Which bank has the worst hours on the street?

Are the rumors about 100 hour weeks at Moelis LA, etc, still true?

More curious about NY if anyone has info.

Also what is actually considered average? Feels like a lot of numbers are grossed up to try to sound more impressive nowadays.

Comments (116)

  • Associate 2 in CorpDev
Oct 10, 2019 - 4:04am

Worst hours on the street?

Bank: Lazard
Consulting firm: LEK
Accounting firm: EY

Oct 10, 2019 - 10:46am

From what I have heard both from friends at the firms and on here, some of the usual suspects tend to be (this pertains to hours, not culture as a whole):
Piper (certain groups, heard industrials and certain healthcare verticals can really suck)
Lazard (most groups, heard specific things about Boston TMT)
Moelis (not sure about group)
Houlihan (not sure about groups but have heard they are tough)
AGC (if you haven't heard of these guys, they have mandatory weekend hours...wtf )
UBS (have heard healthcare is nuts)
TAP Advisors (have heard it can be toxic and they still work you ass off even with very choppy deal flow

Additionally, a lot of other smaller shops that run super lean can be pretty tough on analysts. Have heard about some healthcare boutiques that really never take their foot off the gas

  • 8
  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Oct 18, 2019 - 3:02pm

Can you share the current strength of UBS IB In the US? I heard from a contact that the return offer rate was very low for interns. Was this a one-time thing or do you think it will happen again next summer?

Oct 20, 2019 - 12:38pm

Huh, thats interesting. Is that a factor of an improving culture, or is there just less deal flow nowadays for the group?

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Oct 10, 2019 - 1:33pm

Curious about Moelis LA - they used to be the definition of a sweatshop but some posters have mentioned things changing quite significantly?

Most Helpful
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 10, 2019 - 2:34pm

Have heard that BMO Mining group up in Canada is a sweatshop

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 11, 2019 - 6:30pm

My roommate works in the Toronto office. He was pulling consistent all-nighters when they were on the Barrick gold deal a few months back

  • Associate 2 in CorpDev
Oct 13, 2019 - 4:39pm

Agreed - from my time in one of the EBs... damn, didn't miss the consistent all-nighters at all.

Oct 10, 2019 - 5:27pm


Surprised no mentions of Jefferies, especially their top groups...

Jefferies in Houston is a sweatshop. They're also known for paying their Houston office higher across the board than their other groups as well.

  • Intern in IB-M&A
Oct 10, 2019 - 5:37pm

Moelis LA has completely chilled out. Very much a work hard, play hard type of bank but culture is way better than what it used to be. Hours are tough under a few MDs but they have been working to get rid of the upper-level people who made the bank hell. The place is also a total frat house.

Oct 11, 2019 - 4:32pm

A lateral in my group has a roommate that works at Moelis. Still absolute hell according to him.

Han Lee
Oct 11, 2019 - 6:35pm

Well, I take the same elevator as those guys, and I've actually asked them before if the rumors were true that they worked about 100 hours a week. They said no, I think they work more like 80-90 hours.

Also, they don't seem to stressed judging by the way they act and talk during my elevator rides. It's possible their reputation doesn't actual reflect the reality at Moelis.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Oct 12, 2019 - 4:13am

Laz hours in NY are consistently 100+, same goes for SF healthcare. For some reason, the SF tech group is pretty chill like 60-90 hours on non-busy weeks, one friend in that group worked 9-5 at some slow times in the year and they service Google, which seems like a decent gig.

Interested in hearing about some other groups in banks that are strong with relatively lower hours.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
Oct 12, 2019 - 5:13am

Have a friend that works at Greentech. Hear the hours are absolutely brutal there

Oct 14, 2019 - 8:04pm

Heard this too. I feel like a lot of higher powered boutiques that aren't in the "EB" class can be just as brutal.

  • 1
  • Analyst 3+ in 
Oct 14, 2019 - 8:13pm

Yes, it is because they are still trying to make a name for themselves and are still in the rapid growth stage. This applies for firms like FT Partners as well. I guess FT Partners is a little different because at least they have deal flow compared to Greentech, which I have heard will literally throw analysts a pitch at 12am and want it early morning. Worst part is that most of these pitches are useless and will not go anywhere and the MDs know it as well.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 12, 2019 - 5:22pm

Does anyone have any actual info on Moelis LA since they were once the benchmark for a slaveship/sweatshop? Seems like all the information is conflicting.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 27, 2019 - 12:50pm

Well most analysts aren't going to tell you the truth and if you look at this thread the answers range from a chill frathouse to a slaveship.

Oct 14, 2019 - 5:41am

In addition to the ones listed above, I have heard from a VP at another BB that BAML Healthcare is absolutely brutal. She essentially told me that she hates talking down on another group/firm, but practically begged me to try going anywhere else before going there. Not sure how accurate this is, but she seemed very serious about it

Oct 15, 2019 - 12:34am

Can confirm Laz Paris is brutal, worked on a buyside mandate with them and they were consistently answering emails and hopping on the phone until I'd leave the office around 1am...NYC time...

  • 3
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Oct 15, 2019 - 2:19am

This may sound like a silly question, but what exactly are bad hours?

I'll start:

I work from 10 am to 2 am Monday to Thursday. Leave around 10pm most Fridays. And work Sundays from around 11am to 11pm. Saturdays off. Total hours are about 85 - 95 / wk pretty consistently. I'm also always varying degrees of busy throughout the day, not sitting around waiting for comments. I work slightly more than most analysts in my group, but I'd say this is pretty typical. I don't really consider these brutal hours.. tiresome at times. Definitely limits my social life, but I figure they will improve gradually with time. I can also usually squeeze in a workout 2-4 times per week around dinner time so I'm in pretty good shape.

I'm a second year analyst at a BB in a coverage group.

Oct 15, 2019 - 11:07am

This is pretty bad. Do you honestly feel that working until 2AM during the week and into 11PM Sunday night is not bad? I'm assuming you just started your 2nd year. You will definitely feel differently / a lot more burned out 3 - 4 years into your career if you decide to stick around. The lifestyle will gradually begin to take its mental toll.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 15, 2019 - 1:09pm

This is bad for a 2nd year analyst - currently a 2nd year in a top BB group, and me / my friends in other groups definitely aren't working 12 hours every Sunday anymore. Or working till 10pm on Friday ... that just seems excessive.

The weekday hours make sense, but as a 2nd year analyst think you're generally able to take more control over your schedule / work less weekends.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
Oct 15, 2019 - 3:53pm

Analyst 1 in IB - Gen:

I work from 10 am to 2 am Monday to Thursday. Leave around 10pm most Fridays. And work Sundays from around 11am to 11pm. Saturdays off. Total hours are about 85 - 95 / wk pretty consistently.
I can also usually squeeze in a workout 2-4 times per week around dinner time so I'm in pretty good shape.

Compared to my bank as a 2nd year analyst, weekday hours are pretty comparable though everyone is required to be in the office by latest 9:30am. There are usually weekly or biweekly events that require everyone to come into the office around 8am. Fridays are usually until 9pm or so. Sundays are usually 12pm to 10pm with the flexibility to work from home. Saturdays are usually 4-6 hours of work (afternoon and early evening) with the ability to work from home (though the office is pretty dead on Saturdays). Most people try to avoid coming into the office as much as they can.

Things are usually busy enough in the evening that analysts can go to the gym for an hour or so or have a longer dinner once every few weeks. Otherwise, dinners are usually ordered and eaten at your desk or in the break room for 20-30 minutes. You could theoretically go to the gym but you'll just be up until 3 or 4am instead, which is not desirable.

1st year analysts usually have it slightly worse, which can depend on how eager they are to be the best ever though this obviously disappears after a few months once they start to feel a little burnt out.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 16, 2019 - 4:52pm

This is also really bad lol ... I either work or have friends at the top 2 BBs, and the only groups that work these hours consistently are MS M&A and MS FIG.

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 21, 2019 - 8:14am

You know an investment banker is trying to deflate his hours when he uses the term "usually" with respect to his hours. You too scared to admit you pulling 100 hour weeks bro?

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Feb 16, 2020 - 10:29am

hi I work 12 hours a day on average but have to ask how do you manage to stay focused and not get tired? how do you fit in workouts? I am struggling and nothing is working. can I get in touch with you to know more? thank you

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 16, 2019 - 1:48pm

Have heard that MS LA works harder than Moelis LA and that other LA shops such as CS also get worked super hard? LA sweatshop culture seems to keep going ...

  • Associate 2 in IB-M&A
Oct 18, 2019 - 12:55pm

Culture is great, but not a frat house. Work hard, play hard situation originates from people working together who actually like each other at all levels. You'll work long hours at any bank, especially at the highest performers.

Oct 18, 2019 - 1:22pm

Jefferies M&A towards the end of 2017 and early 2018 was by far the worst I've ever heard, based on stories from credible sources. They had a number of analysts quit (a couple without jobs), and hired more VP & MD level people without replacing the analysts. Sundays to Thursdays were 3-4am, Fridays were until 1-2am, Saturdays were ~6 hours of work. This went on consistently for at least 4-5 months. Virtually all process work.

Nowadays I believe it is improved. Healthcare is also a shout as a hard-working group. Virtually all of their analysts leave to PE.

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Oct 20, 2019 - 7:48pm

Can say that it has gotten significantly better at FT as recently as over the last two years. They've brought on 20+ analysts across offices this year and plan to do so again next year for a ~140 person shop, it's actually been decent.

Right now it's something like 10am-12 or 1 most weeknights, maybe 9pm Fridays, though I have a few 2 or 3am nights interspersed on tight turnarounds. Plus the option to work from home on the weekends a few hours as needed.

The hours have improved notably the past few years and the bonus range still starts where Street typically ends.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
Oct 20, 2019 - 1:39am

In terms of brand name, I think there's HL, JPM (small) and Stephens. Evercore just started. Everything else I believe is no-name boutiques.

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
Oct 20, 2019 - 1:38am

The ones with no deal flow so basically the terrible banks.

The better question is: Which banks have the best hours in proportion to great deal flow or which banks are the most efficient with their work?

  • Prospect in IB-M&A
Oct 21, 2019 - 8:12am

Investment Banking is an inherently inefficient industry. Usually MDs want to cover their bases with respect to scenarios and you know very few of them are used. Your question in itself is inefficient as how you would measure efficiency is relative. Of course you'd propose 10 or so models and have a massive pitchbook to back that up. You also never gave a specific answer to my question.

  • Associate 2 in IB - Ind
Oct 27, 2019 - 12:07pm

It's very group / MD specific. Typically the senior MDs that have the relationships and know the industry in and out - require the least amount of BS work. On the flip side, a junior MD that is not confident in himself and is trying to build his name will grind associates / analysts on every project to cover his ass.

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