Commercial Banking Career Path?

Does anyone know what the typical career path for commercial banking is along with compensation at each level, as well as if I'd need to get an MBA or CFA at some point? If not, could someone tell me about a forum that's more dedicated to "other" finance careers besides i-banking, consulting, etc.? This is a really good site, but it doesn't have too much info on the less prestigious careers like corporate finance, commercial banking and all that, so yeah. If anyone can help me out, that would be great.

commercial bank careers

In commercial banking you will usually start out as a credit analyst helping to underwrite various loan requests. Then you would advance into a relationship manager role or stay in the underwriting side of the business before eventually becoming a credit officer.

One user shared some details about the commercial banking job market.

TexasMonkey1868 - Private Equity Associate:

Currently it is VERY competitive, because interest rates remain low, and banks can't make money off bonds (or other investments) like they use too. What this translates too is grow loans, without growing staff. The higher up you go, even if your a regional president at big bank, the more your expected to produce, so to avoid sales you usually have to go the admin., ops, or other back office. This is especially true to community banking (which is boring, again in my opinion).

My reccomendation to someone considering commercial banking is try to get on a big bank (JPM, BOA, WFC, Compass, CIti) anyone that offers a credit training program, because that is what all the community banks look for, so it gives you a lot options in the future.

Commercial Banking Salary and Lifestyle

hangman:

Pros: Decent money to buy your toys, get married, stable, lots of time, wine and dine on companies dine. If you are top sales, they will buy you trips to exotic (cheaper) places. Top 5% could make $1/2 a million, i'm top 20% and make $175-200k. I really work

Cons: Commodity business, clients will get your term sheet and give it to another bank. A lot of dumb asses surround you, lots of politics, some old farts don't want to leave because life is good. Bosses and support staffs are not there to help you but F around.

You can learn more about this topic with the below video.

You can read more about this in a thread about Commercial Banking Compensation.

Read More About Commercial Banking on WSO

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Comments (96)

 
7/8/09

Definitely not a CFA.
People in IB like to give commercial banking a lot of shit. NO, it is not the same thing as retail banking. NO, you are not necessarily "creating value" for the company. However, there are some important skills involved in underwriting and servicing a loan. However, in order to make money, you need to actually get on to the company's banking roster. This requires relationships, so an MBA would be valuable for comm banking for the same reason IB analysts go back to school even if they plan on moving up the IB ranks.

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7/8/09

hey, thanks for the answer. I guess I'll just keep trying to ask this elsewhere before I get flamed xD.

I just realized, however, that there is something that this site might be able to help me with. I'm interested in operations at a BB bank. The problem is, I go to a non-target, so how hard would it be to break into that if I keep a high GPA?

I'm not really looking at being a financial analyst for the BB, and I know that a reason people trash operations here is because you can't move to the front office easily, but I'm not too concerned about that. I mostly want to use the work experience to get an MBA and move up the ladder. So how hard would it be to break into back office from a non-target?

Also, what is the career path for operations at the bank, and what does the work deal with? When I think of operations, I think of things like supply chains and that sort of thing, so is that what they do at a BB as well?

thanks again

 
7/8/09

If you're interested in finance, commercial banking or internal finance >>>> ops
If you just want to be able to say "I work at [insert prestigiuos name]", then look into ops

Judging by your post, I'd say you are the first one. I've got to think commercial banking would be better for mba admissions then ops as well, but I'm not sure.

 
7/8/09
pantherdb26:

If you're interested in finance, commercial banking or internal finance >>>> ops
If you just want to be able to say "I work at [insert prestigiuos name]", then look into ops

Judging by your post, I'd say you are the first one. I've got to think commercial banking would be better for mba admissions then ops as well, but I'm not sure.

The thing with finance is, although I don't mind crunching numbers and interacting with clients, I DO NOT enjoy sales whatsoever, and I've read that the higher positions in i-banking and commercial banking both involve a lot of sales. I know for sure that sales is not something I'd be good at since I'm a fairly passive person that doesn't like to push things on people, and not the pushy, type A personality that those kinds of jobs require.

In addition, I think I'd be happy in operations. I think the supply chain, e-business kind of things (if that's even what they do at the Bulge Brackets) are interesting, and I really don't mind working behind the scenes doing the little things that keep the company afloat, which is I think what ops is about regardless of where you're at. So if I'd be happy in OPERATIONS, FORGET THE FINANCE, JUST OPERATIONS, is it a decent career path if I start at a BB? I'm not even looking to get filthy rich, so as long as I'd be in the 150-200k range after a few years, I'd be happy with my life, so can I do that in ops?

Also again, is it even possible to break into ops from a non-target if I keep a great GPA (I'm aiming for no less than 3.6-3.7), or would I just get trashed based off of my school?

 
7/9/09

Aren't I-bankers in the 150-200k range after a few years (assuming that would be a third year analyst)?

 
7/9/09

In commercial banking, most entry-level (i.e. newly college grads) start as some form of a credit analyst, underwriting various loan requests. From there, assuming you excel, you can branch into a relationship-manager type position (i.e. lender) or stay in the credit-administration side (underwriting) and move into Sr. Analyst positions and ultimately some form of Credit Officer.

That's the basic gist of it. Obviously with different banks/sizes, there are other options, but that's the traditional path. Lending or credit analysis.

 
2/15/13
San Ford:

In commercial banking, most entry-level (i.e. newly college grads) start as some form of a credit analyst, underwriting various loan requests. From there, assuming you excel, you can branch into a relationship-manager type position (i.e. lender) or stay in the credit-administration side (underwriting) and move into Sr. Analyst positions and ultimately some form of Credit Officer.

That's the basic gist of it. Obviously with different banks/sizes, there are other options, but that's the traditional path. Lending or credit analysis.

This is exactly right. If your not into sales than you need to do ops, or some form of risk managment...which is different in commercial banking, i.e. loan documentation and basic cash flow, things of that nature. Commercial banking is pretty easy when compared to other finance jobs, in my opinion. Currently it is VERY competitive, because interest rates remain low, and banks can't make money off bonds (or other investments) like they use too. What this translates too is grow loans, without growing staff. The higher up you go, even if your a regional president at big bank, the more your expected to produce, so to avoid sales you usually have to go the admin., ops, or other back office. This is especially true to community banking (which is boring, again in my opinion).

My reccomendation to someone considering commercial banking is try to get on a big bank (JPM, BOA, WFC, Compass, CIti) anyone that offers a credit training program, because that is what all the community banks look for, so it gives you a lot options in the future.

 
2/6/10

You won't break six figures for a while in operations.

 
2/6/10

If the OP isn't interested in sales than just go into ops. Frankly, sales at a higher end relationship manager level is more of an advisory role vs cold calling people ala Boiler Room. If you can't sell yourself then ops probably is the best place for you.

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2/15/13

What kind of options, outside of commercial banking, do you think someone would have after going through a couple years of this at JPM, WF, etc.?

 
2/23/13

bump ^^^ curious to question above me

 
3/11/13

Bump, also curious about the above question. ^^

 
3/11/13
Yankees993:

Bump, also curious about the above question. ^^

There are several threads on this topic (I've attempted to contribute to them).

Aside from moving up the ranks inside the corporate banks, you may be able to move to mezz groups, distressed debt groups/funds (if you work on the ABL side with SS, DIP), and POSSIBLY IBD (going to need a connection and a grad degree wouldn't hurt).

If you go get an MBA or CFA, you could move into IBD/PE or portfolio mgmt potentially. No situation is the same, but I've seen more guys at mezz, unitranche (BDCs) and SS HF/PE groups from commercial banking.

 
 
3/11/13

PM me if you want some info. I worked in CB for a year before transferring to IB.

 
3/11/13

I have been in commercial banking for 2 years, but am currently looking to switch into IB. You can also PM me for some insight as well.

 
 
3/11/13

Its not hard. I interned in one of Mega cap commercial bank in relation managment/marketing which is a salesjob in my Freshmen year.

umm if you are not good salesperson, get a Credit Analyst positition.

So in credit anlayst job you deal with business fundermental analysis/ financial ratios.

Big banks have both large corp dept and mid-small business dept.

It's an easy 8-5 job for junior. If you get in mega cap commerical banks such as BAC,JPM,C,WFC 150k in 10 years is pretty much guaranteed. And compare to IBank its much safer job than you think, PLUS its less political and ppl are easier to talk to.

That being said, it does look down by IBD bankers. But who cares you get to be on your bed at 11pm.

 
3/11/13
grad10:

Its not hard. I interned in one of Mega cap commercial bank in relation managment/marketing which is a salesjob in my Freshmen year.

umm if you are not good salesperson, get a Credit Analyst positition.

So in credit anlayst job you deal with business fundermental analysis/ financial ratios.

Big banks have both large corp dept and mid-small business dept.

It's an easy 8-5 job for junior. If you get in mega cap commerical banks such as BAC,JPM,C,WFC 150k in 10 years is pretty much guaranteed. And compare to IBank its much safer job than you think, PLUS its less political and ppl are easier to talk to.

That being said, it does look down by IBD bankers. But who cares you get to be on your bed at 11pm.

Thank you for your reply! That was pretty helpful. The main thing I'm worried about is breaking into any position, because I go to a shitty state school. Although my school isn't as random as something in North Dakota (I guess I'm being a bit hard on my school. It's well recognized in my region, the NW, and has all the Big 4, many large nationals, and many CPA firms recruit there) or something, it definitely isn't wharton, so I'm worried about getting any job outside of accounting. That's why I'm really concerned about breaking in.

Is there anything I can do to stand out? Aside from absolutely DESTROYING my classes (which I'm really motivated to do), can I stand out by having a good quant background as well for example? I was thinking about minoring in math, so could that help me in any way, or would that be a waste of time?

Also, if possible, could you tell me a bit more about credit analysts? You mentioned that you're in sales, so is that mainly what commercial banking is involved in, or are there plenty of jobs for credit analysts as well?

Sorry for all the questions, but it would be great if you could help me out since I have no clue what I'm doing.

 
3/11/13

I did an internship in commercial banking this summer. The job is a joke, 8-6 work with 2 hour lunches every day often times paid for by the company. You start off as a credit analyst making about 40k, but after 3 years you move up to a lender position making 120k plus at least 15k bonus in 2008. I worked as a credit analyst in Miami at one of the largest canadian banks. The people are laid back and the offices are very nice. Its a bit hard to break in, though. Right now, you either need an internship to get a job offer or lots of experience from another bank doing the same thing you are applying for. Its much easier to break in as a credit analyst.

 
3/11/13

I did an internship in commercial banking this summer. The job is a joke, 8-6 work with 2 hour lunches every day often times paid for by the company. You start off as a credit analyst making about 40k, but after 3 years you move up to a lender position making 120k plus at least 15k bonus in 2008. I worked as a credit analyst in Miami at one of the largest canadian banks. The people are laid back and the offices are very nice. Its a bit hard to break in, though. Right now, you either need an internship to get a job offer or lots of experience from another bank doing the same thing you are applying for. Its much easier to break in as a credit analyst.

Well, I'm still a sophomore in college (or at least I will be beginning my sophomore year very shortly), so hopefully I still have time to get some internships, or should I have started last summer only? I've only got a shitty job for this summer, but hopefully by the next summer I can do something more meaningful.

Would majoring in accounting hurt me though in terms of scoring one of these positions? As I mentioned, my school isn't an ivy league, so I was considering doing accounting (even though I f-ing hate that shit) because it will offer more job opportunities for me from my school since all the major firms recruit here, or should I just major in finance and minor in accounting and econ/math (would a minor in econ or math be better)?

Also, you move to 120k in 3 years and the job is easy? If you make that much money (to me and most people, that's a good amount of change), the job is easy, and it's not as competitive, then why don't more people do commercial banking? Did you find the work extremely boring while working there or something? Also, how much sales stuff did you have to do?

 
3/11/13
accountingmymoney:

I did an internship in commercial banking this summer. The job is a joke, 8-6 work with 2 hour lunches every day often times paid for by the company. You start off as a credit analyst making about 40k, but after 3 years you move up to a lender position making 120k plus at least 15k bonus in 2008. I worked as a credit analyst in Miami at one of the largest canadian banks. The people are laid back and the offices are very nice. Its a bit hard to break in, though. Right now, you either need an internship to get a job offer or lots of experience from another bank doing the same thing you are applying for. Its much easier to break in as a credit analyst.

Well, I'm still a sophomore in college (or at least I will be beginning my sophomore year very shortly), so hopefully I still have time to get some internships, or should I have started last summer only? I've only got a shitty job for this summer, but hopefully by the next summer I can do something more meaningful.

Would majoring in accounting hurt me though in terms of scoring one of these positions? As I mentioned, my school isn't an ivy league, so I was considering doing accounting (even though I f-ing hate that shit) because it will offer more job opportunities for me from my school since all the major firms recruit here, or should I just major in finance and minor in accounting and econ/math (would a minor in econ or math be better)?

Also, you move to 120k in 3 years and the job is easy? If you make that much money (to me and most people, that's a good amount of change), the job is easy, and it's not as competitive, then why don't more people do commercial banking? Did you find the work extremely boring while working there or something? Also, how much sales stuff did you have to do?

Major in Acct will only be a plus, the business fundermental analysis is heavily accounting based.

ppl choose IBD or other high finance career over commercial banks is simply because they follow the trend which Wall Street in popular culture always seems more appealing and more prestige. But time has changed now, Wall Street will not be what it used to be. Because of deleveraging, meaning less profit margin which also means less pay.

And I think you can make more in American Mega cap banks compare to Canandian no offence

I was never a real Credit Anlyst but I did a little credit Analysis as a relation managment intern. so like I said you do basic financial ratio anlaysis check company liquidity, debt ratio, profitblity, downside risk, etc... sales force in a commercial bank is like you said commission based career and credit anlayst is the support and research force. both are considered front office I think, so they are equally important.
Check a compnay website, career services or Vault guide. there is a lot of resource you can use

 
3/11/13

One thing I'll add is that if you do take a job at a commercial bank, try to lateral into the workout group after two or three years of developing your credit skills in the analyst position. In that group you'll deal with problem loans - from corporate to real estate - and will be more marketable than you'd be with just the typical credit analyst skillset.

 
3/11/13

Your major isnt that important as long as its business. Accounting will be fine for a credit analyst position.
As far as making 150k, there are some things you need to understand. First, the job is easy but its pretty competitive to get there. I just finished my sophomore year at a top 5 bschool (not wharton but very close) and barely got the internship. Most of the other interns were from name brand schools like penn state, notre dame, and villanova with at least a 3.7 gpa and they were all rising seniors. After you start, you have to be at the top of your game to get promoted to a lender position, which is 100% sales. Otherwise you get pushed into an account manager role with 70k and no bonus. A lot of AMs are people who didnt make it as a lender so they get pushed back. If youre not into sales then this might not be the career for you.
Also, at mega banks such as Wells Fargo, I heard lenders make 70k base plus over 100k bonus in a good year. At my canadian bank everyone was talking about how all the lenders from american banks didnt get a bonus last year. I know we picked up a guy from another bank that was the no. 1 lender at another bank because he left. Many people also get fired. If you dont meet your sales goals youre done.
Alas there might be a way for you. There is a very rare position called senior risk analyst. The pay is higher than a lender, but there is usually only one of these for each market. Thus its very very hard to get. Its basically executive level and I have no idea how to get that job. Your the guy that has to sign off on every loan and you decide what goes through and what doesnt.
Oh and a credit analyst is considered to be part of operations and is thus a cost center. Back office, no sales. I know it sounds bad but this is a career path where you can actually get out of operations after a few years.
I hope this helps.

 
3/11/13
da bog:

Your major isnt that important as long as its business. Accounting will be fine for a credit analyst position.
As far as making 150k, there are some things you need to understand. First, the job is easy but its pretty competitive to get there. I just finished my sophomore year at a top 5 bschool (not wharton but very close) and barely got the internship. Most of the other interns were from name brand schools like penn state, notre dame, and villanova with at least a 3.7 gpa and they were all rising seniors. After you start, you have to be at the top of your game to get promoted to a lender position, which is 100% sales. Otherwise you get pushed into an account manager role with 70k and no bonus. A lot of AMs are people who didnt make it as a lender so they get pushed back. If youre not into sales then this might not be the career for you.
Also, at mega banks such as Wells Fargo, I heard lenders make 70k base plus over 100k bonus in a good year. At my canadian bank everyone was talking about how all the lenders from american banks didnt get a bonus last year. I know we picked up a guy from another bank that was the no. 1 lender at another bank because he left. Many people also get fired. If you dont meet your sales goals youre done.
Alas there might be a way for you. There is a very rare position called senior risk analyst. The pay is higher than a lender, but there is usually only one of these for each market. Thus its very very hard to get. Its basically executive level and I have no idea how to get that job. Your the guy that has to sign off on every loan and you decide what goes through and what doesnt.
Oh and a credit analyst is considered to be part of operations and is thus a cost center. Back office, no sales. I know it sounds bad but this is a career path where you can actually get out of operations after a few years.
I hope this helps.

Dammit, I hate sales, so looks like I'm out. Operations is actually something I'm interested in. I'm more of a behind the scenes kind of guy, so I wouldn't mind staying in that as long as there is SOME quantitative work. But shit, looks like I'm going to have to create a new thread about corporate finance, since that's basically my only other option from a non-target. FML.

The mods can lock this thread I suppose since I won't really need it.

 
 
3/11/13

Wow, I guess brains don't grow on trees anymore.
Think about your question, and forget whatever categories you and your friends have come up with over the years.
Ops is a specific department within an investment bank. Have a guess what they do? They work on the operating aspects of the bank- things like real estate management, supplies procurement, and at its best, helping to clear trades and software support. These are considered back office tasks, as you are not directly generating revenue for the firm. However, not all non-investment banking positions are ops. What would the logic be for you to place a credit analyst under this category? While they are not exactly generating revenue for the firm, are they simply preparing the documentation for a calling officer, or do they actually UW and approve the deal?
Think about it, and get back to us with the answer.

 
3/11/13

Credit analysts, depending on what you're analyzing, is generally considered a front office position. It's a very, very broad term, though... lots of different types of credit analysts.

In either event, credit analysis is NOT ops.

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3/11/13

No, commercial banking is not considered ops or back office. I have a friend that joined the commercial banking analyst program at BofA and had a great experience. He said although the pay isn't as great as ibanking, it's pretty decent, and the quality of life/hours are much better.

He has graduated from the program and now runs a credit portfolio for various clients. Basically, large institutions come to him on a day to day basis and ask him what types of products he can offer to meet their liquidity needs (usually revolvers and stuff like that).

Hope this helps!

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3/11/13

Business School...Make sure its at least top 25 if you want a decent shot.

 
3/11/13

Melbourne Uni MBA

Big 4 Accounting Guide to Getting Hired Contains interview questions, exactly how to answer, resume guide, how to make an impact and a guide to the firms and service lines.

 
3/11/13

^^ Correct, you wont getting anywhere near the street as of now, you'll have to go back to school or look at regional boutiques.

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3/11/13

I don't know about the J1 trainee arrangement but have you heard about the E3 Visa? The E3 Visa is similar to a H1B Visa but significantly cheaper. It is only for Australians to work in a skilled profession (e.g. accountant, investment banker etc)in the US. There is an annual quota of 10,000, but this quota has never come close to being reached. Once you get the Visa it can be renewed indefinitely in two year increments.

The hard part of course is getting a job in the US, especially in finance right now. Most of the smaller firms (BB I am pretty sure know about the E3) have not heard about the E3 and assume that applying for it will be as costly and drawn out as applying for a H1B.

If you can't wait for business school maybe your current employer has a US division that you could internally transfer to. Otherwise I guess you could use your accounting degree and apply for jobs in the US. Hope this helps.

 
 
3/11/13

I guess it depends on what you do in corproate banking. I work in corporate banking in an energy focused group. The job is definitely not as glamorous as an M&A advisory gig, but we work a lot with our Capital Markets Group and we also help structure deals for syndication. Day to day we have a lot of interaction with private equity customers that are looking to make acquisitions, so we often get a first look on deals. These equity customers often bypass getting a buyside opionion from an investment banker, so we're often included on the equity firm's logic and hurdles on making a deal work. The hours are not bad - 40-60 hrs/week. The pay isn't too bad ($90k, 3yrs out of school), which is common with many foreign banks. I also live in Houston, so the pay goes a long way because the cost of living is so cheap down here.

As far as exit ops are considered, you'll likely (90%+ chance) need an MBA to switch gears into i-banking or private equity. I wouldnt rule out getting into a top MBA program if you're well rounded, but the gig alone won't get you in the door at Tuck.

 
 
3/11/13

Typically you can flow to a senior credit analyst or later on a district credit officer. Usually you become an RM though.

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3/11/13

What about F500 Corpp Strategy?

 
3/11/13
 
3/11/13

Not so sure about Strategy, but F500 Treasury or Corp Fin. should be available to you (assuming a well-known program--JPM, BAML, WF, etc.).

 
3/11/13

you got a credit related fund. like a bank debt fund.

 
3/11/13

you got a credit related fund. like a bank debt fund.

 
 
3/11/13

Not in CB, but work with a lot.

1) Depends on the bank. Relationship managers generally wine and dine and are the dealmakers (generally VP or SVP level). Loan officers is a step below and have more to do with underwriting, structuring and diligence of actual transactions, usually brought in by the relationship mgrs.

2) Again, it somewhat depends on the bank, but generally speaking, a model similar to the traditional lbo model (most models from BBs have switches so you can go from LBO to Recap). Rather than focusing on returns, the bank is monitoring cash and leverage levels. Also, depending on the bank and group, some run asset-based models where the company has to maintain specific asset coverage levels (i.e. discounted AR/AP/Inv). It just depends on the deal, the bank, and the team.

Banks focus on credit statistics (i.e. Fixed Charge Coverage Ratio, Total (Senior) Debt/EBITDA, Net Total (Senior) Debt/EBITDA, etc.)

3) Credit analyst is a good place to start if you are coming out of undergrad. I know some associates from HLHZ M&A that moved to commercial/corporate banking and serve as relationship managers (AVP level). Start out as a credit analyst, move up to underwriter/loan officer, then to AVP/VP relationship manager role.

Going to be hard for you to lateral to a relationship manager/biz dev type role b/c you don't really know the business. You have to understand credit and loan metrics and what types of loan structures and qualities your bank and its group looks for. To do so, you need to start lower if you aren't coming from direct experience IMO.

 
3/11/13
biggity:

Hello everybody. I'm considering moving to commercial banking and have a couple questions for the wisdom of the masses.

1. What's the difference between a 'commercial loan officer' and a 'relationship manager'?
2. What are the typical financial models commercial bankers use (I assume they're all cash flow related)?
3. What's the typical entry point for a career in commercial banking? Seems like credit analyst is where everyone starts.

Appreciate your help. For some info, I'm in my 20s, a research analyst at a research firm (think Gartner). Basic financial knowledge so far - can read and link the 3 financial statements. I'd like to move into more business development at a commercial bank than modelling. Which commercial banking gig do you think would fit me best?

Answers and general thoughts on my situation are really appreciated!

 
3/11/13
biggity:

Hello everybody. I'm considering moving to commercial banking and have a couple questions for the wisdom of the masses.

1. What's the difference between a 'commercial loan officer' and a 'relationship manager'?
2. What are the typical financial models commercial bankers use (I assume they're all cash flow related)?
3. What's the typical entry point for a career in commercial banking? Seems like credit analyst is where everyone starts.

Appreciate your help. For some info, I'm in my 20s, a research analyst at a research firm (think Gartner). Basic financial knowledge so far - can read and link the 3 financial statements. I'd like to move into more business development at a commercial bank than modelling. Which commercial banking gig do you think would fit me best?

Answers and general thoughts on my situation are really appreciated!

I don't know about you, but it is not a challenging job for me. I started as a credit anal-yst at 23, then I got promoted almost every year or so. And when other RMs leave, you take their best clients, and leave the shitty ones to other junior RMs.

I suggest you stick it out at that research firm and move into a sales role.

1) depends on the bank, CLOs could be more BDO, they get lower salary and higher commission. RMs usually have existing portfolios, they get higher salary and lower commission.

2) Cash Flow either EBITDA / Debt Service or hardcore discounted accounting cash flow. And then collateral analysis discount A/R, Inv, equipment, buildings etc.

3) Credit Analyst.

Pros: Decent money to buy your toys, get married, stable, lots of time, wine and dine on companies dine. If you are top sales, they will buy you trips to exotic (cheaper) places. Top 5% could make $1/2 a million, i'm top 20% and make $175-200k. I really work

Cons: Commodity business, clients will get your term sheet and give it to another bank. A lot of dumb asses surround you, lots of politics, some old farts don't want to leave because life is good. Bosses and support staffs are not there to help you but F around.

Ping me if you want more information.

 
3/11/13

I'm looking at shifting to commercial banking as well...from investment banking...better work / life balance. Yes, I want to have kids, have time, getting married (next year)...it all sounds good to me.

How mind numbingly easy is it?

 
3/11/13

don't forget that commercial loan officer positions many times lead to higher level executive jobs at small and mid-sized banks. A friend of mine is now CEO of a small/med sized bank. Lives in the burbs, nice home, 10 minute commute, palatial office, golfs a lot with clients, seems to be enjoying himself.

 
3/11/13

I'm an RM in the Commercial Banking division of a large bank. I used to work in equity research as an Associate at a top 10 firm.

Pros in Commercial Banking vs. ER at an IB: much better work/life balance and you can live almost anywhere in the US, vs. being confined to NYC and to a lesser extent Houston and Chicago at an IB.

Cons: less interesting work than equity research, less opportunity to make $300k+ in compensation.

I work around 30-35 hours per week (at most). My base salary is $110k with bonus target of around 25% to 40% of base, depending on performance relative to sales targets. Overall, the pay is weak vs. what I was making in equity research, but the work/life balance and living in FL more than make up for it.

As you build up your portfolio and become a more senior level RM, base can get up to $150k to $180k with bonus target of 50% to 70% of base, at least at my employer.

 
 
3/11/13

I'm tempted to say Finance, but it really depends on which department you'd be working for.

If you want to do IBD, why not just start there? Being from a non-target isn't the kiss of death - look around for regional boutiques and start there. Intern for free if you must.

 
3/11/13

Tell as more about yourself. Otherwise, we will keep guessing and give you bad advice.

 
3/11/13

I go to a school that I would consider to be a tier under semi-target. There are definitely a few alumni on wall street. I am a rising senior and have been networking hard this summer for FT IBD. I am getting a decent internship experience this summer helping out (analysis for investor presentations) with raising funding for a start-up (that is doing well and is already a PE portfolio company). Which Finance groups would limit my exit opps?

 
3/11/13

We have finance groups that support teams in capital markets, ie: Debt/Equity capital markets.

Try to land one of those.

Stay away from bank operations finance, or any other group that doesn't directly support your desired destination.

How're your grades?

 
3/11/13

I wouldn't do commercial banking, especially if you're gonna be working on the retail side of things.

Prospective Banker. Gentleman. Bodybuilder.

 
3/11/13

People on WSO spit on Commercial Banking, it really isn't that bad. Its considered F.O and depending on group you can leverage your skills to transfer to IBD.

 
3/11/13

Biggest concern for me with starting at a regional boutique is lack of networking with people my age. At least in commercial banking you would have an analyst class you get trained with. Since the start-up I've been working for is in healthcare/tech I'm going to look for opportunities in those groups first.

 
3/11/13
afroman99:

I wouldn't do commercial banking, especially if you're gonna be working on the retail side of things.

The retail side of commercial..what does that mean exactly?

 
3/11/13

I think a lot people on this website confuse retail banking with commercial banking, or don't understand the difference in these divisions.
In CB you usually deal with decent size companies that need loans, and other bank products. Some of the CB do a lot of work with the IB guys, so if you lucky and place in those groups you should be able to make the transition later on, but it will largely depend on how much you network. Good luck

 
 
3/11/13

Commercial banking is broad. What area/aspect of it interests you?

 
3/11/13

Commercial banking is broad. What area/aspect of it interests you?

 
3/11/13

being a RM is most likely the ultimate goal if you stayed with a vertical. I suppose you could go the credit route and try and be a senior credit guy.

Masters in Finance HQ - The #1 site for everything related to the MSF degree!
MSFHQ

 
 
3/11/13

yes, but 1-2MM per year in Ibanking is achieved in high cost cities like NY right?

 
3/11/13

In other words, IBanking pays so much because of high cost of living where IBanking occurs.

 
3/11/13

What cities was pay quoted for? I heard of some low numbers for CB before but not sure about the geographic location.

 
3/11/13

The guy I spoke to about CB worked in Chicago for his analyst position.

 
3/11/13

PM me if you want to talk about commercial banking

Forewarning - I work in it and hate it

 
3/11/13

i know a couple MDs in charlotte who make $500,000+ in corporate banking at WF/ML no biggie. They travel all the time and get home around 7 or 9pm. ibanking pay varies at these levels but i've seen 1/2mm and ive seen 5-10mm. totally different game.

 
3/11/13

What positions are there in commercial banking?

 
3/11/13

Well from people I know, commercial banking is analyst or associate then full fledged commercial banker, VP, SVP, etc.

 
3/11/13

I know some guys who worked (work) in CB and I don't think that they've reached 400K. I could be wrong but I believe it's around low six figures.

 
3/11/13

Wallstreetballa - I tried to PM you but since I am new here, it wouldn't let me. I had some questions about commercial banking at a large Bank as I currently am at a smaller commercial Bank.

Can you PM to start the conversation?

 
3/11/13

400,000k after 10 years is highly unlikely. I know someone who has worked in CB for 20 + years and has a title that you would think brought in a fat fat salary, but in reality, commercial bankers don't make that much money - plain and simple. But, the life is relatively easy - all my friends in commercial banking say they have been working late when they leave the office later that 5:45 - it is pretty ridiculous. Not a bad gig though for work / life balance.

 
3/11/13

$400K is unlikely after 10 years unlikely - but $200-250k is not. I work for a small regional commercial Bank and my co-worker has been there 7 years and will hit $200K next year.

Also - the fact that we make that in a small market means we pretty much have the same purchasing power as someone making $400 K in NYC.

I own a 2,600 sqft home - how much you have to make to get that in NYC, SF. etc?

I think IB has a better opportunity to make $1MM and up. And they get to work on sick deals. Outside of that, I'm pretty happy with where I'm at in commercial banking.

 
3/11/13
gregt14:

$400K is unlikely after 10 years unlikely - but $200-250k is not. I work for a small regional commercial Bank and my co-worker has been there 7 years and will hit $200K next year.

Also - the fact that we make that in a small market means we pretty much have the same purchasing power as someone making $400 K in NYC.

I own a 2,600 sqft home - how much you have to make to get that in NYC, SF. etc?

I think IB has a better opportunity to make $1MM and up. And they get to work on sick deals. Outside of that, I'm pretty happy with where I'm at in commercial banking.

What do you do?

 
3/11/13

AVP / Relationship Manager.

Handle approx $100MM in credit commitments to small-mid market companies and HNW individuals.

Debt products are mainly senior secured notes. However we get creative a lot of the time.

 
 
3/11/13

You can make good money as a commercial banker but you have to put in your time to get there. MM commercial banking is corporate banking. If you're working in middle market banking at a BB they will most likely require you to get or have your Series 79. Corporate or commercial (whatever you all want to call it) banking is mostly focused around sales/relationship management and credit analysis. If you really want to be a corporate banker I would look into receiving formal credit training.

 
3/11/13

I've been in middle market commercial banking as an rm thus far about a year and have done no modeling or due diligence. I have no credit training or series anything. I do make probably 1000 dials a month to companies in the area. Career progression is to get more clients and earn more money, or to be peter principled out.

 
3/11/13

Just out of curiosity, what do you define as MM? $20M to $500M in revenue? It also may be helpful to know the size of the bank you are working for. If you are working for a sub $2B in assets bank, then yes, you are probably just going to be selling to local businesses 100% of the time.

There is a fine line sometimes between "business banking" and "commercial banking"

 
3/11/13

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3/11/13

Global buyer of highly distressed industrial companies.