Urgent Help Needed: Tier-1 IBD or Bloomberg in China

Hello everyone,

My background: US high school diploma, UK top 5 undergrad (think semi-targets in London), low GPA, but will likely gain a 2:1 next year when I graduate. Trilingual - Mandarin, Cantonese, and English.

No BB offers this year. Not surprised at all since I had my gameplan wrong at the first place. I couldn't decide if I wanna do IBD in Hong Kong or in London last fall. Ended up networking with both sides and wasting a lot of focus/time.

Done PwC M&A advisory in China before. Currently interning with EY Assurance in Shanghai for 4 week. I plan to do another internship in July and Aug this year to get my resume boosted.

My options are:
- tier 1-1.5 IBD with one of the Chinese Banks (Haitong/Galaxy/GF Securities).
- Bloomberg Analytics & Sales in Beijing.

In terms of my career trajectory, I'd like to stay in core finance and preferably in London. I know most of you would recommend picking one of the IBD gigs and getting the best out of it, and I would most defo agree. I am also preparing GMAT this summer and hoping to get into LBS or LSE if I don't get an IBD FT offer this fall. But the thing is, I landed these gigs by pulling family strings. Common practice in Asia (you know what I mean...). Being a vip intern sucks... and HRs in London surely aren't dumb to notice this. I really don't know how much weight a chinese IBD internship can add onto my resume, especially considering I will be going into FT recruiting without a significant SA experience.

Conversely, Bloomberg's rep is international and the Analytics & Sales program, though not respected, is still selective. I even had four rounds of interviews with them, including one on-site in HK. I know the Bloomberg gig is notorious for trapping people into a pigeon hole as you won't learn any marketable skills for IBD/S&T/AM. I wasn't seriously considering Bloomberg, but the HR told me there will only be 4 interns this year and the return offer is almost guaranteed. Hours are strictly 8-6 and they even offer global pay in Beijing (that's crazy). With the price level in BJ, you can live very comfortably with $60k+/- a year as a graduate. That is slightly less than what an analyst makes at a Chinese Bank. And I guess I can always go get my MBA in 2-3 years if I wanna crawl back to IBD.

I have only about 48hours left to sign the Bloomberg offer, so I seriously am having a hard time to choose. What are everyone's thoughts? Any advice is appreciated. Thank you guys!

Comments (31)

 
Jun 30,2017

IBD would probably open more doors for you in 'high finance' later on.

How is the networking environment in China? Is it who you know in Government or family name like we hear or not?

26 Broadway
where's your sense of humor?

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Jun 30,2017

Thank you! Networking environment is less straight forward in China. Unless the people you try to network with are working in a 'west' bank (GS/UBS/MS/CICC/CITIC) and familiar with the western style of networking (coldcalling/ cold-emailing), you won't have much luck. The older generation of Chinese Bankers tend to be conservative and less warmhearted in terms of helping strangers.

The effective way to network in China is by pulling punches through Mom and Dad and having them call some of their friends for you....

 
Jun 30,2017

That's what I gathered from my undergrad days with international students in our business school. Can be a blessing or a curse depending on your last name.

26 Broadway
where's your sense of humor?

 
Jun 30,2017

Most of us are still ordinary people in China and our last names don't have a political connotation. The population is humongous and essentially a big business web, so ultimately every family will have some contacts in different fields. But obviously, if your last name means sth, you get green lights everywhere.

 
Jun 30,2017

Take the IBD if you want to work in high finance later on in your career.

I don't think that Bloomberg will give you the needed skills to get into high finance, not like it is impossible, but it is just making it harder for yourself.

Personally, I wouldn't let the promise of hours and decent pay as a graduate draw you into Bloomberg - I am sure you would realize that money gets substantially better in IB as you get further along into your career. There will most likely be some sort of cap/roof on the progression at Bloomberg as from my understanding they run a rather horizontal structure.

Both are very different career paths, none of them inherently wrong. Just personally I would take the IB.

Good luck, OP!

'I'm jacked... JACKED TO THE TITS!!'

 
Jun 30,2017

Thanks for the input, Governor Rhoades!

 
Jun 30,2017

Thanks for the spoiler :D However, I agree with Chuck

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7,548 questions across 469 investment banks. The WSO Investment Banking Interview Prep Course has everything you'll ever need to start your career on Wall Street. Technical, Behavioral and Networking Courses + 2 Bonus Modules. Learn more.

 
Jun 30,2017
 
Jun 30,2017

What's there to say? Do you want to work hard or hardly work?

 
Jun 30,2017
 
Jun 30,2017

Would take the IB offer personally

 
Jun 30,2017

Care to tell me a bit more? Thx

 
Jun 30,2017

If you are planning to take a masters ( preferably LBS/LSE) , it will give you some more time to network and to establish yourself there in UK. If not, according to the linkedin data, the university you attend ( I understood where you did your ug) has a lot of alumnis working in HK and SG. So take the IBD offer and network with the people on the other side ( concentrate on HK, because they cover the chinese region and the nearby ones where the knowledge of cantonese and mandarin will help you a lot)

If you want good hours and an okayish pay go to Bloomberg
and If you are focused on your future prospects then join IB

 
Jun 30,2017

How did you guess his uni? I mean its either UCL or Imperial, but how the hell did you figure out which?

 
Jun 30,2017

"think semi-targets in London"

KCL confirmed!

 
Jun 30,2017

"UK top 5 undergrad" KCL isn't even close imo

 
Jun 30,2017

And it cant be Cass because he has mentioned it as top 5 uni ( He might have thought about the world ranking and KCL comes 23 overall)

 
Jun 30,2017

One needs to be really brainwashed by adcom to call it a UK top 5. Top 3 for business are Oxbridge and LSE, next tier is Warwick/UCL/Imperial

 
Jun 30,2017

You got a point. I consider KCL as a weak semi target and its semi target only because of its proximity. but tbh according to what i believe here is my listing

Target:
Oxbridge,Imperial,UCL,LSE,Warwick

Semi Target:
Bristol,Durham,York,Nottingham,KCL,Bath, Cass Business School,Manchester,Edinburgh,St Andrews, Exeter

Weaker Semi Target( Sleeper Semi Target):
Glasgow, Leeds, Birmingham

Rest comes under Non target category

 
Jun 30,2017

Targets are only Oxford, Cambridge and LSE.

 
Jun 30,2017

You can say that but UCL, Warwick and Imperial are evitable from the target list and cannot be considered semi target due to the number of people ending up in IB every year

UCL is kind of a university which has a sort of uniform rankings across all dept and Dept of Economics at UCL is quite good and math savvy

Warwick's WBS has spend a lot on attracting potential employers to the campus for several events and the course esp math is intense

Imperial is known as the Quant heaven and that sums it up

 
Jun 30,2017

I don't go to KCL. My bad for confusing ppl with 'semi-targets in London'. What I really meant was my school is considered a semi by banks in the city, not that my school is actually in London

 
Jun 30,2017

I was referring to the overall Times ranking and the Guardians ranking (tbh, I think they are garbage rankings). It should be obvious which school I attend now.

 
Jun 30,2017

Alright fam! I really got confused. Anyways good luck with your choice and do update what you are planning to take.

 
Jun 30,2017

Thanks for the reply! Although I don't go to KCL. My bad for confusing ppl with 'semi-targets in London'. What I really meant was my school is considered a semi by the banks in the city, not that my school is actually in London (so think Edinburgh, St Andrews, Durham..). Tbh, not many from my school work in IBD in APAC, at least not many I could find on LinkedIn. Also, due to our alienation from London, networking isn't always accessible. I do agree that a master will allow me to establish myself in the UK a bit more.

 
Jun 30,2017

Well I am also an international student and will be attending a semi target ( not a strong semi target ) which is kind of like so away from London and I am really afraid about networking with the people but a lot of them have done it despite being away from London.

Well if you are planning to do a masters right away in UK, you have a chance of gaining Permanent Residency ( I guess you need to be in UK for 5 years) and if you are attending a Scottish university which has a course duration of 4 years and an extra year doing masters kind of nearly guarantee you a PE. So that's a point to consider. I am not an expert at this sp I would suggest you to do some research on internet. It will be better if you start your career in London and transfer to HK ( If you want to) after associate because London is a major financial hub and it has an upper hand when you compare you compare to HK.

 
Jun 30,2017

It is great that you have determined what you wanna do this early on. I pretty much squandered away my first two yrs at uni by partying too much without truly knowing what I want to do and where I want to be. Transitioning from the US education system to the UK one wasn't easy for me at the time. The way they do things/treat students here in the UK is very different.

With respect to PE, it doesn't work like that (I am guessing you are european and need not to worry about this). The duration of your degree won't be calculated into the 5 years needed. You have to work FT in the UK for five yrs to gain the PE. Therefore, five yrs in London -> HK/SH/BJ is the the plan.

 
Jun 30,2017

Thats a solid plan! Joining in South East Asia as a VP is a brilliant plan.

And yeah I am from South Asia

 
Jun 30,2017