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Investment banking and finance field?

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Augustus Medici, Apr 25, 2006.

  1. Augustus Medici

    Augustus Medici Senior member

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    Hey all, I'm a new member here so please forgive me. I'm currently just an undergraduate double-majoring in economics and finance. I should graduate by this time next year. Anybody here involved in these fields care to share some advice in regards to how to go about getting a job in an investment bank? I was thinking more along the lines of Goldman Sachs or PIMCO or something like that. Honestly, I just want lots of money [​IMG] Any help would be much appreciated!
     
  2. Margaret

    Margaret Senior member

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    Well, As are a good start.
     
  3. Martinis at 8

    Martinis at 8 Senior member

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    Do you know how an investment banker makes his money?

    M8
     
  4. Lucky Strike

    Lucky Strike Senior member

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    Do you know the collective noun for a group of bankers?[​IMG]
     
  5. Fuuma

    Fuuma Senior member

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    Do you know the collective noun for a group of bankers?[​IMG]

    Hey no crass reference to female genitalia on the forum, we're above that. [​IMG]
     
  6. pdizzle

    pdizzle Member

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    given my (limited) experience with the banks here in Australia - its a matter of satisfying academic criteria, and then all about the interviews...

    Do you know which area you want to go to? Because thats a start... Echoing M8, undergrads talk about Investment Banks as mythical institutions that gurantee prosperity, without understanding what the work invovles...

    PDiz
     
  7. Lucky Strike

    Lucky Strike Senior member

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    Hey no crass reference to female genitalia on the forum, we're above that. [​IMG]
    Hmh?
     
  8. Morris

    Morris Senior member

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    Hey all, I'm a new member here so please forgive me. I'm currently just an undergraduate double-majoring in economics and finance. I should graduate by this time next year. Anybody here involved in these fields care to share some advice in regards to how to go about getting a job in an investment bank? I was thinking more along the lines of Goldman Sachs or PIMCO or something like that. Honestly, I just want lots of money [​IMG] Any help would be much appreciated!

    Prior to speaking with any bankers you must do your diligence. Your best bet is to do the following:

    1. Assuming you do not have relatives in IB, start with your career planning office. Determine whether recent alumni have entered IB and contact them about their experience as analysts.

    2. Take a look at: http://www.wetfeet.com/Content/Caree...20Banking.aspx. This a career site where you can learn more about IB and has guides as well as message boards.

    3. Next read any of the following:
    - Monkey Business (very realistic perspective of IB)
    - Predator's Ball
    - Buffett - The Making of an American Capitalist
    - When Genius Failed
    - Liar's Poker
    - FIASCO
    - Greed and Glory on Wall Street
    - eBoys - Benchmark Capital Partners
    - Big Deal

    4. Rent "Wall Street" and "Barbarians at the Gate".

    This will give you the fundamental background to begin asking intelligent questions of bankers. More importantly, you may realize that IB is very different than what you initially perceived it to be and you may look at other career paths.

    Above all else, it's a job (many better, many worse). If you are looking at it for the money, then you are a fool. On a dollar per hour worked basis, the homeless make more.
     
  9. Pennglock

    Pennglock Senior member

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    If you go to a top school and have a great GPA, all that's left is to ace the interview. Sell yourself. Know why you want to be a banker, and know why you want to work at their firm. They're looking for kids with a lot of drive and a passion for analytic work. Make sure that comes through in your interview. It's also important that you give them a "competent" vibe- have them come away knowing you're not the kind of person to drop the ball.

    Be ready for a grilling of your financial knowledge, too. Know how the financial statements flow into each other, know how to value stock and bonds, and be ready to do a DCF. If you're interview for M&A, be ready to talk about a recent deal you found interesting.

    I think it also helps to have a few people inside the bank pulling for you, even if they're junior. Call or email their recruiting contact for your school, and ask if there are any alumni willing to talk to you. It shows your interest, and you'll learn a lot of things from talking to them.

    The main thing is, get your story down and sell it to them. Lots of people get good grades and can answer their quantitative questions. People who get hired are the ones who convince the interviews theyre in the right place.
     
  10. Lucky Strike

    Lucky Strike Senior member

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    Do you know the collective noun for a group of bankers?[​IMG]
    Wunch. A wunch of bankers. Is "wunch" a crass reference to female genitalia?
     
  11. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    As was already mentioned, best entry point will always be your school team at the bank(s). Of course, top grades, interesting curricular and extra-curricular activities, and solid understanding of the basic finance and accounting concepts are necessary. What makes a difference is showing your drive and desire to go through the hell of working as an analyst on the street because you understand the rewards are worth the suffering. You need to be convinced that working 100+ hours a week for a couple of years is OK and will help lay the foundation of your career in finance. If you are not convinced yourself, it will be hard to be convincing and stand out of the crowd of applicants.

    Also, if you're graduating next year, I don't understand why you have not pursued a summer internship on the street for this coming summer (or have you?). It's the perfect introduction and the simplest way to get a full time job offer
     
  12. pdizzle

    pdizzle Member

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    Out of interest - any one here working in investment banking or markets?
     
  13. Spencer Young

    Spencer Young Senior member

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    A few of my friends are going into ibanking (we graduate in a few weeks). If you have the option, take the Training the Street courses that might be offered at your school (they're an organization that goes around teaching ibanking skills). They'll help you get into the excel modelling and terminology. Also, be persistant. I know Goldman Sachs has an early apply option, where you might have a job lined up by July *before* your senior year. My friend failed that, tried again, failed, and tried again - he finally got in. All other advice given here is quite solid, as well. Just be sure you know what you're getting into.
     
  14. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    Out of interest - any one here working in investment banking or markets?

    I work in investment banking
     
  15. vc2000

    vc2000 Senior member

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    I'm not an i banker I just employ many of them. [​IMG]

    I hope you at least have some passion or interest in the field? Too many people have tried to go into the field for the money. And they very poor at it. The hours will be long, the projects dull, and working for people like me will be a real pain. I'm not sure what the churn/burn rate is in the industry but it has to be high. Perhaps somebody in the field could address this. That is why they high all those new graduates - to abuse them and then toss them out for a new crop.

    Now that you have had your dose of medicine. The best route in is probably through an internship program. Even if you have to delay graduation to do an internship - do it to get into the field.
     
  16. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    That is why they high all those new graduates - to abuse them and then toss them out for a new crop.

    That's a harsh statement. Being in the field and supervising young graduates (analysts and associates), I can tell you that is not why we hire people. It is true that the hours can sometimes be very difficult, but that's only because our clients require quick turnaround in advisory or capital-raising transactions. Wall St lawyers have similar experiences and that's unfortunately part of the job. Fortunately, we (and others like you) do a pretty good job at warning young graduates that although it's an extremely exciting and rewarding job, it generally requires a tremendous time commitment.
     
  17. vc2000

    vc2000 Senior member

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    That's a harsh statement. Being in the field and supervising young graduates (analysts and associates), I can tell you that is not why we hire people. It is true that the hours can sometimes be very difficult, but that's only because our clients require quick turnaround in advisory or capital-raising transactions. Wall St lawyers have similar experiences and that's unfortunately part of the job. Fortunately, we (and others like you) do a pretty good job at warning young graduates that although it's an extremely exciting and rewarding job, it generally requires a tremendous time commitment.

    Touche My verbage was perhaps too strong. Regrets if I offended.

    I would just comment that if you don't at least like the field it will feel something similar to .... The large paycheck won't compensate for the consumption of your entire life. You have to get something more out of the experience. I did the law firm route, I enjoyed while I did it but it was all encompassing. I remember when I did the interview they proudly told me the copy/printing center was open 24/7. Guess who drove that center? I remember them asking what cereal I liked and it being on the shelf the next day. Eating all my meals at my desk in the office. Working until 6AM going home for a shower and returning for a 9AM conference... The dry cleaning was deliveried to the office as was my mail. A break on Saturday night was taking half an hour to pay my bills. I couldn't keep a plant alive let alone a relationship. I lived the billable hours life.

    No the experience can be good. It just requires a lot of trade offs. I thought when I went into it I knew was I was getting into but I didn't. For me the upside was that I saved a lot of $ which allowed me to start my own business when I left. I also had a tremendous amount of experience which I applied to my business.

    I'm not a person to regret much in life. Not something I reflect upon much but I certainly didn't have an active social life during those days. It might have been fun but it wasn't to be.

    Today I probably work as many hours when I am on the road and maybe 12-14 hours when I am in the office. Both seems like cake walks to those first days. I have learned to delegate and pace myself. Plus I am in control of what I do so if I don't like something I let somebody else do it. And finally I see all the profit from my work.

    Best of luck to you in the i banking field and the new grads. I'm probably just a grumpy old man. It has rained here for three days on my vacation.
     
  18. gdl203

    gdl203 Senior member Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    No offense taken. I agree it is a trade-off. Some consider the skills and work ethics learned in their Wall St years as a great foundation for their career, some may view it as wasted years. I agree with many of your points and would also urge any young graduate to speak with people in the industry and understand fully what lifestyle changes are associated with the job.
     

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