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Morning Coffee: Goldman wants juniors to stop working all-night and weekends. Fixed income traders earn 2x more in hedge funds

Tired banker

Working practices at investment banks have been under scrutiny since the death of Moritz Erhardt, the Bank of America intern who died in the summer after allegedly working 72 hours straight. Today, it seems that Goldman Sachs, at least, is doing something about the long-hours issue.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Goldman has spent the last year trying to improve the work life balance of its junior employees after appointing a task force of senior staff to look into the problem of overwork. That task force has now completed its work and concluded that weekend and evening work should be avoided. The task force concluded that weekend should be reserved for ‘client critical activity’ and that senior bankers need to be more specific about what they want juniors to do. Goldman has reportedly created new technology making it easier for senior bankers to communicate the kind of information they need clearly without using email, in a form accessible anywhere. When a senior analyst commissions a client presentation (AKA pitchbook), the task force advises the production of short outline rather than the entire thing.

Goldman’s formation of the task force predated Erhardt’s death. It appears to have been prompted by the firm’s need to retain millennials, who often prioritize leisure over money and status. In July, an ex-Goldman employee who left the bank voluntarily after a few years told us the bank was struggling to retain junior staff and that turnover this year had been very high. A new feedback system had been implemented to gauge junior bankers’ disgruntlement, he said. Goldman denied this at the time.

Separately, a new study by Greenwich Associates and Johnson Associates confirms thathedge funds are the place to be if you work in fixed income. Fixed income professionals working at hedge funds earned average pay of $1m in 2012 according to the study, versus $460k for fixed income professionals at traditional asset management firms. Equity traders at hedge funds earned $660k at both hedge funds and traditional asset managers. Unfortunately, banks weren’t part of the comparison.

Meanwhile:

UBS has beaten its profit forecasts. (CNBC)

Credit Suisse’s ex-chairman says Brady Dougan’s CHF90m payout seems to have been a mistake. (Reuters)

When journalists find jobs in hedge funds. (FinAlternatives)

Bank of America has invited Citi to hire its brokers. (DealBreaker)

Sage advice for a northerner coming to work in the City of London. (Finance-interns)

 

 

 

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