Wharton or LSE undergrad for investment banking?

I am lucky enough to get accepted into Wharton and LSE (for Maths and Econ). I am currently torn between the two universities. If i do go to Wharton, i will likely double major in Maths and Econ or major minor in the two subjects.

Thing is, till now, i am not sure whether i would like to work in europe or the united states. Both are amazing places, and the US has wall street while London is the financial capital of the world. I am however, VERY interested in working in an investment bank in the far east (where i am from) and australia. However, fundamentally, i would like to work internationally.

I am have also visited both universities and like them both equally.

If i would like to work internationally, which university would place better for an investment bank?

WSO Elite Modeling Package

  • 6 courses to mastery: Excel, Financial Statement, LBO, M&A, Valuation and DCF
  • Elite instructors from top BB investment banks and private equity megafunds
  • Includes Company DB + Video Library Access (1 year)

Comments (20)

Apr 25, 2012 - 2:08am

haha honestly man, your damn talented so it doesn't really matter too much I would think since you arent majoring in Finance at Wharton it may barely hinder your chances compared to LSE but it most likely wont have that much of an impact.

Again i cant judge any of these but if you are looking INTERNATIONALLY then LSE is better in my opinion but only by a small margin......

take my advice with a grain of salt....

I want a lady on the street, but a freak in the bed, Go Bucks!!
Apr 25, 2012 - 2:32am

LSE is more internationally recognized (in my personal experience). You will also network with a more diverse group of people there. American institutions can be rather insular.

Given your goal of returning to the Far East, I would pick LSE.

And congrats on being accepted into 2 very fine institutions. Well done!

__________
Apr 25, 2012 - 2:34am

Wharton > LSE

London >>>>>>>>>>>> Philly.

[quote]The HBS guys have MAD SWAGGER. They frequently wear their class jackets to boston bars, strutting and acting like they own the joint. They just ooze success, confidence, swagger, basically attributes of alpha males.[/quote]
Learn More

300+ video lessons across 6 modeling courses taught by elite practitioners at the top investment banks and private equity funds -- Excel Modeling -- Financial Statement Modeling -- M&A Modeling -- LBO Modeling -- DCF and Valuation Modeling -- ALL INCLUDED + 2 Huge Bonuses.

Learn more
Apr 25, 2012 - 2:58am

If you wanna be an i banker in HK/Singapore, Wharton. Any day of the week buddy. Wharton is anyway known for its tremendous finance prog, but more importantly i-banks in HK/SG are Ivy League whores - and whe nI say Ivy League I include Oxbridge, but not LSE.

But more than that...I just feel Wharton will give you a better education. Huge bias to US unis, I know, but there you go.

Apr 25, 2012 - 8:28am
bbjhva:
If you wanna be an i banker in HK/Singapore, Wharton. Any day of the week buddy. Wharton is anyway known for its tremendous finance prog, but more importantly i-banks in HK/SG are Ivy League whores - and whe nI say Ivy League I include Oxbridge, but not LSE.

But more than that...I just feel Wharton will give you a better education. Huge bias to US unis, I know, but there you go.

Really? the thing is i am actually from Hong Kong and over here, i get the impression that LSE is a lot more well known (hong kong being a former british colony). I may really be wrong though. If i do go to LSE, would that disadvantage me a lot in Hong Kong and Singapore?

Apr 25, 2012 - 8:43am
bbjhva:
If you wanna be an i banker in HK/Singapore, Wharton. Any day of the week buddy. Wharton is anyway known for its tremendous finance prog, but more importantly i-banks in HK/SG are Ivy League whores - and whe nI say Ivy League I include Oxbridge, but not LSE.

But more than that...I just feel Wharton will give you a better education. Huge bias to US unis, I know, but there you go.

lol.
OP, take this with a grain of salt.

Apr 25, 2012 - 8:53am

This doesn't address your question, but, if I recall, Wharton doesn't offer "majors". Everyone gets a BS in Economics. You have "concentrations" in various disciplines (finance, accounting, stat, marketing --- double concentration in finance and accounting is the most popular "banking" route). That's not to say you couldn't do an additional degree in the College. I think the economics major in the College is a BA.

Apr 25, 2012 - 11:20am

I'm not familiar with Wharton, but banks at LSE will recruit not only for London offices but many times Hong Kong and Singapore as well. I think that the academic reputations and recruiting of the two schools are about equal, and you're going to be able to get a great job in IB at both of them. If it was me the decision should come down to other factors:

  1. Where do you want to live? Philly doesn't compare to London in my mind, and at LSE you can network more directly with bankers who work in the City without having to travel far.

  2. What kind of academic teaching style do you prefer? There are world-famous professors at both schools, but teaching is not really an emphasis for them at LSE. It's more of an on-your-own environment than I expect Wharton (like other US universities) would be.

I think if it was me and I wanted to end up in Asia-Pacific eventually then I would pick LSE, solely for the better experience of living in London. Having said that, you really can't go wrong here.

Apr 25, 2012 - 11:29am

I would say LSE solely out of the fact that it is in London. Great place to network

"History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme."
Apr 25, 2012 - 5:49pm

lol all the people who say LSE underestimate Wharton greatly. Wharton is arguably even more well known than LSE in the business/ibanking/financial field. The Indian's worship Wharton and lets be frank, Wharton IS the top business school in the world along with Harvard. LSE on its best day couldn't beat Wharton on its worst

Apr 25, 2012 - 5:54pm

If you want to work outside of the States and you're certain about that, I'd say go with LSE. Given you want to major in math and economics I'd also recommend it. Wharton won't give you a very good theoretical economic foundation, but will give you a much better finance background in your 4 years there. Given your situation and desires though, I'd go with LSE. Plus London rocks, other than being expensive.

I hate victims who respect their executioners
Apr 25, 2012 - 10:14pm

Let me throw this at you. I know I said go with Wharton over LSE any day. I thought it was self-explanatory but given what others are saying, apparently it isn't. Let me clarify:

1) I have a buddy who has a Masters in Econ from LSE. He can't find a job in Singapore. He's a smart guy, too. I somehow just don't see that happening with a Wharton grad with a Finance/Econ background.

2) The point about recruiters from HK coming to LSE is probably a good one. But if you're at Wharton and are even semi-good at networking, you can easy land a job outside OCR by just speaking to execs at banks etc in HK. Assuming you speak Mandarin/Cantonese, this task would be exponentially easier.

3) Globally, Wharton to me is just well above LSE. I could be biased as I mentioned previously too given that I did my ugrad in the States, but I also have a lot of friends in LSE/UK in general and the calibre/quality of wharton people is significantly higher. I'm sure this would be picked up by recruiters.

4) Lastly - you want to work outside of the US - you say that now, but 3-4 years of uni is a long time, and NY (despite my other pro-HK posts) is definitely the world's financial capital. If you get keen on the US, Wharton will open all the doors that LSE just cannot. Also, if you want to remain in Finance for a long time, the Wharton brand yet again will pip LSE's, IMHO.

If you want more detailed explanations feel free to PM me. If money ain't a concern, I'd seriously recommend Wharton.

Apr 25, 2012 - 10:30pm
bbjhva:

1) I have a buddy who has a Masters in Econ from LSE. He can't find a job in Singapore. He's a smart guy, too. I somehow just don't see that happening with a Wharton grad with a Finance/Econ background.

Thats crazy!
Apr 26, 2012 - 10:54am

The fact that someone's friend that went to one of these schools can't find a job has nothing to do with this. LSE grads, like Wharton's, get some of the best jobs out of undergrad in finance. There's no point in arguing that. I'm sure there are stories of random Wharton kids who can't find jobs in NY too.

The job you get in four years won't be down to the fact that you chose Wharton over LSE or vice versa. Both schools put you in the same position in that respect. So the decision should come down to which school is the better fit and where you think you'll excel. LSE, like I said before, is going to be a lot more independent learning than Wharton. If you like that, go with LSE; if not, go with Wharton. You must have opinions about living in Philly vs. London. Take that into consideration.

I'm rambling a little, but don't just pick Wharton because you'll "get a better job" out of there than LSE. Pick it because you actually would rather attend the school.

Start Discussion

Total Avg Compensation

August 2021 Investment Banking

  • Director/MD (10) $853
  • Vice President (36) $363
  • Associates (211) $232
  • 2nd Year Analyst (121) $152
  • 3rd+ Year Analyst (28) $146
  • Intern/Summer Associate (102) $144
  • 1st Year Analyst (450) $132
  • Intern/Summer Analyst (359) $82