Phone Interview: Was It Unusual?

I had a phone interview with a boutique investment bank and the interviewer asked four questions

**Update: This was for a summer analyst position that would only pay $10/hour and only 40 hrs/week so not very serious

(1) Walk me through your resume
(2) Why investment banking?
(3) How do you value a company
(4) What happens when depreciation increases by $10

Obviously, I expected #1 and #2 but I was thrown off by #3 and especially by #4

Have you guys ever had phone interviews ask technical questions like that?

Also, how would you answer the "value a company" -- would you have talked about the DCF, trading comps, and precedent transactions?

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Comments (9)

Apr 14, 2015 - 9:48pm

I'd say these 4 are the set in stone questions you should be prepared for in an interview. The fact that you made this thread makes me think this is a troll but I'll give you the benefit of the doubt.

Apr 15, 2015 - 1:13am

OP, those are very basic, standard questions. You should have been surprised if you didn't get those, I've had them asked in a lot of my first rounds (phone and in-person). You should really spend some time looking at guides (e.g. M&I 400 Questions) before going into interviews because if you're thrown off by very basic "check the box" questions like those, you're going to get hosed when it comes to most interviews.

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Apr 15, 2015 - 12:40pm

Interesting responses. I answered the questions correctly. I have already studied the 400 questions and memorized 300 of them. This was my first interview with an investment bank and first phone interview. I conducted research and came to to the conclusion that phone interviews were not technical in discussion. Therefore, the questions came to a surprise. As a result, I came onto this forum and wanted to get the opinion of other users so as to understand what to expect in phone interviews -- moreso if I should expect technicals. Some of your comments have been brash and unwelcome. Others not so much. I think commenters lack knowledge about the OP and instead of making ill-advised comments with assumptions of ignorance, they should rather offer guidance and, as some have done, offer insight into how technical phone interviews can get. The misguided comments making rude judgements are in poor taste given my lack of experience. That is all. My question was surely ignorant, if you consider ignorance lacking experience, knowledge, or unknowing. I did not, but now do, know that some phone interviews can get very technical, as commenters mentioned. Thank you to some. No thank you to others.

LA Bull
  • 3
Apr 15, 2015 - 1:00pm

This is the Internet, and quite frankly your questions weren't particularly intelligent. Stop taking criticism so personally.

A cursory search for first round questions will show that these four questions are perhaps the foundation for every IBD internship interview ever given. There are firms that will ask far more technical and challenging questions in phone interviews. This ranges from full business cases to back of envelope model calculations to brainteasers. Be prepared for everything and never assume.

Apr 15, 2015 - 3:10pm
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