Sales at Investment Banks???

Subscribe

I have always wanted to become a trader and eventually work for one of the bigger IB's. I have recently learned about the sales end of the trading business and developed an interest in that particulat sector. I had a few questions:

What exactly does the job consist of?

Would a dual degree in finance and marketing look better then finance and accounting?

How much do these guys make? Are the top guys bringing home 7 figures?

Thanks in advance.

Comments (25)

 
Dec 10, 2009 - 1:02pm

Yea, income potential could be considered unlimited. The Sales end of the business is extremely client oriented, the Sales side is constantly on the phone talking with institutional clients/pension funds etc and they are informing the "clients" basically on how the market is performing/ what is going on/ making recommendations/ and trying to sell products. You should try to get some experience at smaller banks doing anything related to the sales side. Or any type of sales driven experience would be beneficial. You have to be great with numbers/follow the market/ and someone who could communicate/talk over the phone without sounding like a idiot.
The Sales force deals directly with the traders, the sales people take an order from their clients and then send it on to the traders, then the traders try to find the best price "trade" they can possible.
This is how most of the BB banks "Sales and Trading" divisions work.
If someone knows better than I do, please correct me if I'm wrong.

Note: You do not cold call clients trying to pitch stock ideas. The Clients call you!
So you make it happen

 
Dec 10, 2009 - 3:00pm

slumdogny:
Yea, income potential could be considered unlimited. The Sales end of the business is extremely client oriented, the Sales side is constantly on the phone talking with institutional clients/pension funds etc and they are informing the "clients" basically on how the market is performing/ what is going on/ making recommendations/ and trying to sell products. You should try to get some experience at smaller banks doing anything related to the sales side. Or any type of sales driven experience would be beneficial. You have to be great with numbers/follow the market/ and someone who could communicate/talk over the phone without sounding like a idiot.
The Sales force deals directly with the traders, the sales people take an order from their clients and then send it on to the traders, then the traders try to find the best price "trade" they can possible.
This is how most of the BB banks "Sales and Trading" divisions work.
If someone knows better than I do, please correct me if I'm wrong.

Note: You do not cold call clients trying to pitch stock ideas. The Clients call you!
So you make it happen

So that means that neither the sales guy nor the trader(whom he sends the order) has any discretion as to what trades to put on.Are they just executing trades for their clients at the best price..like a broker ?

 
Dec 11, 2009 - 12:51pm

NuK85:
slumdogny:
Yea, income potential could be considered unlimited. The Sales end of the business is extremely client oriented, the Sales side is constantly on the phone talking with institutional clients/pension funds etc and they are informing the "clients" basically on how the market is performing/ what is going on/ making recommendations/ and trying to sell products. You should try to get some experience at smaller banks doing anything related to the sales side. Or any type of sales driven experience would be beneficial. You have to be great with numbers/follow the market/ and someone who could communicate/talk over the phone without sounding like a idiot.
The Sales force deals directly with the traders, the sales people take an order from their clients and then send it on to the traders, then the traders try to find the best price "trade" they can possible.
This is how most of the BB banks "Sales and Trading" divisions work.
If someone knows better than I do, please correct me if I'm wrong.

Note: You do not cold call clients trying to pitch stock ideas. The Clients call you!
So you make it happen

So that means that neither the sales guy nor the trader(whom he sends the order) has any discretion as to what trades to put on.Are they just executing trades for their clients at the best price..like a broker ?

Not exactly true. Let's focus on the trading side first. To begin, you need to understand how the flow works at most desks. Yes, you get orders from clients, which means that you are on the opposite side of their trade. This does not, however, mean that you automatically trade out of it. As a trader, you decide what to do with your risk (what you are opposite the clients) which essentially makes up your book. Obviously a little more complicated, because depending on the product you might not be able to actually trade out of it, so then hedging strategies come into play. This is really why when most people say that trading is "managing risk." Beyond this, most desks also put on prop bets, either from their own ideas or as a reaction to what they see their clients doing. Brokers are not allowed to take risk, they are simply matching buyers and sellers.

Salespeople are also not taking any risk, but they pitch ideas to clients and try to get business for the firm. (In general) when clients want to make a move, they will talk to the salespeople who then ask the traders to make a price, the client then decides to execute or not (depending on whether he gets a better price elsewhere or likes a certain firm better etc) and if they execute that's when the desk is on the opposite side of the client.

Jack: They’re all former investment bankers who were laid off from that economic crisis that Nancy Pelosi caused. They have zero real world skills, but God they work hard. -30 Rock
 
Dec 10, 2009 - 3:58pm

except for prop. traders, as they trade with their own institution's money and more choice on what types of investments to make. as you generate higher returns, ur institution would usu. allocate more funds at your disposal. if u want know more, read something like fooled by randomness...

 
Dec 14, 2009 - 5:05pm

It can be done. Are you already getting your MBA? A lot of sales positions are open to guys with two-four years industry experience (banking and possibly consulting) so you may not even need that. How common? I can't speak from personal experience.

 
Dec 14, 2009 - 7:43pm

Not sure why no one uses the search function on here anymore, this has been discussed in depth. There is a whole thread about an FX sales guy.

Anyways if you have worked in a BB or on a trading floor. You notice that alot of the higher ups in management come from sales, a lot of the head of capital markets were former sales guys. Inside a sell-side bank the higher you get the lines between sales/trading get blurry. Oh yah yes they make 7 figures and more.

Start Discussion

Total Avg Compensation

September 2020 Investment Banking

  • Director/MD (17) $704
  • Vice President (45) $323
  • Associates (257) $228
  • 3rd+ Year Analyst (37) $203
  • 2nd Year Analyst (142) $153
  • Intern/Summer Associate (134) $141
  • 1st Year Analyst (566) $129
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (547) $82

Leaderboard See all

1
Jamoldo's picture
Jamoldo
98.3
2
LonLonMilk's picture
LonLonMilk
98.3
3
Secyh62's picture
Secyh62
98.2
4
CompBanker's picture
CompBanker
97.8
5
Edifice's picture
Edifice
97.6
6
redever's picture
redever
97.6
7
Addinator's picture
Addinator
97.6
8
frgna's picture
frgna
97.5
9
NuckFuts's picture
NuckFuts
97.5
10
bolo up's picture
bolo up
97.4