equity sales vs. ibd experience

i have a full-time ibd offer in a good group at a good BB, but have also been looking into different things that may offer better lifestyle / proximity to my significant other.

Can anyone speak as to equity sales vs. ibd in terms of lifestyle / day to day work experience (i summered in IBD so perhaps focus more on the equity sales experience..)?

Keep in mind that i'm not fully committed to a career in finance -- i want to get some work experience out of college before i decide whether or not I want to go to grad school / or other potential next steps. I have already applied to grad programs, and will be deferring them, so I don't necessarily need work experience as a resume booster in that regard.

Mainly looking to do something worthwhile / interesting for the next 1-2 years-- thoughts?

Comments (25)

Jan 25, 2010

The Eq Sales lifestyle is better than IBD. You typically start around 6:30am, but finish around 6:00pm. And compensation is still good.

That said, the exit opportunities from Eq Sales are drastically worse than IBD, and so if you're not sure about finance, this could be an issue. Eq Salespeople usually stay in Sales for a long time, or move to HFs.

I think Eq Sales may be particularly unsuited to you, because in your first 1-2 years you do very little. You won't have any proper clients, and there isn't much else of value you can do for the desk. Grads are usually stuck with databasing, organising analyst meetings, newsflow circulars, and the like. The experience you pick up in 2 years of IBD sets you up for moves to B-School, corporate roles, consulting, PE, VC, and much more. Eq Sales doesn't.

Jan 25, 2010

Lets face it. Sophomore year you barley know what finance is. Junior year: you hear job titles and salaries so you get interested. You get a taste at the internship. Senior year: you think you know. Sales and Trading = $$ and better hours! Post graduate: Your at the desk and realize your wrong.

IB is by far the best way to get into a transaction, learn the players and understand how the business works. Obama is going to kill prop desks so unless you are going to a hedge fund forget about trading. Sales side trading is all fed the the I Bankers. As a general rule its always good to be at the top of the pyramid.

In IB you certainly put in the hours, but you have a salary to show for it. More importantly, as mentioned above, its all about the next move, the exit ops. You can go anywhere from IB.

Jan 27, 2010

"Sales side trading is all fed the the I Bankers."

this is not true.

"In IB you certainly put in the hours, but you have a salary to show for it. More importantly, as mentioned above, its all about the next move, the exit ops. You can go anywhere from IB."

this is more true. the exit ops from trading are limited.

Jan 27, 2010

Two polar industries in terms of work and lifestyle..what do you wanna do?

Jan 27, 2010
Bernankey:

Two polar industries in terms of work and lifestyle..what do you wanna do?

Good point.

My initial goal was to land a BB or strong MM in investment banking... I am from a non-target school with a not-so-stellar gpa 3.2-3.4, but I do have some awesome connections (thankfully) and experiences within banking (dealing with debt, not M&A) and an LBO focused PE firm.

With that background, I am still very interesting in working in banking, but realize with the job market and extreme competition, I might have to have a plan B. A position within equity sales came up, which is a field I am not familiar with, so that is where I am today.

Jan 27, 2010

Ask that person if you can spend 2 hours on the trading floor with them just shadowing...if you like what you see then that should be your guide..personally, i cant imagine sitting in a cubicle after working on the floor.

Jan 27, 2010

definitely IBD dude. great exit opps, learn a lot. basically all the benefits of S&T except prob more money and less risk plus exit opps.

Jan 27, 2010

Investment Banking: P/E, Top MBA, Hedge Funds, Management Consulting, etc.

S&T: Maybe hedge funds, MBA

Pay is around the same. Most BB's S&T are not as prestigious or hard to get into as Investment Banking, so go for IBD and you prob have an easier time moving around than if you were S&T and tried to do banking.

Ignore that gov't crap. The exit ops don't care. First off, you're not going to KKR from sales/trading anyways. Secondly, all the top firms and MBAs know that more than half of the BB's are under gov't stake and all of them took some funding. In 1-3 years (when you are out of banking) you'll reap the rewards of there being less bankers on the street to compete with as well as the fact that the economy should be back up to normal (non bubble).

I'm at a BB where the gov't basically stepped in to force a merger and we are doing fine. Exit ops are good and at the end of the day, realize that only about the 10 or so BB's are owning the street (along with 5-7 elite boutiques) and you are in a very good position.

Jan 27, 2010

Also, 1st year, that quote you referenced was in response to 'advice' posted by a knowledgeable forum member like yourself, sternmasta.

Jan 27, 2010

pm'ed you

Jan 27, 2010

walkingthepath - thanks for the PM, I hit you back.

Everyone else, your insights are greatly appreciated.

Jan 27, 2010

You are not an entrepreneur in sales. You are a bottom feeding "yes" man given 0 responsibility and expected to kiss @ss over the phone and perform simple transactional activities that a 10 year old could do while being disrespected by traders. The only people lower than you are the operations back office kids. Plus after 2-3 years you will be kicked out on the street and jobless.

Go ask yourself why so many sales analysts are now teachers or at crappy consultant firms. The bankers all go back to Bschool or into buyside.

    • 1
Jan 27, 2010

.

Jan 27, 2010

What's wrong with my advice? I'm at a BB for IBD and I'm telling you Sales has almost no exit ops compared to banking. If you want to allow yourself the MOST amount of open doors in the future, then do Investment Banking.

Cruz: Meanwhile from your posts you are a quite ugly materialistic prestige whore girl who has yet to graduate and constantly makes dumb posts and questions ranging form hedge funds to IB to S&T. Stick to one and do some research outside of WSO instead of spamming threads with useless questions.

"If I'm a girl and am applying for S&T with the hopes of getting trading, will I get stuck in sales or would a guy get trading over me? "

tsk tsk tsk

Jan 27, 2010

While its true that sales doesn't boast the same exit opps as IBD, it's a great career nonetheless. The hours are marginally worse than trading, but much better than IBD for one. You will very rarely have to give up weekends and will have a life outside of work. As you gain more responsibility, you'll have to do a lot of networking to thicken your rolodex (business dinners, road shows, maybe golf..). These things should be covered by your bank and end up being one of the big perks (I believe Goldman had a dinner allowance of $500 a person for sales dinners with clients back when things were good).

The flipside is the pressure is ridiculous, somebody on the other end of the line could blow up on you anyday and you can never afford to be off the ball. Furthermore, if your product dries up on you (think structured credit), you'll have a tough time finding a new job, particularly later in your career.

Your experience will vary greatly depending on your product. Cash equities is quite simple and mainly requires you to be personable, and will always be in demand somewhere. That of course comes with lower compensation compared to other products. A few years ago, exotic credit was the place to be, the average MD was pulling 4 mil. That came with long hours and a decent amount of structuring and deal work, something you might miss in simpler products if you're looking for more analytical work. Problem is, those guys are unemployed now for the most part.

In the end, it comes down to what you want to be doing a few years from now. If you want to be doing something analytical (IB/PE/fundamental HFs), IBD will put you way ahead of sales. If you want to do something trading-oriented (S&T and trading-focused HFs) for lack of a better word, sales could be your spot.

Jan 27, 2010

Goodbread, reallly appreciate that post. Already had made a decision, but that helped to reaffirm I made the best choice for me. Thanks.

Jan 27, 2010

What'd you pick?

Jan 27, 2010

.

Jan 27, 2010

Cruz: Your posts are full of lies and you posted concerning many tier 2 firms. You lack simple knowledge such as "How does S&T work.. how do I get placed?"

I don't think you know what you're doing besides being a materialistic prestige whore that has too much time. I'm pretty sure I know what IBD exit ops are given the peers who have jumped to buyside before me. Meanwhile, you are a college forum troll on a message board. Case closed.

And actually I think I'm the one who hit a nerve seeing as you posted a wall of text. Exactly what I expect from an insecure tool. Good luck with your job search bro.

Jan 27, 2010

The only tier 2 firm I referenced is the one you work at!

The only stupid question I've asked is the one you referenced, in response to a piece of "advice" from a troll such as yourself!

The wall of text was advice to the OP - don't flatter yourself, you're barely worth a line! hahaha.....

Jan 27, 2010

wannabebankerman is just as bad. I think he's a junior looking for an internship. He should get a job first, or at least spend some time on a trading floor, before saying stuff like "The only people lower than you are the operations back office kids." His posts are bad advice masquerading as good advice, and people like him are a serious problem here. He doesn't know shit and pretends he does.

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Jan 27, 2010
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