University of Chicago Economics Major

Current senior year analyst at a BB who graduated from UC a few years ago. Between assisting with summer analyst recruiting and seeing a few posts on UChicago economics, I thought I'd offer my 2 cents. Particularly responding to a few posters espousing the idea that you can "easily" get a high GPA in the Econ major, putting in "minimal effort". Take this how you like:

My firm is well aware of the new Business Economics Major, and we're automatically more wary of the GPA listed (auto adjust by -0.1). To those unfamiliar: the newly offered business economics track is significantly easier, due to the types of students drawn to the major (athletes, etc.), and the less math-heavy content of the courses themselves. Underclassmen at UC: don't cheat yourself, finish the real sequence. It does make a difference come recruiting.

I would encourage those of you handling recruiting at your own firms to clarify whether candidates majored in the traditional "empirical sequence" or new "business economics" track, regardless of what's listed on their resume. Have had a few issues about this come up already this current cycle.

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Comments (16)

Jun 22, 2020 - 10:57pm

I am interested in doing IB restructuring in Chicago. Im aware of the big names in the space e.g Lazard, HL etc. Im looking for a list of smaller Turnaround (consulting) and Restructuring shops for my job search. Do you have any recommendations?

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Jun 22, 2020 - 11:44pm

As someone who goes there, the bizecon track lets you take classes at Booth, which are much more applicable to banking than regular econ, and not to mention, just as difficult considering they're taught at the graduate level. Plus, with recruiting being so early, people barely take any major classes before applying anyway. Mostly it's just core classes

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Jun 23, 2020 - 2:03am

can i pm you? looking to learn more about UC because I'm starting there in the fall

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  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Jun 23, 2020 - 9:28am

But why would I do that if I can take them for major classes?

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  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Jun 24, 2020 - 4:36pm

This is a pretty insane claim, since you recruit usually near the end of second year, when real econ majors have taken Calc 3, Math 195, (usually Math 196 and/or stat 234 as well), and the entire Econ 200 sequence. In contrast, business econ kids have taken intro macro / micro, no high level math, and things like financial accounting (which, despite being Booth classes are offered in undergraduate versions specifically for Bizecon kids) and perhaps 1 - or at most 2 - 'hard' Booth classes (which, as an econ major who takes those Booth classes to supplement my knowledge of finance, are certainly not as hard / time consuming as the analysis sequence).

I'll gladly give you that business econ is going to be more applicable to banking/finance than regular econ, but to say that they're the same difficulty by recruiting time because "all you have taken are core classes" is completely wrong lol. Also it is pretty easy for a real econ major to just take Corp Fin or Financial Statement Analysis in their own time, which is all you really will have done as a biznomics major come recruiting anyways. Biznomics should not be able to call itself economics.

  • Intern in IB - Gen
Jun 24, 2020 - 5:01pm

From a current undergrad, this is spot on. I find it amusing our school doesn't care to distinguish between business economics vs. real economics on diplomas/transcripts. A bit frustrating for someone invested in completing the traditional route for learning's sake, and will have a lower GPA bc of it.

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Jun 23, 2020 - 1:49am

can you talk about what you most value in your UC experience and what's helped the most in your job or recruiting?

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
May 22, 2021 - 2:15am

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