Citi's European cash equities business is in the process of being 'improved'. People have been leaving from equities sales and trading. Now it seems that people are leaving from equity research too. Some of the departures may be voluntary.
We understand that Natalia Mamaeva, a director and VP-level head of the pan-European capital goods team at Citi, has left for personal reasons. Bilal Azim, an associate salesman on Citi's capital goods team who started at the bank in 2012, is understood to have left for a competitor. And we understand that Marcus Diebel, a media analyst at the bank who joined from J.P. Morgan in July 2014, is leaving soon after disappointment with the pace of his progression.
Citi declined to comment on the departures, although insiders at the bank confirmed Azim and Mamaeva's exit and Diebel's departure was reportedly announced during a recent equity research meeting.
The exits come despite reports that Citi's equity research bonuses, which were disappointing in 2014, were okay this year. However, this may be over-egging the satisfaction levels at the US bank. "Bonuses in Citi's equities business weren't really that great," says one headhunter, requesting that he remain anonymous. "Juniors got 20-30% of base," says an insider, adding that far more generous packages are on offer at smaller banks like Sanford Bernstein.
Citi's exits leave it with some big holes in its capital goods team, which now comprises just Klas Bergelind, who was hired last year from Nomura. Headhunters say capital goods analysts are in hot demand at the moment: "It's a very large sector and there just don't seem to be many people doing it," says one. Bergelind be very busy for a while.
Elsewhere in equity research, however, we understand that Citi has been hiring. David Townsend has joined from BP as an associate focused on the energy sector. Aaron Guy is joining from Barclays in May. Guy will be a director in Citi's newly formed real estate research team. Max Nimmo from Standard Life Investments is joining Guy's team as an associate. And Owen Jones is joining from Espirito Santo in the next month as an analyst in the diversified industrials sector.