Jefferies phone interview on Thursday. Any help?

So I applied a few weeks ago and online and just found out I got a phone interview. I don't know anyone at Jefferies but am wondering if any of you have any hints on how to prepare?

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Comments (41)

Feb 17, 2014 - 1:32pm

I had two phone interviews and a superday there. The interviews vary depending on who you get on the phone. Its usually one analyst and an associate and they go through basic valuation and accounting questions. First interview asked if you owned a small business and were approached with an offer, what valuation would buyer use and what points would you consider if you were to sell. Second technical was get me from enterprise value to equity value and finally walk me through DCF.

Second phone interview only had one technical which was the cookie-cutter depreciation by 10 question.

In terms of behaviorals they want to see that you are passionate about IBanking but also have a little life outside (but not too much, as remarked by one person I spoke to).

I thought it went easy and its not stressful if youre prepared.

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Feb 2, 2015 - 11:51am

Had an ER interview with Jefferies - although it was in person not over the phone. ER is definitely going to vary based on what team you are interviewing with.

I met first with the Associate Analyst (he had 20+ years experience) and then the Analyst came into the room to join the discussion. The team was pretty intense, seemed very no-nonsense, worked tough hours/weekends and had high expectations. When I asked during our Q&A session at the end why the role was open they said that they fired the previous associate because she wasn't showing enough personal interest in her work. Hopefully you get lucky and have a chill team. Anyways..

I was interviewing for an experienced hire role so they asked me many questions about my current role, day-to-day duties, and why I wanted to switch to Jefferies. Then the topic of discussion shifted to stocks under coverage and how familiar I was w/stocks in their coverage universe (trying to gauge how much they would have to teach me if I came onboard). They asked me about my research process, how I find stocks to cover, how I prepare research reports, how I build models,

Finally, we went through some technical questions ie: give me a stock pitch, walk me through growth catalysts, margin profile, competitors, etc (this turned into a 20 min or 30 min discussion). They asked me different questions trying to poke holes in my pitch / determine if I was prepared to defend me stance.

As part of the stock pitch, they asked a few questions on valuation but after we could hold relatively-fluent convo on valuation for a minute or two they did not press the issue or ask me to walk through a DCF (i think that is more of a i-bank question but be prepared either way). I imagine if I was not prepared for the valuation discussion they would have grilled me much harder.

Overall, the interview went well but I left feeling that the team was too up-tight and that I would never want to work full-time for these guys. The associate seemed like a real kiss-ass to the analyst and said he expected me to work every weekend - dont get me wrong, I have worked long hours on wall-street for many years but this seemed like a big red flag to me - especially during an initial meeting. The meeting left much to be desired if I was seriously considering building a long-term career at Jefferies. I realize if you are coming straight from undergrad or masters you may not have the flexibility to be as picky.

About one month after our meeting, the team had finished interviewing other candidates and HR contacted me to gauge my stance on salary. By that point, I had already accepted a role on the buy-side so we went our separate ways. Do you know what industry you are industry you are interviewing with?

Best of luck.

Feb 2, 2015 - 1:16pm

Thanks a lot for the detailed post. It's not my thread, but I'm interviewing for a SA ER position. Any tips? Maybe on past experience if your team used to bring on interns?

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Best Response
Feb 2, 2015 - 1:49pm

Below is a list of a few topics that have I have come across in ER interviews. I've been on both sides of the table (interviewee, interviewer) so hopefully this helps:

- Stock pitch (get to know one stock very well, be prepared for any question that may come your way on the name).
- Valuation questions - be able to explain different methods of valuing a company (multiples, comps, historic averages, dcf, take-out multiples, etc).
- Accounting questions (have a solid understanding of the 3 statements and what flows-through).
- General market knowledge - read the newspaper, be able to discuss larger market trends.
- Research your interviewer, be familiar with their coverage area (read an industry primer if you have to brush up), look them up on linkedin, learn as much as possible about them).
- Be prepared to demonstrate that you can work on a team, write a research report, and build a financial model.
- Understand what sell-side equity research is and how it works. I can't believe how many guys walk through the door and don't even understand how a sell-side shop generates revenue. Each shop has a different revenue model so understand the biggest businesses for the specific shop you are interviewing for.
- Demonstrate that you are quick learner, easily adaptable.
- Understand that an associate's role is to make an analysts life easier. Be prepared to explain how you can add-value.
- Know the key factors why the ER shop you are interviewing for is different (aka: better) than others - and be able to discuss.
- Ask good questions during the Q&A session.
- Turn the interview into a discussion or the interviewer will feel the need to keep asking you questions, leaving room for you to trip.

Feb 2, 2015 - 2:48pm

Jefferies phone interview tomorrow morning out-of-nowhere!! Help please!! (Originally Posted: 07/24/2008)

Hi all,

Just got a phone investment banking interview with Jefferies for tech IB analyst tomorrow morning. I will be talking to a Senior VP of the Digital Media practice. Anyone know anything very specific to this group? Experience interviewing at the firm? Any surprises I should look out for?

Thank you so much!!

Feb 2, 2015 - 2:49pm

Relax, it's doubtful they will grill you on the phone. Do yourself a favor and if you can't find deals they've worked on frmo their website, look to Capital IQ, factiva, other news databases, etc. and start punching in the names of guys on the team, and the bank/group itself.

Know the basic layup questions cold, be calm, sound friendly and amiable. I doubt Jeffries would throw you for a loop on the phone, but just make sure you treat it like you're talking to someone you know.

Feb 2, 2015 - 2:55pm

One of my buddies actually works for Jefferies. From my understanding, the whole interview process was based on technicals and brainteasers. I doubt you will get a technical over the phone, but do expect a brainteaser or two. i'll email from friend to ask about the interview, if he gets back to me by tonight, Ill pm you. Goodluck and relax.

Feb 2, 2015 - 2:56pm

Thanks so much everyone!! Yeah I think I'm fairly well prepared at this point aside from the possible brain teasers but if I relax I should be able to show a good thought process. Anyways thanks for your help and we'll see what happens tomorrow.

Feb 2, 2015 - 2:58pm

i never had a phone interview from Jefferies but from some other boutiques.

Why ibanking? what do you want to be in the future?
How did you hear about Jefferies? Why Jefferies?
Why your school?
Why finance/accounting/your major?
Why tech?
Walk me thru your resume.
What "value add" do you bring to our firm?
What is CAGR, PEG, Economic Value Added, Sum of parts?
Walk me through a DCF? Does it apply to all equity firms?
Walk me thru the fin statements when you buy a machine on credit.
What is cheaper? debt or equity? why?
Any questions?

Feb 2, 2015 - 3:00pm

Update: Wow complete shocker that the call was very casual and went very smoothly. No technicals or brain teasers. But yeah I'm not letting my guard down because I know it's gonna be much harder during the on-site interview. Anyways thanks everyone and if you have any advice for the on-site interview I'd really appreciate it.

Good luck to all of us!!

Feb 2, 2015 - 3:05pm

good question. and when do they officially start doing the phone interviews. I'm assuming that you were already told you would have one but if we have not yet does that mean that we won't be getting one?

Feb 2, 2015 - 3:07pm

Nothing too bad. Couple of higher level questions about how the financial statements flow together, what the main valuation techniques are, etc etc. I interviewed for a regional office so I got some industry-specific questions and also why I'd be a good fit for that location. Talked about resume experience and went quickly through the deal I had worked on as an intern.

Just be as prepared as possible. Less likely to get super-hard technical questions over the phone, as it's usually easier to do that in person and let the kid start writing stuff out and see how it goes, but don't assume it's all going to be fit.

Also, is this with an HR person or an analyst/associate? Makes a big difference.

Feb 2, 2015 - 3:11pm

Jefferies Phone Interview SF office (Originally Posted: 09/23/2010)

Hey guys,

I have a phone interview with Jefferies next week, specifically a banker in their CleanTech group out of SF. HAS anybody had a first round with them, particularly SF? I know to be prepared for anything, but I would appreciate any input you all would have. Also, does anybody know anything particular about their SF office? deal flow? execution? exit opps? Thanks so much!

Feb 2, 2015 - 3:12pm

Do these 4 things u'll be fine

  1. read this blog : http://cleantech.com/news/1458/a-record-week-in-cleantech-deals .immerse urself with recent marketing activity in cleantech

  2. have it on paper in front of u in block letter : HOW TO DCF, CALCULATE FCF, WACC,

  3. Tell me how would u evaluate how much is ABC Solar, Inc worth if u've only 5 mins to do a quick-analysis

  4. be confident. its just one interview. even if u blew it or dont hear back, it aint end of the world, fuck em, there's always another bank.

good luck

Feb 2, 2015 - 3:15pm

Jefferies Telephone Interview (Originally Posted: 02/22/2012)

Hi at all.

I applied for Jefferies International in Frankfurt Germany. Because this is my first exposure to Investment Banking at all, I am very unsure what they will ask me during the telephone interview.
Has anyone help or suggestions what an undergraduate in his last Bachelor's semester should definitely need to know? I would highly appreciate it!
My background is business studies/finance (non target) and I am from Germany if that helps.

I was said, that the interview will be 1 hour.

Again, I am thankful for your experienced advises!!

Regards,
mott

Feb 2, 2015 - 3:16pm

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Feb 2, 2015 - 3:17pm

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