For those who love finance

I certainly see plenty of "DON'T go into IB!" posts and comments. I am entering the industry soon, as I love the subject. I enjoy the research, the modeling, and the analysis. I can't say I know what I am in for, as I have never worked more than 60 hours in a week. My main question is; if you have sincere interest in finance, will working in IB be as bad as so many claim? Additionally, what are some positive things that you have experienced while working in IB?

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Comments (23)

Feb 22, 2021 - 8:24pm

Honestly, I am so confused at this point. This is one of the most coveted jobs in the finance industry. Then all I see is how much people hate working at the job they have worked so hard to get. I have set myself up for an analyst role at a boutique bank. I guess I need to see it though to make my own decision, but I appreciate the feedback dudes.

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  • Intern in IB-M&A
Feb 22, 2021 - 9:20pm

You get paid +$100k/yr right out of college to make powerpoints. Compare that to jobs that pay a similar amount - if you're a doctor/lawyer then you don't start having a positive net wealth until you're clear in your 40s (law/med school are extremely expensive, doctors make crap as interns/residents/etc.), and those jobs are harder (doctor) or more boring (lawyer). You work as much as you do in IB during this time, so you're working 100+ hours/week and still going into debt at $50k or more/semester.

Sure, software engineering is sick if you like programming, but not everyone does. Along with that, you aren't guaranteed a good salary at a startup (which everyone thinks is the holy grail on here for some reason) and getting a job as a Google SWE is 1000x harder than landing at a BB/EB. So in other words, the grass isn't always greener because you either won't ever get to cash in your $2mm worth of hypothetical SBC (the company could go under long before then) and you'll almost definitely not end up at the companies that provide the sweetest perks with the highest pay.

Your risk-adjusted return is much higher in banking, it leads to other jobs that are more interesting where you'll make upwards of $500k/yr in 10-15 years, and if you end up hating it you can potentially lateral to an F500 finance division making 1.5-2x as much as if you had started out and been internally promoted at the company. 

The job is boring and you sacrifice a lot, but it has some nice perks if you go through the ringer at first. If you REALLY want an interesting job in the finance world (and you like the markets) then try to stomach the risk of working at a HF. Or, go to a long-only mutual fund. The work is fascinating there but there are very few seats and there's always the chance you lose your seat because you couldn't outperform an ETF

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Feb 22, 2021 - 9:48pm

It's not the work it's the mental and physical stress you put yourself to. I never cared about mental health until my first day on the desk 

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Ind
Feb 23, 2021 - 10:35am

Lawyers don't have positive networth until their 40s? Are you trying to spread misinfo or are you just bad at math?

FYI, if you go to biglaw you start at 210+ all in at age 24 assuming you started law school at 21. 

Feb 23, 2021 - 8:45am
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