Hi all, for some time I have realized that the best way for me to break into IB is to start in accounting. Since I am starting in audit, I am wondering which firm is a better starting place: EY or KPMG.
I guess the most important question I have is: Does it matter?
OP continued at end
How to Move from Big 4 to Investment Banking
Breaking into investment banking from accounting can be difficult, but it has been done by several members of the WSO forum. If your end goal is investment banking, then your position and how well you network will probably make more of a difference than which Big 4 you work for. Here are some thoughts from other WSO members.
Focus on Non-Audit Roles
From Certified Investment Banking Professional - Vice President @Bullet-Tooth Tony
More important than EY vs. KPMG is your ability to move towards a non-audit role (i.e. TAS, Valuation, etc.).
Consider Industry Exposure
From Certified Consulting Professional - Principal @spinergy
KPMG is buying out Rothstein Kass to up their HF audit client base. If you're going the audit -> banking role the important thing is going to be industry exposure so check which firm has a larger financial services client list.
Take Advantage of Big City Networking
From Certified Investment Banking Professional - 2nd Year Associate @guyfromct
Being in a big city is an advantage assuming you'll be in one with a large finance community (e.g. NYC, Chicago, SF, Dallas, Houston), however there are several big cities that have a very small finance scene.
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Want to Break into Investment Banking?
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KPMG would be in a major city, and EY would be just outside of a major city but with pretty big/reputable clients, as well. Since KPMG is in a major city, that makes me lean towards them... however, I already know people who started in EY audit and have transitioned into positions at boutique IB firms. In addition, it seems to be the general consensus that KPMG is "the worst big 4," and I don't know how much that would hurt me going forward. As far as company goes, I am leaning EY but it would be more inconvenient since KPMG is in major city.
Thanks for all of your help in advance everyone, try to keep the accountant bashing to a minimum on this post if possible! =)