Is on-cycle more or less competitive than regular IB recruiting?

Have an IB offer that I’m super happy with, but with on-cycle being more and more of a norm, I’m curious to hear how these to processes compare to each other. Will being average or near the bottom at a top firm, top group be worse for recruiting than going to a worse bank but killing it?

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There seems to be two questions here

Is On-Cycle more competitive than regular IB recruiting: I would think it is more competitive for a couple of reasons:

- There are fewer spots than in IB

- You are generally competing against others that have a higher baseline

- Many firms seem to be moving more seats away from on-cycle to off-cycle (although on-cycle processes might seem easier at the end of the analyst stint than off-cycle because of how early it is and how the funds don't expect you to know as much as they do during the off-cycle processes)

Will you have a better outcome at a worse group, better analyst ranking vs. better group, worse analyst ranking: I think you will almost universally be better off at the better group. HHs don't reach out based on analyst rankings but instead group rankings and so you probably won't get hit up for the same opps. at the worse group. Secondly, given how early on-cycle is there's no discernable way of figuring out who's a better analyst / rankings. 


Within a top group, like MS or EVR M&A, how much would GPA matter? Would a 3.3 vs 3.7 GPA make a difference to recruiters? Would it matter as much as school, target v non-target?


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