Jobs in Geneva, Zurich or (more specifically), Pfäffikon, have always had a certain appeal. Like a Bogner ski jacket, they are both functional and stylish. You can both live well, and earn well, far from the smuts of London and New York City.
As of last week, you can now earn even more in Switzerland. Or at least you can earn even more in Switzerland if you’re earning in Swiss francs in order to spend in euros or pounds, which might well be the case if you have children at school in the UK, or are one of the thousands of people living in France and working in Geneva.
So, which Swiss finance jobs should you go for? In its new salary survey for 2014-2015, recruitment firm Robert Walters says it’s the middle-office Swiss finance jobs that are experiencing all the hiring action: “Specialists in regulation, risk calculation and analysis were the most sought after within the sector,” they reflect. Front office hiring in Switzerland is reportedly “minimal” by comparison.
Front-office hiring in Switzerland may stay minimal. As the Financial Times points out, the strong Swiss franc is bad news for hedge funds like Brevan Howard or BlueCrest, which have offices in Switzerland but fee-paying investors elsewhere in Europe. If the franc stays strong, these hedge funds may yet be forced to repatriate some of their portfolio management and analyst jobs to London.
This eventuality could have a knock-on effect for middle-office jobs in Switzerland. For the moment, however, Swiss compliance and risk management jobs are the place to be. You can earn a fortune. Particularly in the roles below. Please note these figures are for salary alone. They all apply to candidates with seven to 12 years’ experience and are derived from jobs in Zurich.
The euro is currently close to parity with the Swiss franc, making the jobs below anything from 50% to 100% more lucrative than they are in Paris right now.
1. Compliance officer: CHF140k to CHF200k. (£107k to £153k.)
2. Private banker: CHF150k to CHF180k. (£115k to £137k)
3. Asset liability management/risk reserving for insurance companies: CHF140k to CHF180k. (£107k £137k)
4. Sell-side analyst: CHF130k to CHF190k: (£99k to £145k)
5. Risk manager: CHF130k to CHF180k: (£99k to £137k)
6. Portfolio manager: CHF130k to CHF180k: (£99k to £137k)
7. Quantitative analyst: CHF130k to CHF180k: (£99k to £137k)
8. Sales, asset management: CHF140k to CHF 180k: (£107k to £137k)
9. Private banking client advisor: CHF130k to CHF170k: (£99k to £130k)
10. Buy-side trader/dealer: CHF120k to CHF160k: (£92k to £122k)