Now that Christmas and New Year's celebrations have been dispensed with, the really big seasonal marker is looming into view: bonus time. If you work in finance, January and February are when bonuses are paid - unless you have the poor luck to be laid off before the event, in which case you won't receive a bonus after all.
This was the unfortunate fate of Sunny Tadjudin, a former distressed debt banker at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in Hong Kong. Despite generating 76% of profits for the distressed debt group over a 30 month period, Tadjudin was sacked before bonus time and received no bonus at all. The good news? She's just been awarded $500k in damages after a judge deemed that B of A did indeed dump her to avoid paying a bonus. The bad news? Tadjudin had been asking for $3.7m and it took her seven years to get the $500k - she was sacked at the end of 2007. She also sought redress in Hong Kong, where the legal system views bankers favourably. By comparison, City staff who are unfairly let go in the next few weeks will find bonus reparations far harder to come by.
Separately, if you're looking for a job in a quantitative London hedge fund, the Financial Times has a good pointer on where to study. The paper reports that US hedge fund AQR Capital has just donated $10m to the London Business School to create 'the AQR Institute of Asset Management.' Cliff Asness, co-founder of AQR, says he hopes the new institute will provide “access to talented people” both for recruitment and joint research. AQR's move is reminiscent of hedge fund Man Group's (larger) £14m investment to create an Institute of Quantitative Finance at Oxford University seven years ago.
A lot of people are leaving the Prudential Regulation Authority. Remaining staff are being made to put in a lot of overtime. (Telegraph)
Staff working for brokerage firm GFI have no interest in working for brokerage firm BGC and have had clauses added to their contracts so that if BGC's purchase of GFI goes ahead, they can quit. (Financial Times).
‘Blue’ and ‘Alpha’ are the top codenames in UK M&A deals. (Telegraph)
The French 'super-tax' will quietly expire on February 1st. (RT News)
RBS could face a new £5bn fine following an investigation into US bond sales. Shares in the bank have been falling as a result. (Guardian)
A lot of people will be applying for jobs today. Here's how to make sure you make it past the interview. (Daily Express)
JPMorgan earned the highest fees in Europe last year, slightly ahead of Deutsche Bank. (Financial News)
JPMorgan would like to point out that some of its employees are talented photographers. (Twitter)