How common are layoffs?

Is it possible to go through a career in finance without being laid off? Someone told me that is unusual to go through a career in finance and not be laid off a few times

WSO Elite Modeling Package

  • 6 courses to mastery: Excel, Financial Statement, LBO, M&A, Valuation and DCF
  • Elite instructors from top BB investment banks and private equity megafunds
  • Includes Company DB + Video Library Access (1 year)

Comments (13)

Feb 18, 2021 - 2:50pm

especially after the GFC, its much less common. Only really during major black swan events does it happen, and I would argue its fairly predictable who gets laid-off. Usually newer teams/experimental groups for a firm gets cut as they dont have dealflow, and expensive upper management like group heads or higher-paid MDs whose group the firm thinks they can consolidate with another. So really any good TMT/FIG/other top groups at a decent firm should never have major layoffs

Feb 19, 2021 - 4:30pm

HBM

especially after the GFC, its much less common. Only really during major black swan events does it happen, and I would argue its fairly predictable who gets laid-off. Usually newer teams/experimental groups for a firm gets cut as they dont have dealflow, and expensive upper management like group heads or higher-paid MDs whose group the firm thinks they can consolidate with another. So really any good TMT/FIG/other top groups at a decent firm should never have major layoffs

You are wrong.

Feb 18, 2021 - 2:51pm

Intern in IB - Ind

Is it possible to go through a career in finance without being laid off? Someone told me that is unusual to go through a career in finance and not be laid off a few times

Over a 40 year career in hard charging finance? Yeah it's not unusual. Think Jamie Dimon was laid off at one point and he's obviously not a scrub.

some of it market dynamics and politics (wrong place, wrong time) or it could be coverage group issues. Common for energy (and further back - coal/mining) coverage bankers to get laid off. 
 

im sure a ton of tech guys got fired in 2001 when that slowed down. 

Learn More

300+ video lessons across 6 modeling courses taught by elite practitioners at the top investment banks and private equity funds -- Excel Modeling -- Financial Statement Modeling -- M&A Modeling -- LBO Modeling -- DCF and Valuation Modeling -- ALL INCLUDED + 2 Huge Bonuses.

Learn more
  • Intern in IB-M&A
Feb 20, 2021 - 12:56am

Yeah Jamie Dimon made Citi into what it is today, and then he was "politely asked" to leave. He went to a bank that merged with JPM, became CEO there, and eventually made JPM into what it is today.

Moral of the story: do all you can to get fired so you can become the next Jamie Dimon

Feb 19, 2021 - 11:25am

It's pretty simple, if no deals are happening in your sector or your firm can't land deals there will be cuts. Generally M&A seems to be fairly stable. In good times, there's a ton of growth focused M&A. In bad times, there's more defensive M&A, restructuring situations. Companies that wouldn't think of doing things will be forced to take action. If you're in coverage and your firm does ECM, DCM, and M&A, there should be revenue opportunities through the cycle, unless there's a major dislocation like the GFC. 

KC
  • Analyst 2 in IB - Ind
Feb 19, 2021 - 4:04pm

One view from someone who spent some time outside of IBD before (thank god) switching: S&T, especially in the boutique and independent research space and non-BBs is getting crushed by Mifi II and flows from active to passive. They got bailed out this year by covid volatility, but make no mistake, it's secular decline for the foreseeable future. Seen many layoffs across research, sales, and trading, and severely scaled back hiring at places that are doing well. Just take a look around, S&T divisions just had their best year in a decade thanks to covid, and yet how many S&T job postings do you see online vs IBD? 

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Ind
Feb 19, 2021 - 8:55pm
Start Discussion

Total Avg Compensation

August 2021 Investment Banking

  • Director/MD (10) $853
  • Vice President (36) $363
  • Associates (210) $232
  • 2nd Year Analyst (121) $152
  • 3rd+ Year Analyst (28) $146
  • Intern/Summer Associate (102) $144
  • 1st Year Analyst (450) $132
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (358) $82