Official BB Ranking 2020

Top: GS, MS, JPM
Middle: BOFA, Citi, Barclays, CS
Bottom: RBC, Wells, DB, UBS

rising: Barclays, JPM, Citi, RBC
falling: DB, UBS, CS


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Comments (140)

Jan 23, 2020 - 8:02pm

What's everyone's view on GS vs. JPM vs MS:

If you had an analyst/associate offer from each, in what order would you rank the offers.? Also what about if the offer was not in JPM healthcare, MS Tech, GS Tech (elite groups at each bank) which bank would you choose?

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  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Apr 3, 2020 - 12:11am

depends - definitely not JP because their group placement can't fuck you and land you in ECM DCM or FIG. would definitely take GS Industrials/FIG/TMT over most MS groups. but would take MS M&A or MediaComm over GS industrials/FIG.

Jan 23, 2020 - 10:44pm

It's topic dependent, so if you start a topic I think you can force only allowing certified users to respond.

Be excellent to each other, and party on, dudes.
  • Associate 1 in PE - LBOs
Jan 23, 2020 - 9:35pm

Bad topic but this could be helpful for someone in undergrad with 2 offers. For PE recruiting, I'd say these rankings are pretty accurate.

  • Associate 2 in PE - LBOs
Jan 25, 2020 - 3:55pm

Exactly, idk why these sensitive boomers are so mad. This is essentially how headhunters view the BBs, it's not like OP said that DB employees are idiots and GS ones are geniuses.

I went to a nontarget and when I had offers from 2 BBs I had no idea which was better until I looked at WSO. If I went to the wrong one, my whole life trajectory would have been messed up.

  • Intern in IB - Cov
Jan 23, 2020 - 9:27pm

This is honestly accurate, very few people work at GS/MS/JPM though, so enjoy the monkey shits.

If anyone has an offer from 2 banks, take the one in the higher tier. If same tier, go with people/culture.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Restr
Jan 23, 2020 - 10:05pm

Most BB offers are generalist and you have to network in to a group(Big reason why I went to an EB. You are absolutely right about NYC vs non-NYC; however, I'd say this ranking would be correct if there was a caveat that said "NYC offices and average group"

  • Business School in IB - Gen
Jan 23, 2020 - 10:29pm

Thoughts on EB rankings (can this even be done?):

Tier 1:
Centerview Partners
(both have top-notch pay, amazing deal flow and supposedly solid culture)

Tier 1(b):
PJT Partners (top-notch pay, mega deals, slightly less established)
Moelis (top pay, established, but higher volume of smaller deals, somewhat notorious culture)
Lazard (prestigious global brand, fantastic deal flow, but pay is on the lower end of the spectrum)
PWP (heavy-hitter senior bankers, top pay, still relatively less established, fewer deals)

Tier 2:
Greenhill (established boutique, but been on a downward trend)
Guggenheim (some mega deals, but heavily group-dependent - namely TMT, HC and FIG, otherwise sometimes considered to be MM)

-NYC office
-M&A (not inclusive of RX)
-Also does not include top MM such as HLHZ, Jeffries, Blair, etc.

Most Helpful
  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jan 24, 2020 - 2:24am

Not sure why PJT isn't in Tier 1 tho, given top 10 M&A last year, largest per deal size (but multiple large deals, not one outlier skewing the mean, with Abbvie, TDAm, all the MGM deals, Caesars, Danaher/GE, etc.), largest deal value per analyst by far especially after EVR expanded its class and top notch recruiting, virtually everyone goes to top PE or HF (most recent included BX, APO, Carlyle, CB, TPG and a couple tiger cubs).

Also don't forget about CVP's 3 year deal and the fact that they're less keen on their juniors recruiting (even tho people do it anyway).

Also tempted to maybe swap CVP and MOE? Idk, culture sucks but it's definitely established especially if you include LA

  • Prospect in IB - CB
Jan 24, 2020 - 3:26pm

The 3 year contract sounds like it sucks, but talking to analysts there you have more of an excuse to wait til your 2nd year to recruit for PE (rather than being recruited MFs/top HFs. Analyst class is pretty small (~20) and the MDs do come bat for you. not to mention the $50k sign on bonus.

  • Business School in IB - Gen
Apr 2, 2020 - 8:24pm

Agreed, PJT should def be Tier 1a. I didn't make the initial post, but I otherwise generally agree with the EB rankings

Jan 25, 2020 - 11:01am

It depends on whether you are talking M&A, Restructuring or Industry Coverage. And are you talking just being an analyst or overall? For M&A I think that list is pretty accurate although Lazard is still a tier 1 M&A firm. PWP is small and the senior guys make tons of money. PJT and Moelis restructuring great exit ops for distressed/credit hedge funds.

  • Prospect in PE - Other
Jan 23, 2020 - 10:42pm

What kind of exit ops can you expect from the bottom of the BBs? Assuming top bucket

  • Associate 1 in IB - Cov
Jan 23, 2020 - 10:49pm

Depends on a lot like group, school, gpa. The same headhunters will hit up gs, citi, and rbc guys. Just do the best you can - these rankings are only useful for someone sitting on multiple offers. If you are dead set on PE and already at any BB, just work your tail off and hope for the best.

Jan 23, 2020 - 10:52pm

It depends more on the group than the tier of the bank. For example, BAML LevFin will place much better for PE than Goldman ECM. You should try to get an offer from the most prestigious group at the most prestigious bank in that order.

Jan 24, 2020 - 9:04am

lol this whole thread is the blind leading the blind.

Intern and Prospect reacts only pls

  • 7
  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
Jan 24, 2020 - 9:26am

Not gonna lie whoever made this is probably annoying to be around in real life, but the ranking is as "accurate" as any ranking can be.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Jan 24, 2020 - 2:52pm

The ranking is quite weak. Only 3 tiers? Like I might as well have made 1 tier stuffed all the BBs in and called it a "ranking"

Jan 25, 2020 - 12:54am

These pointless popcorn threads will never stop b/c junior bankers love paying attention to crap senior bankers couldn't give 2 monkey poos about; banking is banking; so and so is not a BB and so and so is blah blah.
Reality is that a "bottom tier" BB could have strong deal flow and pay bigger base & bonus than a "top tier" BB ranked higher on the league tables.

  • 5
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  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Jan 25, 2020 - 9:15am

The comparison still exists but instead of bank - bank its sell/side - buy/side so most IB MD/D will probably be viewed on as a failure by their circle. Usually those at the "bottom" care the least about such rankings or think they are the top.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Jan 25, 2020 - 9:35am

I can assure you that no MD/D is looked at as a failure. That has to be one of the stupidest things I've ever read on this forum. You should quit life and stop offering stupid opinions.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Jan 25, 2020 - 9:32am

I'm sorry but RBC is still a balance sheet bank and not a BB..

They did ~300-400 Syndicated Loan deals, ~300-400 DCM deals vs a paltry ~100 M&A and ~100 ECM deals last year.

That is not the profile of a BB investment banking division and the people of this forum trying to push RBC as one have absolutely no grounds to. It's basically a slightly better version of HSBC or Nomura, nothing more.

  • Analyst 3+ in HF - Other
Jan 25, 2020 - 10:22am

Every BB would have a similar split though. Absolute deal count is just a reflection of where the market is. Market share is what matters, which is why league tables are more relevant.

In 2019 US league tables, RBC was 11th in M&A, 10th in high yield, 8th in leveraged loans. So where does that put them? Across the board pretty consistently either at the bottom of the BB's or top of "the rest". Arguing whether that makes them a "BB" is just pointless semantics that nobody really cares about except college students or analysts at RBC, DB, and UBS updating creds slides at 1am.

Also, while the US banking platform has made strong progress, they are still weak in trading/research and non-North America.

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jan 25, 2020 - 1:45pm

this isn't true, you can look at any data and league tables it supports that RBC is in fact a BB. Market share is what is relevant for rankings.

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jan 25, 2020 - 2:26pm

what makes UBS a BB then?

fwiw, I think both UBS and RBC are pretty bad lol

Jan 30, 2020 - 4:25pm

I consider them strong enough in certain areas + full service, so they're basically a BB.

  • Director in IB-M&A
Jan 25, 2020 - 2:35pm

Look, as a director at one of these firms, I'd say these tiers are pretty accurate for domestic M&A.

However, instead of beefing up the status of RBC and Wells Fargo, UBS should really be removed from consideration as a Bulge Bracket - the deals just aren't there to back it up, and these past few years aren't an anomaly.

  • Director in IB-M&A
Jan 25, 2020 - 2:59pm

DB is still a top 15 player, UBS isn't even top 30 for domestic M&A.

I'll be frank, I know nothing about s&t/research, so my statements only apply to IBD.

Jan 27, 2020 - 8:18am

Unpopular opinion: there is no God, the universe is infinite, non of this matter, nothing we do matter, this ranking REALLY doesn't matter. Ricky Gervais' bits at the Golden Globes were amazing.


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  • 1
Apr 1, 2020 - 12:06pm

What are people's opinion of MS vs. JPM? I feel like MS gets a lot of hype but in a majority of league table publications (merger market, factset, wsj, etc) they seem to be behind JPM in global M&A. JPM does more deals but not many more, which leads me to believe both have exposure to big deals.

I know MS is a leader in the Tech IPO front but if you were deciding between the two today, which would you go? Factoring in recent performance, future outlook and the way the banks have positioned themselves

  • Principal in PE - LBOs
Apr 1, 2020 - 1:03pm

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  • Analyst 2 in IB - Cov
Apr 3, 2020 - 12:19am

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Apr 2, 2020 - 8:30pm

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  • Analyst 2 in IB-M&A
Sep 22, 2020 - 1:03pm

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