An Investment Banker works for an institution dedicated to making money from securities investments. Companies use these Investment Banks to sell their stocks which helps the company make money. Investors use the banks to help buy these stocks. The Investment Banker advises the companies on the best securities to issue, how best to price them, and underwrite security investment.
- Excellent compensation, with bonuses.
- Easy to see growth from strong efforts.
- Your success is easily visible and well respected.
Base salaries for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Year Analysts at large banks are $85K, $90K, and $95K, with year-end bonuses between 70% and 100% of those numbers (lower percentages in earlier years and higher toward the end).
Average total compensation ranges might be $140K – $160K, $160K – $180K, and $180K – $200K for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Year Analysts.
Investment Bankers work long hours in an office setting. The position is considered stressful, but rewarding. You can expect to work close to 100 hours a week at times – possibly more. During a typical day, you can expect to:
- Attracting new clients through sales books.
- Creating “pitchbooks,” or books used to attract investors.
- Prepping offers for clients and investors.
- Preparing projections for investments.
Much of this work is done via email, phone calls, meetings, and text message. Much of the morning is spent preparing for afternoon meetings with clients to determine final deals. In the evening, they spend much of their time with publishing experts to revise and rewrite marketing materials.
- Social Skills – Oral/Written Communication
- Analytical Skills
- Office software for word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and email.
- Data Analysis software understanding.
- Knowledge of the stock market and events that may cause a rise or fall.
- Advanced business knowledge and how to attract investors.
An Investment Banker will work long hours, especially at an entry level. Days typically do not start until 10am, but can last until 2am or later. You will need to have a busy internship and attend a prestigious school. Investment Banking is one field where your school name will matter. Banks often will come to the schools to recruit new employees.
There is not much room for a social life as an Investment Banker. You can expect late nights as well as eating meals in the office frequently. Some weeks may be less intense than others, but there will not be much predictability to this. It is a go-go-go industry. If you enjoy working in a fast-paced, constant environment, you may find the high salary and prestige a fair compensation.
As with other financial careers, there is a growing emphasis on data analysis and technology. With centuries of financial data and stock charts to analyze, financial analysts will be able to better determine patterns in the markets and figure out the best way to raise capital for their clients.
New opportunities such as Cryptocurrency are also disrupting markets. This newer security (an alternative currency) is still being studied for money-making opportunities.
- Selling in yard sales and helping with fundraising.
- Working with math problems.
- Scorekeeping for sports teams.
- Doing deals
- Interested in investing
- Bachelor’s Degree – Finance, Economics, Accounting, Business Administration
- School choice matters – attending an Ivy League, or internationally renowned university, is considered a standard.
- Grades matter heavily to recruiters and hiring managers.
- Summer associate internship during undergrad
- Master’s Degree – Business Administration
- Apply to Ivy League or similarly prestigious colleges.
- Participate in business and marketing clubs.
- Intern more than once in a financial firm
- Get really good grades
- Investment banks usually recruit on campus at the most prestigious universities for summer associate positions. This usually occurs the fall semester of your junior year.
- You will need good grades to get an interview.
- Your summer associate internship will occur during the summer of your junior year and by fall of your senior year, if you did a good job, they will give you an offer for full-time position for the following fall.
- This website does a great job of telling you how to break into investment banking: https://www.mergersandinquisitions.com/how-to-get-into-investment-banking/
Go to this link for a complete guide to a career in investment banking: https://www.mergersandinquisitions.com/investment-banking-career-path/
- Investopedia – Learn about basic securities investment.
- The Wall Street Journal
- Investor's Business Daily
- Take Action Now:
- Financial Industry Regulatory Authority – Learn about licensure for analysis
- Global Academy of Finance and Management – Learn about (or start!) financial analysis certifications.
- CFA Institute – More information about Securities