How Banker Pay Is Out of Whack

We all know that we get paid a lot relative to the average guy on Main Street. We like to think it's because we're something special: that we've attended the right schools, that we have the right combination of hard and soft skills, that we're...well...somehow better than everyone else. But this was not always the case.

In the 1950's, bankers made the same amount of money as everyone else. Now, you might say "Well, Eddie, that was in the '50s. We're so much more sophisticated and our work is so much harder today." And that may be true. But is it 500 times harder? Because that's roughly the amount that bank CEO pay has pulled away from the average worker since just the 1980's.

The problem lies in how bankers are compensated. The shareholders-be-damned approach that has evolved since Merrill Lynch went public in 1971 simply rewards the wrong behavior. The current compensation model unduly rewards those who take excessive risk and empire build (case in point: JPM's Ina Drew - the Whale's boss - earned $1.3 million a month for the last two years).

Obviously this model is retarded and leads to all sorts of moral hazard, most notably the "company put". In other words, a trader can take all the risk he wants to juice his pay knowing full well that if he blows himself up the firm is going to eat the loss. It's the classic heads-I-win-tails-you-lose scenario.

Another bogus metric bank CEOs (and, by extension, lower rung bank employees) are paid on is the size of the bank. Citi is notorious for trying to juice year-over-year growth, when in fact a bloated behemoth of a bank is one of the worst performing business models. I'd direct you to the hilarious graphic in the article showing how the Bank of the Ozarks absolutely kicked JP Morgan Chase's ass from 2005-2008.

Now before you get all pissed off and think that I'm saying you're overpaid, realize that I'm saying that the worst of it is at the upper levels. But can you explain to me why bankers should make several multiples of the average guy on the street? Especially right out of undergrad, when you don't know anything?

I'm not immune to the criticism. If you guys knew what I did to make this kind of money in the late '90s, you'd probably puke (yes, that's one week's pay):

I got rewarded for taking crazy risks that didn't always work out all that well for the client.

I had a conversation with some friends the other night and the topic of our worst job ever came up. I didn't give it much thought, but I said the worst job I ever had was building a parking lot once when I was 20. Coincidentally, that job took about a week as well, for which I was paid $350. $350 to work in the hot sun pouring asphalt, lugging cement blocks around, and pounding rebar through them with a sledgehammer. $350.

As a commodities trader, I made 120 times that to sit on my ass filling out trade tickets and yelling, "Runner!". Kinda makes me shake my head these days (but not enough to give the money back).

What do you guys think? Would indexing compensation to Return on Assets (as the majority of regional banks already do) instead of Return on Equity bring things more in line? Guys like TheKing and I are always calling for a return to Glass-Steagall, and that would certainly take care of the TBTF issue. Would you still work in finance if the compensation were more in line with what your peers make?

Comments (49)

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 8:11am

Pretty sure I speak for everyone when I say we would like to know what you did during the week listed on that sheet.

You're born, you take shit. You get out in the world, you take more shit. You climb a little higher, you take less shit. Till one day you're up in the rarefied atmosphere and you've forgotten what shit even looks like. Welcome to the layer cake, son.
 
Jun 12, 2012 - 8:12am

I think it is moderately justified. I cannot speak at the higher levels but with the hours worked I think associate and analyst pay is on par with what it takes a person to get there.

Again, I know your talking about higher levels but on the lower rungs its much easier and takes much less education and very little networking to find a job building a parking lot. The application processes is most likely not even there and your not a waste of life. I only speak because I worked doing roofing and i did nothing but show up and work even in the rain if we were putting gutters up and splash blocks down.

At the higher level's It they may be overpaid but again I am not going to speak on it because I have absolutely no clue.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 8:36am

Edmundo Braverman:

What do you guys think? Would indexing compensation to Return on Assets (as the majority of regional banks already do) instead of Return on Equity bring things more in line?

I like the concept of using RoA instead of RoE. This gives a greater sense of "real" returns. It also discounts the incentives and tax breaks given to debt financing.

I think a major problem with executive (not just bankers) compensation in general is the focus on quarterly earnings. Why should someone get a bonus for increasing stock price 7 out of 8 quarters when in the 8th quarter the stock falls to pre-rise levels?

On another note, I think the highest compensated (and maybe most powerful) officer at a bank should be the Chief Risk Officer (and the risk officers and employees should have adequate training). What kind of system do we have where a bank executive can override the opinion of the risk officer saying "that's too risky"? The reason for the risk officer is precisely to say, "that's too risky," and to stop bad bets from being made.

The only thing I have to say about starting pay, is that in a large majority of entry-level jobs, the potential for an 80-100 hour week is nonexistent (hell, the potential for a 60 hour work doesn't exist for most recent grads). Work after 6 p.m.? Work on Saturdays? The engineers would riot.

My WSO Blog "Unbelievably Believable" -- RG3
 
Jun 12, 2012 - 8:48am

@Nefarious - Kinda hard to remember exactly, but based on that sheet I'd say mostly S&P and Treasuries (and not that candy-assed S&P-mini, which was just introduced around this time).

@In The Flesh - No, definitely an outlier week, and I think I kept this sheet because it had my best single-day ever (~$20,000 with the bonus on 5/14)

@Dudemaster - Yeah, our week went from Thursday open to Wednesday close, and we got paid on Fridays. Bonus accumulated throughout the month and was paid out on the 15th of the following month. It was pretty sweet getting paid 5 (and sometimes 6) times a month after working in equities and only getting paid once a month.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 8:50am

Edmundo Braverman:
@Nefarious - Kinda hard to remember exactly, but based on that sheet I'd say mostly S&P and Treasuries (and not that candy-assed S&P-mini, which was just introduced around this time).

I like to think I am doing pretty well in my career; however, I hope one day I can get to a point where I pull in 40k in a week and 13 years down the road not even remember what the fuck I did to earn it.

You're born, you take shit. You get out in the world, you take more shit. You climb a little higher, you take less shit. Till one day you're up in the rarefied atmosphere and you've forgotten what shit even looks like. Welcome to the layer cake, son.
 
Jun 12, 2012 - 8:56am

Nefarious-:
Edmundo Braverman:
@Nefarious - Kinda hard to remember exactly, but based on that sheet I'd say mostly S&P and Treasuries (and not that candy-assed S&P-mini, which was just introduced around this time).

I like to think I am doing pretty well in my career; however, I hope one day I can get to a point where I pull in 40k in a week and 13 years down the road not even remember what the fuck I did to earn it.

LOL. Now you're making me sound like a dick. I traded a lot of different shit, but I got on a hot streak around this time playing the Treasuries off the S&P and vice versa. Gun to my head, I think there was a little cotton in there too (I seem to recall a drought in '99). That time of year, probably a few unleaded gas as well. What I have no trouble remembering are the massive parties I funded when I was rolling like this.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 9:26am

I respect you Eddie and I know you admit you're not immune to to criticism yourself but then you follow that with a 40k stub for a week's worth of work then raise the question of whether people in finance are being paid too much? I'm asking an honest, non-sarcastic question here: isn't it easier to come up with this point of view AFTER you've ridden the wave and gotten out of the business? Would you have still worked if you got 1/20th the commission?

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 9:29am

Nabooru:
I'm asking an honest, non-sarcastic question here: isn't it easier to come up with this point of view AFTER you've ridden the wave and gotten out of the business? Would you have still worked if you got 1/20th the commission?

Of course it's easier. Would I have still done that for $2,000 a week? Assuming that you mean the ceiling on that kind of work was $2,000 a week, then no. There are plenty of less stressful jobs out there that pay at or near that much. If the upside was still there, however, then yes. In fact, there were plenty of weeks where I only made $2,000.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 9:46am

Movie stars that make $15 million a flick.. or Athletes that make $15 million a season..

Are they working 500 times harder than the average joe? Especially when they are 18 year olds out of high school (even younger than Analysts)?

Remember, professional atheletes (in particular) were also paid the same or less than the average joe in the 1950's too. And I am not sure the exact multiple, but average pay for actors/actresses in the 1980's does not even compare to what they are paid today.

While I agree there are many people "overpaid" on the basis of how "hard" they work (physically or intellectually).. we are lucky to have the right to be paid what somebody else is willing to pay us.

It is not fair, but I am glad that the US has the best sports and movies in the world.. even though I hate the fact that some kid that happened to be on a popular Sitcom is now set for life.

..of course, the public perception of what value entertainment brings to the world vs. finance is another topic for debate.

So.. to sum it up, yeah.. give me some of that commission!

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 9:59am

lionwater:
Movie stars that make $15 million a flick.. or Athletes that make $15 million a season..

Are they working 500 times harder than the average joe? Especially when they are 18 year olds out of high school (even younger than Analysts)?

Remember, professional atheletes (in particular) were also paid the same or less than the average joe in the 1950's too. And I am not sure the exact multiple, but average pay for actors/actresses in the 1980's does not even compare to what they are paid today.

While I agree there are many people "overpaid" on the basis of how "hard" they work (physically or intellectually).. we are lucky to have the right to be paid what somebody else is willing to pay us.

It is not fair, but I am glad that the US has the best sports and movies in the world.. even though I hate the fact that some kid that happened to be on a popular Sitcom is now set for life.

..of course, the public perception of what value entertainment brings to the world vs. finance is another topic for debate.

So.. to sum it up, yeah.. give me some of that commission!

I don't know if professional athletics can be compared. Sure, there are guys that make a ton of money and put minimal effort in.

Then there are guys that spend countless hours at practice, watching film, in the gym, going to team meetings, talking to the media, having to be involved in philanthropy events for the community or charity, etc.

Same with any profession, some people do the bare minimum and others work their asses off.

You're born, you take shit. You get out in the world, you take more shit. You climb a little higher, you take less shit. Till one day you're up in the rarefied atmosphere and you've forgotten what shit even looks like. Welcome to the layer cake, son.
 
Jun 12, 2012 - 11:05am

Nefarious-:
lionwater:
Movie stars that make $15 million a flick.. or Athletes that make $15 million a season..

Are they working 500 times harder than the average joe? Especially when they are 18 year olds out of high school (even younger than Analysts)?

Remember, professional atheletes (in particular) were also paid the same or less than the average joe in the 1950's too. And I am not sure the exact multiple, but average pay for actors/actresses in the 1980's does not even compare to what they are paid today.

While I agree there are many people "overpaid" on the basis of how "hard" they work (physically or intellectually).. we are lucky to have the right to be paid what somebody else is willing to pay us.

It is not fair, but I am glad that the US has the best sports and movies in the world.. even though I hate the fact that some kid that happened to be on a popular Sitcom is now set for life.

..of course, the public perception of what value entertainment brings to the world vs. finance is another topic for debate.

So.. to sum it up, yeah.. give me some of that commission!

I don't know if professional athletics can be compared. Sure, there are guys that make a ton of money and put minimal effort in.

Then there are guys that spend countless hours at practice, watching film, in the gym, going to team meetings, talking to the media, having to be involved in philanthropy events for the community or charity, etc.

Same with any profession, some people do the bare minimum and others work their asses off.

Marines and soldiers are paid a fraction of the average joe, and an even smaller fraction of athletes. Athletes that are paid $15 million a year are not working 500 times harder than a Marine.. and the value of the Marine is arguably way more valuable than a professional athlete.

So.. my point is that pay is not based on how hard you work.. and I am glad that we live in a place that allows that. Rather, pay is based on how much perceived value you bring to the people with the check books..

..not that it is "correct," but the idea of pay being corellated to the degree of rigor you exert is not the way it is, and not the way it should be. Or we would all mine mines for 120+ hours a week and the world would suck.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 9:47am

I hate the comparisons to manual labor. Pouring asphalt in the hot sun sounds unpleasant, but it is not more difficult than front office finance. If it were, fewer people would be able to do it and the price of their labor would be higher. The fact that you were able to pour asphalt is actually pretty strong evidence of this point.

I cooked hamburgers and french fries in high school. It was much more unpleasant than private equity, but it required no skill whatsoever, no investment in human capital, and that's why I made $5.15/hour for the pleasure- even less than you were paid for your strongman abilities in the parking lot (and since I'm probably 10-15 years younger than you, that's much less in real terms). There are probably crab fishermen and mercenaries who make more than a lot of finance professionals for doing dangerous, highly skilled manual work.

Maybe you could make the argument that you have to have financial capital first to create human capital, which puts some equally capable people at a disadvantage. That's somewhat true. But that's a separate problem entirely from differential wages.

Your main point is that incentives are poor. That's definitely true, but that is also a separate issue from overall level of pay, though maybe you can argue that incentives change when you start earning millions of dollars.

I am wise because I know that I know nothing -Socrates
 
Jun 12, 2012 - 10:22am

CEO pay (not just at banks) has exploded partially because the organizations are so much larger. Citigroup has 266,000 employees...this would have been unthinkable in the 1950s.

Compensation, even at my relatively junior level, seems absurd to me. Nothing in finance (aside from the work done by quants) is that hard. But banks hire the best because they can, and they need the best to justify their fees. Consulting firms are arguably even more fixated on hiring "the best". So, you have to pay these entry level employees what they could demand elsewhere.

Then again, I see a lot of jobs where the salary is completely disconnected from the employee's worth. Does a HR drone really add 70k per year in value?

And yes, the market's valuation of banks borders on irrational. If you look at a bank's 10-k, it is vastly more opaque than that of a manufacturer or even a tech company. The products offered by a bank are so complex many ER analysts cannot understand them. Even those with the necessary knowledge cannot possibly review all the products offered...Citigroup alone would require a small team of analysts.

But investors are willing to look beyond this non-disclosure in exchange for 15-20%+ RoEs, and reward those CEOs who can deliver. Institutional managers almost have no choice with such high performance...it is "invest or perish".

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 11:01am

Zafrynex:
Guys who milked the cow for years then come here advocating that others shouldn't do it are funny.

Who's advocating that others shouldn't work in finance?
If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford
 
Jun 12, 2012 - 11:20am

happypantsmcgee:
Zafrynex:
Guys who milked the cow for years then come here advocating that others shouldn't do it are funny.

Who's advocating that others shouldn't work in finance?

Exactly.

And assuming he's referring to me, allow me to point out one humongous difference between my making that money and how it's made today (for the most part). I was personally liable for losses. There was no company put for me. Twice in that time I lost more than a month's pay due to errors I made. And I was lucky to keep my job those times. Despite rumors to the contrary, Bruno Iksil is still working for JPM and presumably getting a paycheck (as far as I know).

**EDIT** You know what? Screw Bruno Iksil and whether or not he still works there. Jamie Dimon still fucking works there, which is utterly baffling to me. How the shareholders don't revolt is a mystery.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 11:18am

In my opinion there is no way that people in finance deserve what they are paid and those the think so are just drinking their own kool-aid.

There are way more qualified and intelligent individuals out there that are want a finance job than there are finance jobs available. If compensation was adjusted down you would still have the "best and the brightest" going into finance. Granted the applicant pool would diminish but that would only eliminate the people that are doing finance not because they truly enjoy it but because they get paid well. You would be left with the truly passionate individuals.

With the above reference to movie stars and pro athletes, the reason they get paid so well is because they are unique, one of a kind. There is only one Kobe. In contract there are plenty of people that can do finance but given the limited slots they aren't given the opportunity. There is so much luck its stupid and people that don't acknowledge their own luck are just in some sort of narcissistic denial ( Michael Lewis Princeton Commencement)

). How many friends do we all have that are just as smart and just as capable but just didn't get that first break for whatever reason.

Yes, people in finance are smart. Yes, people in finance work hard and have a lot of stress. However, that does not justify the insane compensation packages. You are only doing your job. The CorpFin guy that does his analysis and creates and executes a cost savings plan of 100 million doesn't get a bonus on that he gets his salary. The engineer that invents the latest technology or pharma doesn't get a bonus on the millions/billions generated, just his salary.

An interesting shake up in the industry would be paying individuals a normal salary plus overtime, with minimal bonuses. This would compensate junior guys for their insane hours and probably force management to take a look at how efficiently they were using their human capital.

Seriously though, we are not "doing gods work", we are just doing a job function that happens to be finance related. Let's not get ahead of ourselves.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 12:23pm

Edmundo Braverman:
Allow me to point out one humongous difference between my making that money and how it's made today (for the most part). I was personally liable for losses. There was no company put for me. Twice in that time I lost more than a month's pay due to errors I made. And I was lucky to keep my job those times.

So the question becomes: Would the financial industry be better off if risk-taking institutions were private partnerships rather than publicly traded entities? In this business, the reduction of moral hazard is all about whether the decision makers have skin in the game.

Random Thought: Whoever can figure out how to take Law Firms public would probably make a fortune. And also do a massive disservice to the country. Can you imagine a publicly traded tort firm with a short-term bias? shudder

EDIT: Apparently one went public in the UK in (drumroll please...) Spring of 2007. Still illegal here but the ABA is considering the issue.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 2:41pm

illiniPride:
Edmundo Braverman:
Allow me to point out one humongous difference between my making that money and how it's made today (for the most part). I was personally liable for losses. There was no company put for me. Twice in that time I lost more than a month's pay due to errors I made. And I was lucky to keep my job those times.

So the question becomes: Would the financial industry be better off if risk-taking institutions were private partnerships rather than publicly traded entities? In this business, the reduction of moral hazard is all about whether the decision makers have skin in the game.

Random Thought: Whoever can figure out how to take Law Firms public would probably make a fortune. And also do a massive disservice to the country. Can you imagine a publicly traded tort firm with a short-term bias? shudder

EDIT: Apparently one went public in the UK in (drumroll please...) Spring of 2007. Still illegal here but the ABA is considering the issue.

I enthusiastically support private partnerships. I think it resolves many of the conflicting interests found in public companies, promotes a longer term outlook, and gives management a real ownership stake.

When I start looking for a long-term (10+ years) employer, the company being private will be a major selling point for me. Not having to worry about "shareholder value" and quarterly performance is a godsend, especially in finance.

 
Jun 12, 2012 - 12:50pm

I actually do think the comp makes some sense at the junior level, at least in IB. The way that I always explained it to friends and family back home is that I work 80-100 hours/week. That is 2 to 2.5 full time jobs. If entry level accountants (or whatever somewhat technical entry level job you choose) are making $60k, then $120-150k isn't that crazy.

 
Jun 14, 2012 - 12:31pm

TechBanking:
I actually do think the comp makes some sense at the junior level, at least in IB. The way that I always explained it to friends and family back home is that I work 80-100 hours/week. That is 2 to 2.5 full time jobs. If entry level accountants (or whatever somewhat technical entry level job you choose) are making $60k, then $120-150k isn't that crazy.

^^This would be my point. The work isn't always super intense (neither are most other jobs), but you are putting hours in that are equivalent to an additional employee, maybe even another 'half employee' on top of that. The pay is roughly in line with that, plus there are synergies to the firm for only having to employ two people instead of four or five...healthcare being one of them.

Also remember, especially at the junior level, your bonus is a big factor in whether or not you make really good money or silly money. If a first year doesn't get a good bucket rating, or the firm is doing poorly, they might walk away with less than $100k and while that is still about twice as much as other grads, it's still in line with the hours they put in (from a sheer number standpoint).

Lastly, opportunity cost. We are trying to put some calculations to something that has a wide range of values. It's easy to say that a person working twice as many hours as someone else should be making twice as much, but the way I see it, it should be more. In my mind, the additional effort and increased opportunity cost (losing out on personal time) calls for increased incremental pay. That is to say, the 9th hour at work is harder than the 8th and the 10th is harder than the 9th, etc. Now there are a lot of jobs where the workers pull 10 or 12 hour shifts and don't have a real wage increase over those that don't, but the added benefit of the lengthened work shifts is generally an extra day off of work every week...which doesn't happen in IB.

At a senior level? Well, it's hard to defend them.

Regards

"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
 
Jun 12, 2012 - 2:10pm

Edmundo Braverman:
[...]
EDIT You know what? Screw Bruno Iksil and whether or not he still works there. Jamie Dimon still fucking works there, which is utterly baffling to me. How the shareholders don't revolt is a mystery.

Corporate governance is broken for listed companies. Investors are partly to blame. They'd rather sell a share then fight management and then there is the whole indexing phenomena. I don't understand how following indexing suddenly precludes someone from exercising judgement about the management of companies. The situation isn't bad enough at JP Morgan to warrant activists investors getting involved. They and distressed investors are supposed to be the last lines of defence, not the only ones... I guess it's pretty hard to lose your job as CEO of a large public company...

I wonder what parts of banking / finance would still pay well in a new Glass–Steagall world. I think it would be wherever employees have more control over the production process and thus ownership. So maybe pure advisory at the client facing level (VP +), PE/HF and other high risk/reward strategies once you get carry. General management?

Athletes Vs Soldiers: ... talent, ability and value to society have nothing to do with it. You guys are stuck in labour theory of value without considering marginal costs, economies of scale and ownership of production.

Athletes don't get paid more than soldiers (or mercenaries for that matter) because of their inherent ability, their value to society or the scarcity of their talent. Sure, these factors might explain a 50-100% premium, but not the millions of dollars they make more than soldiers. They get paid so because they can sell their image / services / performance to multiple users at the same time. It's a combination of economies of scale and their ownership of production / their image. It's the same with actors (rather celebrities) and such.

Economies of Scale... You play one game and millions will watch it. Once you've played, it cost you nothing for additional people to watch your performance (whether the stadium has 100k fans, or 200k fans, you still only sweat it out for however long the game is). Yet, you can only kill for one army / government / dictator at a time. So you lack economies of scale. This is even before you get into licensing and the fact that Athletes own their brands and can earn income based on that without having any marginal costs or labour

Ownership of production / bargaining power... Athletes own the means of production and are better able to organise and extract their value (players associations / collective negotiations, etc...). Soldiers are like unskilled or semi-skilled non-unionised labour. They don't own their guns, bombs, or vehicles and they have little say over how they produce their killing, etc...

Social value... what athletes or soldiers get paid has nothing to do with their benefit to society. One could even argue that over history, soldiers have contributed a negative value in aggregate to humanity over history, yet they still get paid, but that is a different debate. The point is, what they get paid has almost nothing to do with "value" to society, rather the economics of the production process, market structure and political/legal framework. The same with most other jobs.

The idea that your income is your worth to society is pure fantasy....

 
Jun 13, 2012 - 4:02am

Disclaimer
I have never been a trader, don't know the T of trading, and so cannot comment on the moral hazard points and the public versus private debate. I only have experience on the M&A side of things.

High Pay
Lets start by how do the banks make the money to pay you. They advise on deals. On a 500 MM deal they probably make 5-10 MM as advisory fees. Why are banks "overpaid" for such deals when a legal firm would probably make less than 1 mn$ on the deal and an accounting firm 0.5 MM. If you look at the engagement letters, the banks do not even provide "specialist" advice while the legal and accounting firms do. And why pay a 5 MM fee for 500 MM deal, and say 10 MM for a 1000 MM deal when the work done is same on both the deals? Banks get high fees because (a) it is mainly success fee unlike legal and tax & accounting firms, and (b) the impact their role will have can be huge. There are lots of moments in negotiations where that 1 hour of extra fight can yield a few million dollars of value (and whether or not this value is achieved there will be no brownie points or repercussions), and you want to make sure that the bank puts in that one hour of extra effort. This is like the real estate broker's fees being determined roughly by the value of the sale/purchase. The client stands to make tens of millions (ideally) from the deal, and no harm in sharing a small % of that with the bank to ensure a job well done. If the deal gets screwed for the client, the bank will not get future business from them at the very least. So there IS skin in the game.
So you translate it to the individual level. For a deal which could make the bank a few MM $, why not pay the analyst a bit higher than "average" pay to ensure things stated above. Its probably not for "value add" per se, but maybe to make sure they don't fuck up.
Are the employees responsible for any losses the banks suffers? Yes! If the bank loses a client or does not do well, it means lower or zero bonuses, and the constant risk of getting laid off.
So its not about the hours put in or the "value add", but the value of things you are working on. Can companies choose to not pay such high fees? Well, the market has been set, and generally the companies need the banks for (a) strategic input on how to play the deal, and (b) the resources to actually run the deal.
It is similar to why movie stars or sports stars get paid the way they do. It is not about "talent" alone. Otherwise the theatre artists might get paid more than the current Hollywood stars. It is because of the money that rides on them. The stars get paid 20 MM because the studio brining the movie hopes to make 200 MM on the movie.

Talent/Can others do this
Are there more qualified and intelligent individuals in the world? Yes. Can anyone else do it? Yes – but after sufficient training (the way we are being trained on the job). It is like saying that the current H/W/S students don't deserve to be there because either a BRILLIANT student in remote China didn't get the opportunity to apply or did not have the money to study there or were rejected despite being brilliant. The current crop of bankers were anyways recruited from the people who did apply, and it is not difficult to argue that at least they are not worse than people who do not work in the banks.

For the TL;DR crowd
In summary, do not indulge in self guilt that you are getting paid more than the physical labourers out there because the money riding on your work output is much higher than the money being spent on you

 
Jun 13, 2012 - 8:37am

I hate when people bring the military into discussion about compensation and pay. Its such a bullshit argument. There are very very few people more easily replaced than a bullet sponge grunt in the military. People are, by and large, paid based on how easily they're replaced. MDs that make it rain get paid because its not easy to find another rain maker. 11B grunts get paid 13k because you can go get 5 more of them at will.

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford
Start Discussion

Popular Content See all

Received my PWP rejection email!
+91IBby Prospective Monkey in Investment Banking - Mergers and Acquisitions">Prospect in IB-M&A
Is Evercore the next Bulge Bracket bank?
+24IBby Intern in Investment Banking - Mergers and Acquisitions">Intern in IB-M&A
I got a top IB SA offer thanks to WSO
+17IBby Prospective Monkey in Investment Banking - Mergers and Acquisitions">Prospect in IB-M&A
Is Liontree the next bulge bracket bank?
+16IBby 1st Year Analyst in Sales & Trading - Equities">Analyst 1 in S&T - Equities
Virtual Summer Interns - which banks sent you WFH gear?
+15IBby Intern in Investment Banking - Industry/Coverage">Intern in IB - Ind

Total Avg Compensation

October 2020 Investment Banking

  • Director/MD (17) $704
  • Vice President (49) $326
  • Associates (263) $229
  • 3rd+ Year Analyst (36) $168
  • 2nd Year Analyst (147) $159
  • Intern/Summer Associate (136) $141
  • 1st Year Analyst (579) $130
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (555) $82

Leaderboard See all

1
LonLonMilk's picture
LonLonMilk
98.4
2
Jamoldo's picture
Jamoldo
98.3
3
Secyh62's picture
Secyh62
98.2
4
CompBanker's picture
CompBanker
97.8
5
redever's picture
redever
97.7
6
Addinator's picture
Addinator
97.6
7
Edifice's picture
Edifice
97.6
8
NuckFuts's picture
NuckFuts
97.5
9
frgna's picture
frgna
97.5
10
bolo up's picture
bolo up
97.5