Comments (10)

Dec 5, 2010

Congrats on the offers. If they are both interesting to you, I don't think you could go wrong with either choice.

I don't really know anything about Bernstein ER's structure, but exit ops typically would be jumping to buy side investment management or business school. You will also be in frequent contact with top level management of major public companies, so a move into the industry is also possible. Less frequent but also possible are moves into VC or PE. At the end of the day, equity research will be largely what YOU make of it. However, working under a good analyst is crucial to your experience. Hopefully, you put some serious effort and thought during the interview process to figure out if the analyst is a good fit for you.

I can't speak much to consulting, other than that it is more of a demanded background when it comes to VC recruiting than ER.

Dec 7, 2010

I agree completely with vfrex on this one, just piping in to boost the sample size here. You really can't go wrong on this one, but if you are like most who aren't really sure what they want to do later, McK is the better choice, it's just a more broadly respected and recognized brand. I had a similar choice a couple of years ago (McK vs a couple of non Bernstein ER offers), and chose ER but did so more b/c of the lifestyle (lots of travel vs little) factors, but the key variable there was that I was coming out of a PhD, was older, and married, not b/c of the perceived exit opps.

Dec 25, 2010

McKinsey - Bernstein ER is a great shop with top notch people but sucks for a junior guy - they will never promote you to a senior - they almost always hire from the outside (industry people or ex-consultants). Also working at Bernstein you will get no transactional experience - they do no underwriting

Dec 26, 2010

Definitely Mckinsey......
Exit opportunities are varible for Mck: IB,PE&VC..I am not sure about the Bernstein Equity Research.
Good luck, buddy..

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Dec 26, 2010

Bernstein is good for investment management/buyside/hf's, although it seems extremely difficult these days to break in. I dont think Bernstein is good for PE/IB, especially since its an independent ER shop.

Dec 26, 2010

If you aren't sure, I'd pick McKinsey. But it's not a ridiculous question.

Equity Research could be a springboard to a really interesting (and insanely lucrative) career in investment management, and if you're sure you want to enter that field there is nothing wrong with equity research.

McKinsey is extremely flexible, and will give you a lot of options, and probably a better chance of getting into a top b school (although I'm sure bernstein can do that as well).

If you decide that you don't want to do investment management, you will wish you had done McKinsey.

However, if you decide you want to do fundamendal hedge funds, you will probably wish you had done equity research. You can still get a shot at those types of jobs with McK + top business school, but you will have an uphill climb. They aren't just looking for "prestige", they want somebody who "gets it" on day one, and you will probably develop the investing horse sense better in ER than at McK.

That said, McK gives you opportunities to get some useful exposure, e.g. through a PE rotation or work in the corp fin practice area.

As somebody who turned down McK coming out of college for an industry job (and who regrets it), the one thing I'd say is that you owe it to yourself to discuss this with the folks at both firms to get more context. I think a lot of college kids are uncomfortable about being "sold", and thus tend to make the decision on their own with incomplete information. Tell them your reservations and let them try to sell you on their firm, and use your own judgment to weed out the BS.

    • 1
Dec 25, 2010
EnricoPallazzo:

If you aren't sure, I'd pick McKinsey. But it's not a ridiculous question.

Equity Research could be a springboard to a really interesting (and insanely lucrative) career in investment management, and if you're sure you want to enter that field there is nothing wrong with equity research.

McKinsey is extremely flexible, and will give you a lot of options, and probably a better chance of getting into a top b school (although I'm sure bernstein can do that as well).

If you decide that you don't want to do investment management, you will wish you had done McKinsey.

However, if you decide you want to do fundamendal hedge funds, you will probably wish you had done equity research. You can still get a shot at those types of jobs with McK + top business school, but you will have an uphill climb. They aren't just looking for "prestige", they want somebody who "gets it" on day one, and you will probably develop the investing horse sense better in ER than at McK.

That said, McK gives you opportunities to get some useful exposure, e.g. through a PE rotation or work in the corp fin practice area.

As somebody who turned down McK coming out of college for an industry job (and who regrets it), the one thing I'd say is that you owe it to yourself to discuss this with the folks at both firms to get more context. I think a lot of college kids are uncomfortable about being "sold", and thus tend to make the decision on their own with incomplete information. Tell them your reservations and let them try to sell you on their firm, and use your own judgment to weed out the BS.

Thanks for the tip. I will take some serious consideration into it.

Dec 26, 2010

McKinsey. You'll get 2 years of incredible experience and the chance to travel extensively. When you're done, your exit opportunities are very strong - banking, private equity, industry. Pretty much anywhere you want to go, people respect the McKinsey name. As an added bonus, it's a pretty incredible network. Ex-McKinsey folks are scattered in high-level positions all over Wall Street, the F500, government, and pretty much everywhere else. Everything I've heard from friends that have worked there is that they look out for their own - ex-McKinsey folks love to hire other McKinsey alums.

I don't know anything about Bernstein or whether your interests lie firmly in ER, but if you're not sure yet what you want to do for the rest of your life, McKinsey leaves your doors wide open.

Dec 26, 2010
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