Investment banks are conservative when it comes to hiring university students. They might say they like hiring liberal arts graduates, but our own research suggests otherwise: they really like to hire 21 year old finance and economics graduates from places like the London School of Economics and NYU Stern.
The Big Four accounting firms are a bit more open minded. They're still difficult to get into, but they're twice as easy to get into as top banks. The Financial Times reports, for example, that PWC accepts anything from 5% to 10% of applicants depending upon division and office. This compares to acceptance rates of just 1.8% at Goldman Sachs and 2% at J.P. Morgan.
Most notably though, the Big Four are a lot more open-minded about who they hire than banks are. While banks still have a tendency to recruit from among the middle and upper middle classes, firms like Deloitte are eliminating names and colleges from students' application forms in an effort to combat discrimination. Once in a while, the Big Four are also willing to make the kinds of idiosyncratic hires that would be inconceivable in investment banks. - PWC's strangest recent hire to its graduate program was reportedly a 55 year-old former farmer. The chance of someone with a similar profile becoming a first year analyst at J.P. Morgan is approximately 0%.
Separately, if you thought Steve Mnuchin's career at Goldman Sachs was gilded by family connections, how about Mike Esposito's? The new chairman of Goldman's financing group is the brother of Jim Esposito, chief strategy officer for the securities division and a likely contender for the role of head of securities across the firm. Mike's other brother, John, is head of the financial institutions group at Morgan Stanley and his father was CFO of Chase Manhattan in the 1980s. Who said Goldman Sachs likes to hire people who've excelled despite a difficult start in life?
When you're asked why you want to work for Goldman Sachs, don't say: "It seems like a really great place to work." (Business Insider)
Credit Suisse is cutting 1,300 jobs in Switzerland! (This is no big deal given that it promised to cut 1,600 last year). (Bloomberg)
James Gorman sold some Morgan Stanley stock for the first time since he became CEO. (Seeking Alpha)
The UK government promised Barclays and Goldman Sachs (among others) that it will ensure London remains a key financial hub aftet Brexit. (Bloomberg)
Thanks to MiFID II, equity researchers in Europe will be able to live by the sea and earn approx $100k selling their research to independent platforms. (Gadfly)
Hedge fund CQS has cut 20% of staff, says it's adapting. (Reuters)
A survey of all main strategies in machine learning. (Medium)
Anyone can now access Google's Deep Mind training platform. (Bloomberg)