The following post is Part 2 of an investment banking analyst's nightmare all-nighter.

If you missed Part 1, read it here.

After getting ready to leave work at a reasonable hour, you get bombed with a nasty email and get caught up in a fire drill that will have you pulling an all-nighter at work. You just got through an unbelievable load of late-night additions to the pitchbook you've been cranking on, and you're catching a breather after sending the latest draft to your VP....

1:06 am

That was fast.

From: Jon Vepee
To: Aaron Burr
Time: Wed 8/22/2012 1:06 AM
Subject: Re: Latest Draft

Thx. I will look thru and revert w comments. Btw, spoke to Embdee and he will look at in AM. He is good w/old pages and since new projections aren't materially different than old ones, should be ok on those. If he has comments on new pages we can do page swaps in AM, prior to mtg.

You fight hard against the anger welling up from the obvious question: if we don't care that the new projections aren't that different from the old ones, why did we waste our time dropping them in? Stay calm.

2:04 am

You spent the last hour dejectedly chewing on crappy sushi, wondering why that girl never texted you back after you had asked for a rain check a few hours ago. Meanwhile, you're halfheartedly self-checking your work and find a couple minor issues here and there, no big deal, until you come to the IPO output page. Shit... this is all messed up. You copied over a formula incorrectly and the output is busted - great, now your VP is going to freak out.

2:07 am

Like clockwork.

From: Jon Vepee
To: Aaron Burr
Time: Wed 8/22/2012 2:07 AM
Subject: Re: Latest Draft

Here are comments. Output on p112 does not make sense. Pls send me xls backup. I will call you at your desk to discuss.

Sigh... here we go. Now your VP is paranoid about the calculations. You think about cleaning up your incredibly ghetto IPO/M&A/LBO/DCF/RMT model before sending it, and realize that it's just way too late for that. You set the model to IPO, fix the busted formula, and send.

3:45 am

After an hour of walking your understandably cranky VP through the model over the phone, you finish up the other comments and send back for one last look. Fingers crossed - maybe you'll even be able to get home for a quick nap and shower.

4:35 am

From: Jon Vepee
To: Aaron Burr
Time: Wed 8/22/2012 4:35 AM
Subject: Re: Latest Draft

Looks good.


Sigh of relief.


I just have a few nits

- Change all instances of "mm" to "millions"
- Coloring on some outputs is weird - please conform
- Please update all public figures to latest close. This is an automatic pull, right?

At this point you don't even have the energy to cope with these insulting comments. You respond "ok" and get to it. Time to hit the printer - the idea of printing and binding before final MD sign-off is highly questionable, but it's probably for the best as the morning rush of print requests will be an utter disaster for your last-second rush job.

You send the final pdf to Printing. Ten copies, single-sided in color, wire bound, pitchbook format. Need ASAP.

6:34 am

You wake up in a small puddle of your own drool. The phone is ringing, it's Printing and your books are ready. You must've passed out at your desk for an hour there. You wipe your face and haul yourself up to the Printing floor. The sun is rising, peeking through the clouds, and the gray light hurts your bleary eyes as it streams through the windows. Manhattan is waking up to a drizzly day.

7:02 am

Thankfully, you've developed a good rapport with the Printing guys (this isn't your first rodeo) so they do a good job on your books. After the customary flip, you find only one minor typo on page 132, which at this point you could absolutely not care less about. You've got a little more than a half hour until your MD gets in, at which point you can hand him the book and prepare for any last-moment changes prior to the 10 am meeting.

7:15 am

Your VP walks in, bucket-size coffee in hand. He looks tired, but compared to him, you look homeless. He quickly flips through a copy of the book and grunts in approval before sauntering over to his office. He doesn't see the typo on page 132. He also doesn't notice that you didn't end up changing any of the instances of "mm" to "millions." Jackass.

7:40 am

You see your MD walk in and head for his office. You take a quick walk to the bathroom, splash a bit of water on your face and tighten up your tie. After the night you've had, you'd club this guy's head from behind if you saw him on the street, but right now, you still need to try and look halfway presentable. Practice that stupid smile; get ready to dance, monkey, dance. You scurry back to your desk and grab a copy of the book before heading over to your MD's office.

Knock and peek your head in. He waves you off, already barking into his phone, giving you the "need 5 minutes" sign. Fine.

7:55 am

You wait 15 minutes, so as not to bother your MD, but you're getting worried about time. If there are any kind of material changes to this deck, you'll need to get them done in mere milliseconds so as to leave enough time to swap out the pages.

Knock again, peek head in. Your MD's got his feet up, reading the Journal.

Hi Joe, here is the latest version of the deck. Let us know if you have any comments to the new pages. We have about 30 minutes, after that we'll need to reprint anything new and rebind the books in order to have enough time."

Oh, thanks - leave it here. I'll get it back to you guys sometime over the weekend.

... the weekend?

Oh yeah. Sorry. I was about to email you guys. The management team emailed me early this morning and told me that they decided to reschedule their trip to New York due to the weather. Something about possible rainstorms and potentially getting stuck here overnight. So we're back to the original timing.


You mumble something incoherent and walk out without saying a word.

7:56 am

You give the download to your VP who brushes it off like it's nothing - he's brutally jaded after years of putting up with the same crap - and you head back to your desk. You sit down and close your eyes for a moment, regaining the strength to head home and take a shower before a new day begins. What an awful night. At least it's over, for now.

You hear a familiar beep.

Just another night and day on Wall Street.

Aaron Burr is a retired investment banking analyst and currently works as an associate at a private equity fund. He has pulled way too many all nighters - share your horror stories in the comments section or send them to [email protected]

Missed Part 1? Read it here.

Comments (23)


This was terrific! Almost Leveraged sellout worthy. SB!

Metal. Music. Life. www.headofmetal.com

In The Flesh:

This was terrific! Almost Leveraged sellout worthy. SB!

Is the LSO still online? I want to read that stuff.


Reads very well.

"After you work on Wall Street it's a choice, would you rather work at McDonalds or on the sell-side? I would choose McDonalds over the sell-side." - David Tepper


These are too good


Painful. Nice work.


well done burr, sb

WSO's COO (Chief Operating Orangutan) | My story | My Linkedin


Loved it.

"If you want to succeed in this life, you need to understand that duty comes before rights and that responsibility precedes opportunity."


so accurate...it actually hurts to read these.


so accurate...it actually hurts to read these.

So you're saying you don't want to jump back into IBD as an associate?


We need another.

Aaron Burr:

At this point you don't even have the energy to cope with these insulting comments.

my favorite line...well done


Damn, how you managed not to scream out profanities after you heard "the weekend" is some serious self restraint.

"Do you like Huey Lewis and the News?"


I'm stressed out just reading this Burr

I was taught that the human brain was the crowning glory of evolution so far, but I think it's a very poor scheme for survival.


Monkey Business 2.0...great stuff


Dear god...so good. So true.

finance is the science of goal architecture.


This reads like the script of a TV show...remind me again why the FUCK i want to do this after graduating...


made me sick..

good description tho, its pretty acurate


I was kind of hoping for another firedrill by the emdee.
But, Christopher Nolan like ending.

The Knicks are back?


This is scary.

The HBS guys have MAD SWAGGER. They frequently wear their class jackets to boston bars, strutting and acting like they own the joint. They just ooze success, confidence, swagger, basically attributes of alpha males.


Great story. Nice

It's not about the money. It's about the game between people.


Great story, really enjoyed reading it.


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