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Things can only get better

Does the Labour party’s 1997 election anthem apply to the current state of play for investment banks?

Chris O’Meara, Colm Kelleher and Josef Ackermann all seem to think so.

After announcing a smaller than expected 3Q loss of $700m (350m) due to the credit crunch, O’Meara, CFO at Lehman, said the worst had passed. Kelleher, current head of global capital markets at Morgan Stanley and soon to be CFO at the bank, pronounced the worst to be over after the bank reported a 7% drop in 3Q earnings grace à la credit crise. And Ackermann, chief exec of Deutsche Bank, is quoted as saying he expects the bank to meet its profit targets next year (albeit whilst shelving plans to add 6% more staff).

Factor in the Fed’s 50 basis point rate cut, Goldman’s ever-increasing profits and the Bank of England’s 10bn greasing of the wheels and it looks like investment banking jobs and pay will be more secure than recent events might suggest.

Your comments please…

Comments (2)

  1. Of course things can only get better. The fourth quarter won’t be worse that the third because it’s when bonuses get cut – people come in looking for their pile of money and walk away with a shiny penny. Simple.

    Eternal optimist Reply
  2. The fourth quarter will be a lot worse than anything we’ve seen so far. Remember that in 3Q banks had an active period in June and early July before things got really bad. They booked a lot of revenues then, so 3Q results were effectively only for half a bad quarter. 4Q will be bad all the way through. Fixed income’s going off and so’s equities. We also haven’t seen how this is playing out at the commercial banks like BarCap and RBS – their 3Q will results will be worse than the US brokerages and their 4Q will results will be very, very bad.

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