JPM London: Horror Stories on Junior Staff Cuts

2020 Incoming Analyst here:

Recently heard some horror stories on junior front office IBD/M&A staff treatment and firings at JPM in London. Seems a few ppl were chopped only a few weeks right after they hit their desks at the firm. Others were relocated to mid-office/bad teams without being told in advance.

Anyone knows more about this? Which teams were involved? And why? Thought they were still doing well?

Comments (45)

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Nov 11, 2019

They are doing well, but last year's intern class (also this one) has been extremely bad, which has lead to having some full time hires that were absolutely crap, that has influenced a lot how they have been treated, being moved or cut off.

If you do show some kind of commitment don't be worried, nothing structural at all.

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    • 3
Nov 12, 2019

I find this funny. 1000 applicants for each spot and the analysts that get the roles are crap?

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  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Nov 12, 2019

From my personal experience, yes. hahaha

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Nov 12, 2019

I am at JPM London and can confirm this

Most Helpful
Nov 13, 2019

It happens when you hire 80 people per class and rather than focusing on the quality of the candidates you focus on gender, sexual preferences, race, etc

    • 51
Nov 11, 2019

How can JPM judge on commitment and future performance of freshmen who will only be with the firm for a few weeks by then? Don't they need at least 3-12 months to get some profound impressions from everyone's job first?

Further advic needed, pls help!

Nov 12, 2019

Advise is a verb, advice is a noun

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    • 1
Nov 13, 2019

Absolutely not. You can usually tell in the first month whether someone will work out or not. If they're not fully ramped up at three months I prefer to fire them. They just aren't cut out for the job.

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    • 1
Nov 20, 2019

LOL at the poor snowflake that MS'd me. Your thoughts here matter about as much as they do in the professional world, that is to say, not at all.

    • 1
Nov 11, 2019

No insight into recent events, yet JPM was known to be a shop with much much more people per team compared to other banks. They are surely adjusting to the real level of staff required.

Nov 11, 2019

Does this mean new joiners will still be at a higher risk than people who are at the firm for years already?

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Nov 11, 2019

Join Real Estate if given the chance, their high deal flow will be helpful to survive. Its a jump to safety movement.

Controversial
Nov 12, 2019

I don't want to sound arrogant or anything, but pretty much everything that has been said above, including by the original poster is not accurate.

JPM has laid off between 40 to 70 people (depending on who you speak to) across Analysts and Associates. Accordingly to people on the floor, pretty much 3-5 people per team in Corporate Finance (i.e. not in ECM, ALF, DCM) have been asked to leave / relocate to other businesses within two months.

As JPM in London has C&R, DI, TMT, FIG, NRG, HC, Cazenove, Nordics, Benelux, Real Estate, Infra, assuming the 3-5 number above is accurate, they let go between 30 and 55 people. As a fact, they let go people at associate 1 and associate 2 level, hence they didn't specifically target new joiners. On the contrary, they cut some people who were lateral hires that spent 1 year with the firms, but they didn't cut the lateral hires they got this summer, despite cutting other people within those groups.
Secondly, different people got different treatments: if you were a decent performer, you received 2 months of notice, and you could use the first month to find another job within the firm (eg. in Capital Markets which is growing). If you were not a good performer, you were asked to leave without the option to recruit internally.

Going to the reasons of this, JPM just became the best bank on the street (together with GS but for different reasons) in which you want to be an analyst:
- marvelous platform, scale, brand name and experience
- one of the the few which still have the training in NY
- voluntary rotation program after 18 months in other groups
- voluntary global mobile program to change office between your third and sixth year
- pen down policy between Friday evening and Saturday afternoon
- protected weekend initiative
- no marketing work on weekends
- fast track promotions at analyst / associate and VP level
- senior people becoming more conscious of work life balance at junior level with terrible MD which were asked to leave in the last few years / not properly compensated as a result of poor performance with juniors

All of the above, determined a much lower churn that what JPM was expecting (I know multiple people at analysts level who just don't want to recruit for PE as lifestyle is simply good, including analyst 2/3 leaving consistently between 7 and 9 pm unless they are on live mandates) and they ended up with too many people with transaction volume this year not being as strong as last year (as a result of the market more than JPM)

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    • 8
Nov 12, 2019

I didn't think you were arrogang the first, second or third time... but a fourth? Come one. That's just rubbing it in his face!

EDIT: Lol, seems like the other three identical posts were removed due to spam.

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  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Nov 12, 2019

Completely inaccurate. And I can say this as JPM banker

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Nov 13, 2019

I have friends that got fired at associate 1, associate 2 or Analyst in NRG, TMT and DI. Some of them are recruiting internally, some of them got asked to leave. You can tell me what is inaccurate and we can exchange notes. I have been there 5 years and live with one of them who is in his 7th year there, so I would think my sources are pretty accurate

One thing I didn't mention, aligned to the OP, one guy who rotated from NA and who was supposed to sit in an industry group, got allocated to private placements, within ECM. Given this, I would not exclude they may have done something similar with new joiners.

To be honest, in 5 years with them, I have never seen something like this.

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  • Intern in IB-M&A
Nov 15, 2019

The problem started here:

JPM London was #1 in the recent years by the percentage of the people that get summer internship through connections. Not "push my CV up" sort of networking during the selection who gets the phone interview (first big cut in the selection process) but "I have lower 2:1, don't know what is market beta and no motivation but dad told me it would be the best to start my career here so he called senior bankers to lobby for me" sort of connection.

It worked well 5-6 years ago because the guys that had connections were motivated.

Than consider the usual contingent that comes every year through diversity programme and not qualifications (female, African-Americans, LGBT etc.) and it is clear that the serious problem will arise.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Nov 15, 2019

Luckily for them no one care whether you have higher or lower 2.1

Nov 15, 2019

Tbf grades mean shit - some of the best analysts had shit grades because they can't give a fuck about academic shit but have insane attention to detail + solid technical skills.

    • 3
Nov 17, 2019
Intern in IB-M&A:

The problem started here:
....
Than consider the usual contingent that comes every year through diversity programme and not qualifications (female, African-Americans, LGBT etc.) and it is clear that the serious problem will arise.

I get you are against diversity programs but what does African American have to do with JPM London ...

  • Intern in IB-M&A
Nov 17, 2019

Not African American in that sense, I talked about black students born and raised in the UK that receive an offer only because of the diversity programme.

If only qualifications would be considered in deciding who receives the offer for IB internship/FT, 95% of the intake would be white, male, straight and Western European. That is the fact.

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Nov 17, 2019
Intern in IB-M&A:

The problem started here:

JPM London was #1 in the recent years by the percentage of the people that get summer internship through connections. Not "push my CV up" sort of networking during the selection who gets the phone interview (first big cut in the selection process) but "I have lower 2:1, don't know what is market beta and no motivation but dad told me it would be the best to start my career here so he called senior bankers to lobby for me" sort of connection.

It worked well 5-6 years ago because the guys that had connections were motivated.

Than consider the usual contingent that comes every year through diversity programme and not qualifications (female, African-Americans, LGBT etc.) and it is clear that the serious problem will arise.

Where do you get this ranking from? It is not my experience there to be honest. I saw a lot of girls but not many black individuals. And as a matter of fact, you don't know the sexual orientation of the candidate as you go through the interview process.

    • 2
Nov 15, 2019

OP here: This is all helpful. It very much sounds like a shit place you should not start your finance career in (considered you are a strong performer but mainstream, West European, white, male, and straight). Also, it sounds like there is just too much of nepotism going on.

How about the more junior, good mainstream people who deliver on day-to-day work and don't care for politics? Do they still exist? What happens to them?

I think your stories will help many ongoing finance people (even those who still seriously consider M&A)...

Nov 16, 2019
chimpnationcash:

OP here: This is all helpful. It very much sounds like a shit place you should not start your finance career in (considered you are a strong performer but mainstream, West European, white, male, and straight). Also, it sounds like there is just too much of nepotism going on.

How about the more junior, good mainstream people who deliver on day-to-day work and don't care for politics? Do they still exist? What happens to them?

I think your stories will help many ongoing finance people (even those who still seriously consider M&A)...

Unfortunately there is politics in every finance organization. After few years in the sector, you eventually accept it. It sucks, but it is still there and to be consistently well ranked, especially as you move up with seniority, you need to play it and be lucky at it. I have been on both side (i.e. taking advantage of that and being disadvantaged because of that), and it is frustrating when you have it against you but we need to recognize that sometimes you have it on your side.
There are people who do their job and don't care about this stuff, but eventually you have to. Banking is a people job and after a certain level, your technical skills are given for granted and then it becomes all about your ability to blend with the seniors and the clients and this has a lot to do with politics.

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Nov 15, 2019
Comment
Nov 17, 2019