Tom Leake, Deutsche Bank’s much prized head of global equity structuring has resigned. Rumour has it that he’s off to Goldman Sachs.
Deutsche insiders confirm that Leake resigned yesterday. Aged just 36, he joined Deutsche in 2009 after graduating in physics from Cambridge University in 2002. Headhunters say Leake “is really brilliant” and has resigned to join another bank (you can see him in action here). That bank is said to be Goldman Sachs. The WSJ reports that he’s joining as head of equity structuring in EMEA – seemingly a smaller role.
Goldman has equity derivatives gaps to fill after two of its own senior equity derivatives bankers left for Citi in March. Leake would help plug that gap.
Deutsche Bank is, needless to say, facing problems as the year-end approaches. With the bank valiantly trying to cut costs, the expectation is that cash bonuses at Deutsche will be cut to nothing this year. Meanwhile, deferred stock bonuses have halved in value and may be withheld if the bank makes a loss.
It’s unusual for senior bankers to quit this close to bonus time. but Leake clearly felt he had little to lose. It’s been a particularly bad year in European equity derivatives, as highlighted by the chart from Deutsche Bank itself below.
Money aside, why is Leake leaving a role where he’s global head to become regional head at Goldman? Does he know something we don’t about Deutsche’s plans for its equity derivatives business? “Goldman is simply a safer seat right now” says one headhunter, speaking off the record.