Got an offer but salary is low. What should I do?

Working in corporate development (internship), and got my first offer at a US based IB Boutique for an off-cycle role.

Salary is $35,000 which seems low.

As this is my first chance to work in IB, I don't feel I'm in a place to negotiate.

Any advice?

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Comments (20)

Sep 10, 2021 - 11:43am

i'd do it. the salary is not banking but whatever you are just getting started so getting the experience and reps in is what's important. 

this will help you prepare for further recruiting at a more established shop as you now have something to talk about in interviews. 

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Sep 10, 2021 - 12:53pm

Take it and look elsewhere. 35k is what I made in a non finance internship in the IS, the salary is a joke. Then if they can't match street for full time just lateral (actually would try to lateral from day 1)

Sep 10, 2021 - 1:37pm

They seem completely legitimate.

100+ employees

Team consisting of ex-BB and a ex-EB staff

Deals page shows roughly one deal/month worth roughly(10-50mil)

Considering some people take unpaid IB roles I don't this as much of a problem, especially considering it is an internships and not FT.

I will use it as a stepping stone for sure. Unless they demand insane hours at this pay I don't see any downside to taking the role, it's certainly better the corporate development in terms of getting into a BB or EB.

Sep 10, 2021 - 1:57pm

Double checked on LinkedIn and 35/106 employees come from BBs.

I may be wrong but I didn't think boutiques matched BB wage for interns anyway? At higher levels perhaps, and in fact even more.

To be honest I've not used this forum for long and don't low how much it is used by the IB community.

The firms has various offices around the world but it wouldn't take them long to figure out who has recently been offered an intern role in the US office.

Not sure if the offer will be taken away for example, but maybe I'm overthinking.

Most Helpful
Sep 12, 2021 - 5:50am

$10-50mm deals are very very very small. That's…..ok so fees are typically 2-3% of transaction size - so for a $50mm deal they are getting a $1-1.5mm fee…they do 1 deal a month - meaning that they generate 15mm in revenue (that is being super generous, most likely deal size average is much less than $50mm). They have 100 employees (total or just investment bankers?) to feed with 15mm of revenue minus opex and overhead - that's going to be around $100k a person after overhead. Dude be glad you're getting even $35k at all. You should be getting minimum wage which is essentially close to what $35k is in NYC.

All this begs the question, who the fuck is going from a BB or an EB to this bank? This raises serious red flags for me unless you're missing massive deal volume somehow.

Also you should check to see where previous analysts at this bank have lateraled and left to. If they have 100 employees then there should be a good amount of data for you to collect on that front. This will give you a sense of the legitimacy.Honestly I would love to know the name of this bank but I respect you want to keep it private.

  • Investment Manager in HF - Other
Sep 10, 2021 - 2:23pm

What other options do you have? Experience is always better than no experience. If you trust the people there, they are reputable (sounds like you are saying that), then go get experience and leverage that into other work. 

The risk is that it is a terrible job, I haven't heard of any reputable places that pay this low, do you know what your bonus will be? It is also strange that ex-BB people would work there, put yourself in their shoes, what is the motivation to be there? Maybe it's better work life balance, maybe they pay more to the senior people, the other option is that these aren't competent people. Again, it doesn't sound like it from your posts, but that is the risk. 

Personally, I'd take the experience, that's what I did early on in my career (low paying job, but gave me an opportunity) and I found that being able to talk about real work experience in interviews was incredibly valuable. 

Sep 10, 2021 - 2:44pm

Very good advice.

If I get 2 weeks into the role and they are demanding crazy hours I will have to communicate concerns to my line manager as I would be on less then minimum wage.

I think it's a mixture between less demanding hours and seniors are paid more, which I'm fine with.

Sure money is great, but I'm there principally to learn not earn, that's essentially what an internship is.

Once I start FT I will be chasing bonuses and promotions, but I'm honestly just grateful to have finally broken into IB considering my uni is a huge no name and I've only been actively pursuing an IB career for a year, unlike some who knew they wanted to get in from they day they applied to uni.

I will accept the role, but be on the lookout for roles starting in the summer or even earlier that.

Bonus has not been revealed as of yet.

Sep 12, 2021 - 11:11am

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