Tell me one good reason why Jefferies isn’t going to be a top bank in the next 5 years

Given their ability to consistently advise on mega deals in the US and the fact that they poached a lot of rainmakers and expanded significantly in Europe in recent years, I don’t see one bank that has a better outlook right now (excluding EBs).

It is true to say that the London office doesn’t have the best culture and that exits aren’t really sexy right now, but given the bank's dealflow and ascension, the latter has every reason to change.

Lets now add the not-so-good outlook of DB, UBS, and Barclays, how on earth would Jefferies not end up at least at the same level in the next 5 years (mid-tier BB)?

 

Congrats on having my title in front of you and still making an incorrect guess haha

 

Guarantees for the new MD’s means less for the bonus pool for juniors

 
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Don't think anyone can categorically say it isn't a good bank or that it won't improve relative to peers.  JEFF most notably has a culture problem, if you had to pick a weak point.  The CEO spends his days on instagram and there have been plenty of harassment rumours etc.  In this new world of ours, things like that can have a surprisingly big impact.  That's one of the reasons GS is slowly losing its shine IMO.

 

Biggest institutional challenges (from limited outside-in view) are:

(i) treatment of juniors. In particular, credible harassment (incl. sexual harassment) issues that appear to have contributed to significant analyst churn with no apparent action taken by the firm. I don’t really care about what exactly did / didn’t happen, but where there is smoke there tends to be fire.

Side note: I don't think the CEO is doing the firm any favors by being on social media all the time. Just strikes me as amateurish to see a bank CEO comment on litquidity posts regularly. Scrolling socials should be well below his pay grade.

(ii) Compensation philosophy - in particular, aggressive clawbacks in comp even at (low) levels that don’t make sense. It’s fine if comp above $400-500K is deferred or has a payout schedule (as is typical at competitors), but what Jeff does seems to be much more punitive than that.

These are the “institutional” challenges that would stop someone like me from actively pursuing a career at Jeff. I work at a non-MM boutique competitor. Not trying to be a hater, just giving an honest take. Still a great firm.

 
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