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When scandal creates job opportunities on Wall Street

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Earlier this summer, BNP Paribas agreed to pay nearly $9 billion in fines and pled guilty to criminal charges for violating U.S. sanctions for its dealings with Sudan and other countries. Somewhat ironically, the historic settlement may be a boon to the job market in New York, at least when it comes to compliance hiring.

BNP last week reportedly hired a former senior official at the U.S. Treasury Department’s sanctions office, according to Reuters. Sean Thornton, a former chief counsel at Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, will begin at BNP as the head of its U.S. sanctions compliance group at the end of the month.

The big-name hire may not be the last. The bank is also reportedly relocating its U.S. sanctions compliance operations from Paris to New York. With a new head in the place and 3,600 miles separating the two cities, it’s likely BNP will need to make additional hires in the hope of not having to write another $9 billion check.

And in compliance hiring, money tends to follow the scandals. One of the best payers on Wall Street in terms of compliance is J.P. Morgan, a scandal-plagued organization in its own right that is now reportedly paying consultants north of $100 per hour.

Thornton didn’t come directly from the public sector – he left the Treasury Department in 2012 for a job at a private law office (one that represented BNP in its dealings with the U.S. government) – so it’s not like he was getting paid peanuts.

Meanwhile, in other people moves, Bank of America executive vice chairman Fares Noujaim abruptly left the firm earlier this month, according to CNBC. Noujaim and his enormous Rolodex are headed to boutique Guggenheim Partners.

This news is big, but the real story is how the move played out. Noujaim reportedly resigned to investment-banking head Christian Meissner in a phone call, then had his assistant come in to the bank to pick up his belongings, creating “anxiety in Bank of America’s top circles” over the potential of losing clients, according to CNBC.

A Window Into the Back Office (eFinancialCareers)

Here’s an in-depth look at what it’s like to work in investment banking operations, along with some hints on how to get the job.

Top Universities For a Job in Finance (eFinancialCareers)

Here’s a look at the top 20 university courses globally for economics and econometrics, ranked according to employer reputation. Here’s a different list, compiled by Business Insider, that looks at just U.S. colleges.

Goldman Internship Probe (WSJ)

Goldman Sachs is being investigated for allegedly hiring an intern who had ties to executives running Libya’s sovereign-wealth fund in an effort to win their business.

Some Serious Perks (Bloomberg)

Fortress Investment Group paid its four top executives $63 million last year. The publicly traded firm also gave them an additional $902,496 combined in 2012 and 2013 for expenses related to managing their own fortune.

No, This Is Not the Oscar’s (Business Insider)

The crowd outside the New York Stock Exchange for the Alibaba IPO was nuts. Although so was the share price. It was priced at $68, opened at $92 and then almost hit $100.

SAC Exodus Continues (Financial News)

At least five veteran employees have left Point72 Asset Management, formerly known as SAC Capital, within the last few weeks. The list includes Steven A. Cohen’s top research trader and two big-name portfolio managers.

Jefferies Getting Nordic (Financial News)

U.S. investment bank Jefferies is planning a new office in Sweden. The firm already hired someone to run the new office, which will likely open its doors toward the end of the year.

Buzz Around the Office

To Have and to Hold…and to Punch in the Face (Gawker)

Seven separate police agencies in the Buffalo area were required to break up a 100-person fistfight that occurred toward the end of a wedding reception. No one was arrested because, well, every single attendee appeared involved.

Quote of the Day: “Why not throw in the kids’ private tuitions? Where is the line between your wallet and the company’s?” – a compensation expert to Bloomberg on the Fortress Investment saga

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