Exiting Analysts

I understand that many I-banking analysts leave for other opportunities after two years as an analyst. I also understand that in many cases, they do not want to deal with the unbelievable hours and stress. Most of what I hear is that these analysts leave for private equity or hedge funds. However, I have heard many stories about the hours being not much better, if at all, and even more stress. I realize that this all depends on where you work and for which compnay, but is it just as likely (in general) that your pe and hf jobs after you leave i-banking will require hours almost as long and be more stressful than being an analyst? If so, then what do some of these former analysts who do not want long hours anymore do? There have to be more exit opportunities than just pe and hf (and hopefully some with a lighter work schedule).

I guess I am looking for anyone to post what their former-analyst friends who did not go into pe or hf decided to do.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

Comments (11)

Jun 29, 2006 - 3:36pm
  1. I know one girl who went to medical school,

  2. another girl and guy in my class went into equity research (much better hours)

  3. 3 of us went in PE or a fund of funds

  4. 2 are still in banking at another firm

  5. one is at HBS, one at Wharton

i've heard of people going back to school for graduate degrees and making big career changes, but the liklihood is that if you were interested in finance to begin with, survived your analyst years and got used to the money....you are probably going to do something that is similar and gives you similar earning potential.

Plus, the difference between working 70hrs a week on average and 85hrs a week on avergae is HUGE. Those incremental 15 hours are much more significant than say 50hrs vs. 65hrs. Marginal utility of each hour is very high by teh time you hit 85+. so while the hours may be as bad in PE or hedge funds, often they are slightly better which makes a significant difference.

Jun 30, 2006 - 12:23am

I really think it varies...in my case, i work for a middle-market PE firm and I work between 60-70 hrs a week which is a big improvement over the 90hrs a week i worked in iBanking.

yes, i think our society is a bit obsessed with money, but the trade-off of going into "high" finance like iBanking, PE or HFs is that you sacrifice personal life for being able to retire earlier or build a fortune much quicker than the avg guy. What other job can you be making $200k 3 years out college, or even 2 years! That to me is insane.

if you're all about having an extensive social life, and that is a MUST, then it just might not be for you.

overall, you can expect a steady improvement in your social life as you get closer to your 30s...you'll still have to do bad hours from time to time, but if the hours are not consistently bad the job is much more doable.

i guess i wouldn't call it depressing, i'd call it reality. Remember: you every right to go into some other field, work 40hrs a week, get your paycheck, have a great social life and be very happy.

  • Anonymous Monkey's picture
  • Anonymous Monkey
  • Rank: Chimp
Jun 30, 2006 - 10:02am

bananna man and nychimp,

would either of you be willing to chat offline regarding middle market PE shops and making the transition over from banking? im not in what I would call a top group and wanted to know what your thoughts were but dont really want to get into details on a public message board

Jul 25, 2006 - 2:50am

Being buy-side now and former Equity sales, I would advise against doing equity research. you work a lot of hours still, but instead of a banking MD yelling at you it's the lead coverage. If you do become lead coverage, you make less cash than sales or traders unless you are a marquee name and can really move big stocks...
Go buy-side, you really get to test your ideas and get paid for what YOU produce. way better than just following orders for a paycheck.

Jul 24, 2006 - 10:12pm

Fund of funds may be a good exit. I don't think many at the associate-level at FR hit 60 hrs. Wasn't sure on the comp, but I want to say the average was in the half mil range. Lots of older, experienced folks, though. Fair number of CFAs, too.

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