertainty, and JPM is better than Evercore if you ever change your mind and decide to leave finance.

  5. Hi Brian – I had a question regarding these three offers. Centerview SF Generalist vs Centerview Palo Alto Tech vs MS Menlo Tech (Probably coverage maybe M&A). I like technology, and while the generalist program in SF gives some exposure to tech it might be a more rounded experience. PE/VC is probably the goal. Thanks a ton, you’re always a great help.

    1. They’re both good, but MS has the stronger brand name outside of finance. So it depends on what you value more: optionality outside of finance careers, or the learning/deal experience and culture.

      Either one would work well for exit opportunities, but you might have a slight advantage at MS because of the brand name.

  6. Hi Brian,

    Great post. I am an MBA student and have been fortunate to receive summer internship offers from MS (Generalist) vs. JPM (Technology) vs. Evercore (M&A). I know it is difficult to get into PE, but if I were to try, which do you think would provide the best opportunity?

    At MS, I would try to place in M&A, Media & Communications, or Technology.

    Thank you,

    1. MS or JPM would both be good, not sure there’s a clear winner or way to decide there. Evercore would be good at the undergraduate level, but it’s usually tougher to move into PE from an elite boutique post-MBA role.

  7. GS summer internship vs BNP Paribas full-time offer (both London)?

    Is the prestige differential such that it would be worth dismissing the security of a full-time offer at BNP to try and secure a full-time at GS via the internship?

    What would you do?

    1. I would still pick GS in this case because if you do not win a full-time return offer there, you could always recruit for other banks that are below GS in terms of reputation.

      But if you go to BNP, you’ll have to wait 6-12 months to network and start recruiting at other banks, assuming you want to move to GS/MS/JPM or similar. And it’s generally more difficult to recruit for lateral roles there than it is to convert a summer internship.

      So… maybe not a clear-cut decision, but I would still lean toward the GS offer.

      1. At what point (IE ranking/prestige of bank) would you give up the GS SA offer for a full time offer?

        To give a few examples:

        – Jefferies FT or GS Summer?
        – HL FT or GS Summer?
        – Would you take a GS Summer over any BB FT offers? (obviously not MS/JP but how about the others?)

        1. Any BB or EB FT offer is worth accepting over a GS SA offer since they are roughly the same level (yes, OK, you can argue that GS/MS/JPM are ahead of the others, etc., but they’re still not that much different).

          But if it’s an FT offer at a MM bank or regional boutique or something like that, then you should probably accept the GS SA offer, knowing that you could always go back and recruit for those other smaller banks if you don’t win a full-time return offer at GS.

          BNP is obviously not a MM or regional boutique bank, but it’s also not in the EB/BB category, so by default, it’s still probably better to take the GS summer offer.

  8. Hi Brian, I’m choosing between internship offers in London:

    RBC vs Harris Williams vs DB.

    Heard RBC have been doing well recently, obviously DB is not but it is still a BB. HW do a lot of work with sponsors and I’ve heard have decent analyst placement into MM PE firms, however not confident in their Europe prestige.

    Main concern would be converting to FT (could be potential problem for DB), and maybe after the internship moving to a top BB/EB. And also full-time salary, prestige and exit ops to PE.

    1. Tough one, but I would probably go with RBC if your main concern is winning a FT offer just because the DB situation is currently unstable/unclear what’s going to happen next. RBC is worse for PE recruiting, but unlike DB, it is growing its IB franchise. And you could easily move from there to a BB/EB after.

      1. Thanks Brian, really helpful. And I guess there’s no contest between RBC and HW?

        Can I also throw HL into the mix (M&A only, not Rx). How do they compare to RBC in London?

        1. I think they’re both solid options, but RBC is stronger in Europe. For what it’s worth, DB has much more deal volume than RBC in Europe, but there is higher risk of not getting a FT offer there. HL appears to have more deal volume and more of a presence than RBC in London. So, even if it’s an M&A offer and not Rx, you might be better off with HL.

  9. Hi Brian, have some tough choices. JPM Markets vs UBS Markets vs Santander DCM or Fixed Income Sales & Trading vs BNP FIC vs BNP Markets. All NYC opportunities. Future career direction in HF, AM, Startup and Corporates outside of Finance…I want to sign with JPM but have some concerns in regards to its low return rate and culture. Thanks.

    1. Without knowing much about those (we don’t track S&T that closely here, just the occasional article), I would say JPM is your best bet. I don’t know, even if the return offer rate is lower than the others, I don’t think it’s a great idea to accept UBS, Santander, or BNP over JPM in the current environment. Maybe if it were something like JPM vs. Citi or CS, and you knew the return offer rate was much higher at Citi or C, sure.

      Look at it this way: even if you don’t like it or don’t get a return offer from JPM, you can probably take the internship and recruit for roles at any of those other banks… but it would be difficult to do the reverse.

      1. Hi Brian, really appreciate ur help. I talked to one senior in JPM and he mentioned the return rate was around 70-75%. Is it a good number?

        1. Yes, that is a high return offer rate.

  10. Avatar
    John Johnson

    JP Morgan IB NY (generalist) vs. Evercore Life Sciences (Menlo Park) … have an interest in healthcare

    1. I would still pick JPM in this case because healthcare is not that specialized (so no bonus points for working in a specialized group the same way it works for FIG or Energy), and you leave open more options by going to a generalist role in case you ever change your mind. If you join a life science-specific team in a smaller office, you’ll limit yourself more to healthcare opportunities in that area.

  11. Hi Brian,

    I was fortunate to receive offers from both MS and EVR in the SA 2020 recruiting cycle and had a difficult time making a decision. In the end, I signed with EVR as I felt a closer connection to networking contacts there and believed it to be a strong cultural fit for me. While I can’t go back and change my decision, I’ve begun to doubt picking EVR as I’ve received considerable pushback from people close to me (family – no finance background & love MS name, close friends also pursuing IB, fellow club members, etc.) How would you think about SA offers at EVR (M&A) vs. MS (assume C/R, Transpo, Industrials placement) on exits, prestige, culture, analyst camaraderie, etc.?


    1. Again, it’s a pretty simple decision: do you want to stay in IB or other finance roles for the long term? If so, then Evercore is the same or better than MS (probably better if you want to stay in IB long term).

      If not, and you are interested in working at normal companies in the future, then MS is better because it’s a more widely known name outside of finance. I wouldn’t go by family with no finance background as they don’t know enough about the hiring market to say anything useful.

  12. Hi Brian,

    I have offers from Rothschild (FT, London) vs BAML (FT, London). Any advice on which one to pick?


    1. Tough one since Rothschild is effectively an elite boutique in Europe. So I think this one comes down to the normal rule – do you want to stay in IB/PE for the long term? If so, go with Rothschild. If you’re potentially interested in normal companies, startups, or anything outside of finance, BAML is probably better due to the brand name and reputation elsewhere.

  13. harris williams food and bev (minneapolis), mizuho healthcare (NY), stephens consumer (ny), cantor fitzgerald (ny). not 100% sure but thinking PE long term as of now

    1. That is a tough one. The NY-based opportunities are definitely better for PE, but I don’t know if there’s a huge difference reputation-wise between those 3. So I would probably decide based on the people in each team, as consumer and healthcare are both good if you want to move into PE.

  14. I’m interested in PE for long term. In short term, I have offers from JPM (NY) no group specified yet or PJ Solomon (NY) in M&A.

    1. I would go with JPM here since PJ Solomon, while a good firm, is not really in the same class as the BB and EB banks.

  15. How hard is it to recruit traditional PE (east coast) from GS TMT SF?

    1. It’s doable, but more difficult than if you were based in NY just because of timing and the need for live interviews. Most people who end up at the PE mega-funds in NY are working at banks in NY.

  16. HI, brian

    Was just wondering how to choose between the following: Rothschild M&A (Lon), CS (Lon) (no group specified, preferably M&A within IBCM) and BAML M&A (Lon) for SA positions?

    Am unsure about based on conversion rate to FT Analyst in London/ exit prospects from each.understand that the BBS are prestigious but rothschild seems to be doing vry well iin the Europe m&a space.


    1. If you want to stay in finance long term, I would probably pick Rothschild because of its strength in Europe, where it’s essentially an elite boutique. If not, BAML and CS in London are pretty similar. But if BAML already said you’ll be in M&A for sure, that might be better than taking the risk of picking CS and not getting the group you want.

      1. what do you mean by in finance – is this about remaining in ibd for the long term or also talking about other exit areas of finance e.g. PE (or are u suggesting the BBs are better for this)

  17. Greenhill or Guggenheim or Citi ?

    1. Are they all in the same place and for the same group? If so, I would probably pick Citi if you’re not sure what you want to do long-term. If you want to stay in IB, one of the boutiques might be better. Greenhill has had issues recently, but overall it’s probably still a bit ahead of Guggenheim.

  18. Moelis NY, MS Generalist, or Bank of America Lev Fin NY

    1. I would probably go with MS Generalist because MS has the best brand name, especially outside of finance, and so you’ll have the most options for both finance and non-finance exits. But you can’t go wrong with any of these, so if your long-term goal is IB, maybe Moelis is better (assuming you can survive the culture/hours there…).

  19. Guggenheim IB v. MS IB v. MS cap markets

    1. I would definitely pick MS IB here because IB almost always beats capital markets (at least in terms of exit opportunities and assuming you don’t care about a better lifestyle), and MS has a better brand/name than Guggenheim.

  20. Evercore M&A NY vs Guggenheim M&A NY

    Also, very confused about why Guggenheim seems to have entirely conflicting information out there on how good it is for exit opps – they do extremely high profile deals and seem like they should be considered a lot better than they are. Is this because of huge (relative to EBs) analyst class size/generally less desirable analysts for whatever reason? And is Guggenheim considered an EB?

    1. I would pick Evercore simply because there is so much conflicting information about Guggenheim. From what I can tell, they do provide solid exit opportunities but they seem to be more “random” than what you see at other banks. I would guess it has something to do with the large class size and the variable analyst quality. Debatable whether or not Guggenheim is an elite boutique, some would say yes, others no, but I don’t really think it’s in the same “tier” as Evercore/Lazard/Moelis (I hate ranking banks, but you get the idea).

  21. Hi Brian,

    How would you choose on DB (M&A) vs Rothschild (generalist) vs Evercore in Continental Europe (Germany)

    1. These days, avoid DB at all costs, so Rothschild or Evercore would be better. I believe Rothschild might have the advantage in Europe but not 100% certain about Germany specifically.

  22. PJ Solomon Generalist (NY) vs Financo Retail (NY)

    1. I would probably go with PJ Solomon here because it’s bigger and better-known, and I’m not sure the retail focus of Financo is great at the moment with the state of the retail industry.

  23. Avatar
    Keelan Winters

    Ms London Fig (focus on fintech) Vs JPM Chicago (Industrials

    1. I would go with JPM Chicago here because the industry group is broader and you won’t be pigeonholed as easily in terms of exit opportunities.

  24. Hi Brian!

    I am deciding between DB and Jefferies (Both in NYC). I am still unsure which group I would be in, but I have a strong connection with someone senior at DB which could help me land a better group.

    1. Tough one, but I would probably lean toward Jefferies just because there’s a decent chance that DB breaks up, merges, or otherwise goes through big structural changes, which is never a good sign. It may not matter if you don’t want to stay there long term, but there seem to be rumors about this happening every day…

  25. Centerview Palo Alto (Tech M&A) vs. BAML Palo Alto (Tech Coverage) vs. DB Sponsors (SF)
    Could you take a look at this? I think it’s an interesting decision given the EB vs BB difference, and also given that BAML separates M&A and coverage in their PAL tech group, while the sponsors group arguably being good for exits.

    1. I would probably pick Centerview in that case because it’s arguably just as strong as BAML for finance exit opportunities, and tech M&A is a bit better than tech coverage. I would be worried about DB’s solvency at this stage, and Sponsors is not necessarily the best group for all exits.

      The only reason to pick BAML instead is if you are more interested in exit opportunities like corporate finance/development at normal companies.

  26. Avatar

    MKlein & Co (NYC) vs William Blair (Chic)

    1. I would go with William Blair. MKlein is in the “up-and-coming potential elite boutique” category but hasn’t been around long enough to prove itself yet…. despite some high-profile deals.

    2. GS TMT SF vs Moelis NY vs BAML Sponsors NY

      1. Tough one… but I would probably go with Moelis if you want to be a generalist and target a wide range of PE funds or other PE/HF exits, but GS TMT SF if you want to recruit for startups/VC/tech-focused PE (e.g., Silver Lake) or growth equity.

  27. Hi, I’m a sophomore undergraduate in HK. I’m aiming at HF eventually.
    Now considering several opportunities for this summer. How should I rank these offers?
    I would like to maximise my chance to land an investment banking or equity research or even a HF intern directly next summer. I am not sure if going from S&T to HF is possible, if yes, then i’m more interested in S&T than IBD cuz I like secondary markets more.

    1. Wells Fargo CIB FIG (should be doing traditional banking instead of investment banking coverage)
    2. ING Bank DCM
    3. Santander Trading
    4. Invesco Multi Asset Research

    Thanks so much

    1. I don’t really know what to tell you because you’re asking about 3 different fields – IB, ER, and HFs are all different and the best offer depends on which one you want to pursue.

      If you want to do S&T, take the Santander Trading offer. If you want to do IB, probably the ING Bank DCM offer. If you want to go into a hedge fund directly next summer, the Invesco offer.

  28. Avatar
    Dhruv Raj

    JPM Chicago- Industrials vs MS- NYC- FIG

    I feel like NYC gives more opportunities but FIG definitely pigeon holes you

    1. I would definitely go with JPM Chicago unless you really want to be in FIG long term. Otherwise, it’s too easy to get pigeonholed, especially since most headhunters don’t understand that not everything in FIG has specialized accounting/valuation.

  29. Barclays Generalist IB (NY) v. Perella Weinberg M&A (NY) v. Citi Tech (SF)? Looking for best exits (regardless of industry focus/location)


    Accepting an offer from one of the aforementioned banks or declining and waiting for Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JPM to start their processes?

    1. I would say Citi Tech (SF) is probably your best bet, but Barclays might be better for non-tech or non-west-coast roles. If you have those 3 offers, I don’t think it’s a great idea to decline and then wait for GS/MS/JPM to begin their processes. Yes, they’re “better,” but the recruiting process is very random and 3 banks is not a large sample size.

  30. BAML Healthcare (NY) vs Perella Weinberg Healthcare (NY) vs Perella Weinberg Healthcare (SF)

    1. I would say BAML because it’s a bigger firm with more of a brand name outside finance… and NY tends to beat SF unless you want to focus on tech.

  31. Moelis (NY) v. Lazard (NY) v. Guggenheim (NY)?

    1. Tough one. Moelis and Lazard are about the same, so I would just based this on the people/team.

  32. Hi Brian,
    Have summer analysts offers at both Greenhill (Generalist, London) and Credit Suisse (FSG & LevFin or TMT, London).
    Which one should I pick? I am confused

    1. I would probably go with CS in the LevFin or TMT teams because they’re the most “general.” Greenhill might be better if your long-term goal is IB.

  33. BAML SF TMT vs MS Chicago Industrials

    1. Tough one. I think it comes down to where you want to be long term… if you want to be on the west coast, BAML SF, if you want to be on the east coast/NY, MS Chicago is a better option.

  34. Uncertain between summer offers: GS S&T London (rotation in rates, FX, EM, and equity derivatives) vs JPM M&A London. Which should I choose given that I want to join a hedge fund and become a PM there? I know before 2008 S&T would have been the clear answer but now that it is mostly market making and that recruiting for HFs has shifted in favor of IB I really do not know which one I should
    choose. Can you help?

    1. I’d say it really depends on what you want to do at the hedge fund: execution trading or investment analysis? If you want to be a trader, go with the S&T offer. Yes, S&T has gotten worse over the years (see our recently updated articles on Equities and Fixed Income), but it’s still the best way to win trading roles at HFs. If you want to do fundamental or event-driven analysis, the IB offer is better. Plenty of traders still move into hedge funds even though the industries have declined.

  35. Hey Brian! I am deciding between three full time offers in London. Which one would you pick between Moelis and Lazard (both mixture of restructuring and M&A) and JP Morgan M&A. I am very interested in distressed and restructuring but not 100% sure yet. Does JPM have a significant brand name advantage over Moelis and Lazard. How does Lazard stack up to Moelis in London. Which bank has the best exit opps among those three. I am 100% sure I want to stay in finance but outside of IB, just do not know if I want to join a HF or a PE firm. I am not interested in corporate development or any other type of exit opp.
    To me the biggest unknown seems to be Moelis London, when speaking to fellow classmates it seems clear that JP>Lazard, however when mentioning Moelis some people claim it is the best among the three while others rank it as the worst. What is the truth? How are the exit opps there?

    1. If you are certain you want to stay in finance, then JPM doesn’t really offer advantages over elite boutiques. I don’t know offhand how Lazard and Moelis compare in London, but I believe Lazard has always been strong in EMEA while Moelis is newer. Looking at the EMEA M&A league tables, Lazard is in the top 5, beating many BBs, while Moelis doesn’t appear in the top 20.

      That’s not conclusive evidence, but it’s a pretty good sign that Lazard has more overall deal flow in Europe than Moelis, meaning the exit opportunities are likely better. But, overall, JPM still wins for exit opportunities because of the brand name outside finance, the networking, and the broad options from it.

  36. Avatar
    Jeremy Lee

    Deciding between Citi, CS, and Barclays generalist IBD summer offers. Prioritizing exit ops into PE. Leaning CS but what are your thoughts?

    1. That is a tough one, but if these offers are in NY, I would probably lean toward Citi because U.S.-based banks have performed better than European ones overall and still tend to give better access to exit opportunities.

  37. William Blair Chicago vs Rotschild NY vs Guggenheim NY

    1. I would probably pick Guggenheim NY due to the location and somewhat better access to recruiters/exit opportunities. Rothschild might be better if you were in London.

  38. Any thoughts on Guggenheim NY vs BMO Chicago for summer associate? Really liked the people at BMO Chicago but not sure if I would be giving up a better opportunity at Guggenheim NY.

    1. I would go with Guggenheim because it should give you better exit opportunities… maybe not a huge difference over BMO, but significant enough to notice.

  39. Avatar
    Henry hernandez


    Been following your writings on M&I for a good while now – thank you for putting out quality content.

    I’m considering two offers for summer associate roles (MBA): Wells fargo & RBC Capital markets

    Wells Fargo is a platform offer, followed by a sell-day in charlotte. there is alot of ambiguity here because i may be placed in either charlotte or NYC, and can be any just about any product or coverage group.

    RBC Capital markets is for a generalist role in NYC) however, i have a good relationship with an alumni banker here who’s got good tenure in M&A – and will pull me into this team post summer should a full time offer come through.

    At this point, i’m not sure if I will be a lifetime banker, but i’m not ruling that out. I know PE recruiting post MBA is very tough, but I may try to pave a way there too eventually.

    What would you advise? what do you think is the better offer?

    1. I would probably go with RBC because certainty over being placed in M&A in NY beats possible placement in some other team in Charlotte. People claim the RBC exit opportunities are “bad,” but I’m skeptical of that claim (RBC has improved over the past few years, and you can still get into PE from there). I’m not sure there’s a huge difference vs. exit opportunities from Wells Fargo in Charlotte.

  40. For MBA recruiting (summer associate): Morgan Stanley (NY-generalist) vs. Lazard (NY-TMT)?

    1. I would probably pick MS because it gives you more options if you want to do something outside of finance in the future.

  41. Guggenheim (generalist NY) vs Rothschild (generalist NY)?

    Thank you

    1. Close one, but I would probably go with Rothschild, at least if you’re interested in M&A or potentially Restructuring. But I don’t know that there’s a huge difference, and online reputations seem similar.

  42. Avatar
    Grace Xiang

    BAML London (M&A) vs Citi Houston (energy).

    From a geographic perspective, I think the American opportunity is better but M&A is more interesting to me than energy- would appreciate any help

    1. If you don’t want to specialize in energy, pick BAML London because energy is difficult to get out of once you’ve started down that path.

  43. Avatar
    Mizar Alvarado

    MS LatAm (NY) vs CS LatAm (NY) ?
    LatAm rankings change every year, and brand name in the region is not that important. But, assuming: (i) this is an MBA internship and I will graduate from a top b-school; (ii) I want to stay in the US from the long-term (finance industry but not necessarily in IB); (iii) I like people at both teams; (iv) MS has a leaner team (more responsibilities and client exposure as an associate) and CS has a bigger team and more senior bankers to learn from; (v) MS does more cross-border and advises buyside (PE) whereas CS is more wealthy families-oriented (and I like the former better).

    1. I would say MS is slightly better in this case due to name/reputation, smaller team, and more traditional IB work.

  44. GS Chicago-Industrials IB chic vs CS IB TMT nyc

    I am attracted towards GS name and group but feel like nyc is better for exits. What would you advise? Thanks

    1. Tough one, but I would probably pick GS Chicago for the better name. It will still be feasible to interview for NY-based roles from Chicago (it’s easier than interviewing for NY roles when you’re on the west coast).

  45. UBS Generalist (Frankfurt) or CS (London, no group specified yet)

    Not sure regarding the influence of Brexit on conversion rate of Interns to FT Analysts in London.

    1. I would pick CS London because it’s always better to start out in a financial center if you can. Yes, Brexit may change things long term, but not in the immediate future.

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