(Closed) Any Investment Banking Bees Out There??

posted 7 years ago in Career
Post # 4
Member
1309 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2011

I don’t, but my FI works in investment banking! He just started this year. He’s been trying to get into finance for a couple of years, but obviously it’s not the best time to be wiggling your foot in the door. He got a BS in Economics and started off doing very low-level retail banking (call center sales, etc). He took a few courses for a Masters in Finance but then he discovered… drumroll… the CFA, which stands for Chartered Financial Analyst.

The CFA exam is a three level test that is extremely hard to pass, but at the end you get the CFA designation and it opens a lot of doors. It’s about $1,000 to take each level of the test but obviously that’s more affordable than an Master’s degree.

My guy is getting ready to take it this weekend. He’s been studying like a madman. The good news is that he has kept trying to get jobs even with all the doors slamming on him and finally this spring he interviewed with a VERY prestigious company for an amazing job, and he got it! He’s getting tons of hands-on experience he would normally have to wait years to get working in the bowels of a firm. He’s making way better money, too.

It IS an intense career path. We know he’s going to be working long hours for probably the rest of his career. The older people at his company work all hours of the night, while at this stage in his career he just works 9-10 hour days. But he loves it and I’m game. I can’t imagine what it will be like having kids, though!

Post # 5
Member
3614 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I work in finance/banking, but not in IB. I got my MBA right after college. Honestly, without the work experience, it was useless in finding that first job. Noone knew what to do with a 23-year old MBA grad whose longest previous experience was a month long internship. Not having a work visa in the US did not help matters. I started in an ad-agency at a very low pay basically doing office work because noone else would take me. It took me three job changes and several years to get to my current position. Most of my friends going for careers in finance suffered similar fates. The only ones who got grabbed right upon graduation were ones that were going for careers in consulting and audit, either IT or accounting. Of course this won’t apply to you assuming you’re already a US citizen and have a 3-4 years of experience under your belt. I think getting your degree from a school that’s specifically known for finance helps too. I went to UC Irvine who didn’t attract a lot of IB employers at the time.

Post # 6
Member
3762 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I agree with PP.  No matter what the degree, the work experience really does matter.  I did my undergrad in Accounting and Finance (double major) and then did my MBA.  Every summer I worked full time as an intern and throughout the school year I held a part time job.  All jobs were in the business field (investing, accounting, tax, audit, etc).  I now work in Project Management.  

I think also in these tough times limiting your career search to Investment Banking is a pretty narrow path.  Going into Finance or something a bit more general might be more beneficial and then see where that takes you.  

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