• Sharebar

Although I have not been in banking that long (4 months), I have yet to see a black banker. I have seen two S&T guys, but no bankers. Is it a lack of brain power or a lack of opportunity

Comments (74)

  • Cornelius's picture

    ..i've seen three in my former firm. two male, one female.

    in banking that is.

    also, start being PC - african american.

    I'm making it up as I go along.

  • HerSerendipity's picture

    african american is not necessarily pc. Actually, the term "black" is okay. Many blacks of African and Caribbean descent don't want to be lumped in to the "african american" label since they are Nigerian/Jamaican/etc.

  • In reply to HerSerendipity
    Cornelius's picture

    HerSerendipity wrote:
    african american is not necessarily pc. Actually, the term "black" is okay. Many blacks of African and Caribbean descent don't want to be lumped in to the "african american" label since they are Nigerian/Jamaican/etc.

    fine..then i'm "green."

    I'm making it up as I go along.

  • vadremc's picture

    Did I just read that correctly? "A lack of brain power"...

    Let me get this straight. So you've surmised that there MUST be only 2 reasons. Either they cannot do the work, or they are being discriminated against.

    Yeah, you'll do just fine in banking...

    "In the end, there can be only one..."

    "Cut the burger into thirds, place it on the fries, roll one up homey..." - Epic Meal Time

  • Alphaholic's picture

    Just goes to show you that you can be retarded, ignorant, and harbor just a ting of racism and still land that dream job on Wall Street. OP is living proof...

    Maybe I'm the odd man out, but at every BB, MM and the couple of boutique interviews I had, I ended up meeting or interviewing with at least one black girl or guy.

  • youngmoney's picture

    dude... lack of brain power? you kidding me? how can you say that on a public forum? Are you retarded or something? How did you ever get a bank to give you an offer?

  • junkbondswap's picture

    Listen, this is America and a public forum. The guy can say whatever he wants (luckily we still have protection of the First Amendment until Obama revises the document in Feb) and we can ridicule the OP accordingly for his comments. I have worked with bankers of all races and religions.

  • rndmacnt's picture

    You do realize that not everybody that's black is American, right?

  • -R-'s picture

    Ouch, that was harsh..

    *sigh* a lack of opporunities-
    for us non-whites..



  • In reply to junkbondswap
    Devils Advocate's picture

    junkbondswap wrote:
    Listen, this is America and a public forum. The guy can say whatever he wants (luckily we still have protection of the First Amendment until Obama revises the document in Feb) and we can ridicule the OP accordingly for his comments. I have worked with bankers of all races and religions.

    Yeah...he is definitely going to revise that...you've made it apparent that you are unhappy with the Obama victory but give me a break...

  • monty09's picture

    I am hisp and out of 7 people on my trade team.... 3 are hisp

  • Newbie_banker's picture

    Hmm I wonder whether tough times bring out the worst in people (e.g. racism).

  • TheAxe's picture

    there are a number of very qualified and hard working black people at my firm. i don't think it's a stretch to say that non-minorities outnumber minorities, but we have a lot of people from different nationalities and backgrounds, all of whom are very talented, smart people.

    i don't think OP's question is a bad one if it is phrased something like, "is it a lack of interest in these jobs or a lack of opportunity?"

    making generalities about race and intelligence shows not only a shallow outlook, but also sets you up for some bad situations if you say the wrong thing to the wrong person.

  • In reply to MoneyKingdom
    Devils Advocate's picture

    MoneyKingdom wrote:
    sailing101 wrote:
    Stan O'Neal? hahaha

    Lol I guess that is what happens when affirmitive action is at work!

    Lol yea Affirmative Action was also at work at and helped fuck over Citigroup, Lehman Brothers, and Bear Stearns, because Chuck Prince, Dick Fuld, and James Cayne were blac...wait a minute...

  • fp175's picture

    Ogulesi - formerly of CS, global head of banking. Now in PE...

    I can only speak for black immigrants and most of those want their kids to have "real jobs" in law or medicine, it is not considered elite amongst a lot of African or Caribbean families to be a banker.

  • big unit's picture

    Being a banker really isn't respected in certain communities (outside of WASP and Jews) so it might be a lack of demand.

  • In reply to Barbarian@theGate
    L's picture

    <a href="mailto:Barbarian@theGate">Barbarian@theGate</a> wrote:
    Ray McGuire of Citi/MS, total stud

    agree 100%

    Ray McGuire is currently co-head of Banking @ citi and his is the man.

  • In reply to giocatoredoro
    youngmoney's picture

    no comment... you're a 3.8 from a target yet still think in a backwards way fit for the 60s at best. You'll make it far in life. My comment about this being a public forum was not meant to say you don't have the freedom to say whatever... you do. But saying something like that makes you sound retarded - on a public forum. You're embarrassing yourself in front of others. Did they not teach you at your target to think before you speak?

  • In reply to MoneyKingdom
    Gorilla Whale's picture

    MoneyKingdom wrote:
    I am not retarded

    I don't think that's for you to decide, friend. It's not quite the same as a self-administered prostate exam. Sadly enough for you, this means you no longer have a valid reason to put things up your rectum.

  • Alphaholic's picture

    You can measure how intelligent someone is by how large their head is! True story!

  • ehf3660's picture

    This thread is depressing. I hope these posters are actually just high school freshman and not aspiring financial professionals.

  • Genesis's picture

    MoneyKingdom is a retard.

  • Hephaestus's picture

    Your'e retarded OP.

    I don't even know where to begin.
    1) Seriously, how much brain power does it take to be a banker? This is always the first thing I point out when people bring up retarded arguments like this.

    2) Its dumb that you had to ask this question, when the answers should be obvious:

    yes, blacks and hispanics do not achieve academically at the same level as whites (on avg), but a simple glance at the data shows that the reasons are cultural and socioeconomic, not genetic. the whole "these people must be genetically stupid" argument has actually been applied to all kinds of minorities throughout history (even *gasp* Asians- the 'model' minority).

    Furthermore, a lot of the socioeconomic disadvantages are due to historical injustices (before you try to call me out with bullshit slavery was over forever ago arguments, let me point out that black people have been excluded from all of the U.S. governments biggest wealth giveaways- think moving west and all that free land).

    Finally, since blacks achieve less academically on average, and because they are a small proportion of the population, there just aren't enough high achieving blacks to make sure you get to see a black person every day at your banking, consulting, or w/e job.

    For that i'm truly sorry. Now shut the fuck up. You're making your parents look bad for investing in that target education.

  • LondonE11's picture

    You do live in a virtual world, because I seriously doubt you have the balls to say that to a group of people face to face. Your "Freedom of speech" only exists online, where you can say what you want and disappear.

  • big unit's picture

    I could have done I-banking in 9th grade.

    Getting a 1400 on your SATs is harder than building a valuation model.

    A 1500 SAT score is as intellectually impressive is doing M&A for a year

    Intelligence and banking aren't that highly correlated.

    Intelligent people do banking because they just need to learn that stuff and to leap frog several years of low-level work at a F500 firm.

  • startarevolution's picture

    Yes, we know race and intelligence correlation is a sensitive issue, but a lot of you idiots need to get off your high horses besides taking the PC stance. People are so happy to point out any other differences when it comes to race because it makes each group "special" and "unique", but when it comes to the topic of intelligence all of a sudden we're all "equal", end of discussion. Politically correct bullshit.

  • In reply to startarevolution
    youngmoney's picture

    it's not about being politically correct. It's just that saying that fewer black bankers is attributable to the fact that blacks are dubmer than whites is a retarded statement to make. And if you stand by that statement, you yourself are a retard. You have to look way beyond that, mostly at socio-economical issues, to see why there's fewer blacks in banking. So stop calling people that are obviously better read than you are idiots. How's that?

  • alreadyrich's picture

    yeah most of the black bankers are african

  • youngmoney's picture

    people that keep defending MoneyKingdom... I don't know what's wrong with your way of thinking... a statement about ANY race other than your own that lumps everyone together in a demeaning way is racist. Honestly, before wasting your time typing something stupid, tell everyone your name and where you work and then go ahead and defend the moron that implied that blacks aren't smart enough to do banking. If you think it's completely ok, that is... Any volunteers? Thought so.

  • thedude's picture

    was the gap is significantly smaller. far to small to explain the huge difference in wealth and income. the point is regardless of the genes, if you take a fully educated black person from an upper middle class or higher family and they will succeed at almost the same level whites... then calculate the racial obstacles already in place in today's world... and you are left with a very small argument that supports genes and a very large argument for everything else.

    drawing on wide sweeping large generalities is racist. there is no way other way to cut it.

  • thedude's picture

    i give up.

    finally a parting thought, with all the fucked up shit that has been done in the name of "race" in the world... I would reevaluate why it is that you so adamantly feel the need to go there....

  • TalibKweli's picture

    This topic is disgraceful. Judging by the posts, I would think this topic was made on one of the social forums I frequent, rather than banking professionals. Pathetic.

  • skins1's picture

    Consider this.....

    There are plenty of blacks in finance (and yes, I'm talking about front-office positions). Just like there are plenty of blacks in top MBA programs. That said, many of those people tend to be Africans, and not black Americans.

    So this disproves all the people who somehow claim that the black race is somehow inferior to any other race. That said, it also brings up a key point that many people fail to consider--that maybe there is a cultural reason for the disparities.

    If there was racism based purely on skin colour then there would be fewer Africans in finance, not just fewer black Americans. So it looks to me like there are two possible reasons for this:

    1) Black Americans are being discriminated against not because of skin colour, but because of cultural preconceptions that exist in America, OR

    2) The cultural norms of modern day black American are somehow resulting in lower performance for blacks.

    I am in no position to argue for either #1 or #2, but I think it would be helpful if people looked past race and instead at culture. The obvious parallel to this is Islamic extremism. With this issue you can judge what effect cultural standards will have on the prosperity of a group of people without turning it into a race issue.

    Few will claim that Arabs, for example, are any less intelligent, hard-working, etc. than any other groups of people. Instead, you can attribute the lack of progress of certain countries in the Middle East NOT to a racial differential, but rather to cultural issues. One such issue would be lack of equal opportunity for women. When you prevent 1/2 of the population from working then it tends to cut your GDP in half, for example.

    Consider looking beyond skin colour and asking yourself whether or not American culture as a whole might just be crashing down around us as we speak. I have very little faith in the people of America, and I believe our entire culture (black AND white) is one of laziness, selfishness, complete disregard for other human beings, and total lack of responsibility for one's actions. Maybe we should be worrying about fixing this problem instead of getting caught up in whether it drags down whites or blacks first, because eventually it will hit us all....

    And before anyone gets fired up about my criticism of the US--I served as an officer in the US military and I am a decorated combat veteran, so I pretty much reserve the right to say whatever the fuck I want about this country.....

  • In reply to skins1
    thedude's picture

    skins1 wrote:

    1) Black Americans are being discriminated against not because of skin colour, but because of cultural preconceptions that exist in America, OR

    .... uhhhhh..........durrr.......... noone said bankers are smarter than monkeys!!

  • youngmoney's picture

    the only people making a racial statement were the ones arguing for moneykingdom's theory. I think it's pretty evident that everyone else said you have to look past race to explain the differences not only in banking, but also social, cultural, and yes, economic status quo. I think thedude and myself were simply arguing that those comments are racist. It's not about being PC. And seriously, you can be a 2.4 from a community college and still come off as better educated as someone who says blacks' absence in finance is attributable to their "lack of brain power..." and then quoting some studies that argue for a similar thesis. Are whites, then, genetically inferior to asians in sciences (math, physics, chemistry, etc) simply because there are so many more asians who work in those fields? Please...

  • IBnutz's picture


    who cares in the end what the ethinc breakdown of your floor is like... you're black and you suck then go fuck yourself... if you're white and you suck then go fuck yourself.

    its that simple

  • MoneyKingdom's picture

    Wow, the stir that this topic caused.

  • LeggoMyGekko's picture

    I'll state the obvious - there are stereotypes that simply mold our perception (whether we like it or not)

    My opinions:
    1. African American/Black and Hispanic individuals are in no way less intelligent than any other individual of different origin. They are simply given less opportunities in their childhood to take advantage of the education system. Thus, fewer African American/Black and Hispanic bankers on the street.

    2. Affirmative Action (AA) has played its part in creating opportunities for minorities, but has transformed into a sort of fuel for this ignorant stereotype. Because of AA, qualified individuals who are not considered minorities are not given the same opportunities. They are on an uneven playing field. I've seen less intelligent/unqualified individuals land jobs simply because of their race.
    **On the flip side, I guess you can say that AA is needed to create an uneven playing field in schooling/employment because of the uneven playing field these minorities faced earlier in their childhood**

    Feel free to bash my opinions...

  • cphbravo96's picture


    I'm not going to bash your opinion but I personally feel all this "given less opportunities" busy is a crock of shit. I got bused to an "inner city" school when I first started high school and I somehow managed to turn out just fine, not selling drugs or hanging out with a gang.

    The lack of success that most people stereotype to the black community simply has to do with lack of morals and values and frankly, fathers. Everything that is generally viewed as common in the typical white community seems to be the opposite in the black. A mother & father vs just a mother, or grandmother...the father is the bread winner vs the female bread winners. People might think differently but having a stable family and a male figure to emulate goes a long way...especially if that person doesn't sell drugs, holds a steady job and brings some type of moral values to the family.

    But just like anything, people can overcome the obstacles put in their path if they really want to. With that said, the black community might be put at a disadvantage but it has more to do with how they treat themselves than how society treats them and the crappy teachers and ancient books that the white man intentionally places in their schools.

    Additionally, I think that "black leaders" like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson do the black community such an injustice with their finger pointing and scape-goating. The reality of becoming successful in life is overcoming obstacles and taking responsibility for your actions. If you constantly have someone watching over you and blaming other people you never become a better person.

    And FYI, the aforementioned characteristics can be applied to virtually every race, including whites.

    "The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they're ignorant, it's just that they know so much that isn't so."
    - Ronald Reagan

  • In reply to cphbravo96
    LeggoMyGekko's picture

    My argument: Given less opportunities, the minority community tends to underperform; thus, they need something (AA) to even the playing field.

    Your argument: Disadvantages are not the source of underperformance; moreover, it's "how they treat themselves" that create the inability to overcome obstacles.

    Another good point of view. I was agreeing to what you were writing until you wrote this nonsensical bullshit - "ancient books that the white man intentionally places in their schools".

    That one just made me laugh. Nonetheless, I do understand and agree with your argument.