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Perfect profiles for careers at Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Deutsche and others

Perfect profiles for banking jobs

Perfect profiles for banking jobs

If you aspire to work in banking but are uncertain as to what the biggest banks look for when they hire, we may have some answers for you.

We’ve combed through the eFinancialCareers database to look for the commonest features of people who work or have worked in nine of the biggest banks in the world (Goldman Sachs, J.P. Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup, UBS, Credit Suisse, Bank of America, and Barclays). Our database has millions of résumés in total, but we focused our attention on the 250,000 CVs that have been uploaded in the past year.

We screened these CVs on the basis of educational establishment, industry qualifications, languages spoken and sportiness. The results were pretty predictable – Goldman Sachs employs the most highly educated bankers from the biggest name universities in the world. It also employs the highest proportion of people with top class degrees (although they’re still in a tiny minority).  But there were some surprises. These included the fact that the most sporty bankers seem to work at UBS and that by far the most prevalent qualification at all banks is a Masters, with nearly 30% of people who’ve worked for Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank or UBS possessing a Masters qualification of some kind.

Based on our analysis, we’ve suggested what makes employees at each bank distinct. Our findings are not scientific. The results may be skewed by the prevalence of a large number of Europeans on our database. Nor have they been validated by each of the banks concerned. The variations between banks are small. And the most notable thing of all is the proportion of bankers at top firms who haven’t been to top Ango Saxon universities and who don’t have CFA or MBA qualifications and play sport in their spare time.


The perfect profile for a career at Goldman Sachs

Goldman Sachs: Big name universities, more CFAs than MBAs, sporty types 

Surprise, surprise: Compared to other banks, Goldman Sachs employs the most highly educated bankers from the biggest name universities, with the best academic records. It’s also comparatively keen on people who play sport.

Of 4,527 resumes loaded into our system over the past year with the words ‘Goldman Sachs’ written on them…

  • 10% were from Oxford or Cambridge, the London School of Economics or Imperial College.
  • 9.9% were from the Ivy League (here defined as Harvard, Yale, Wharton, Columbia, Princeton, Dartmouth, Duke)
  • 10.1% were from Mandarin or Cantonese speakers
  • 28.4% had a Masters or MSc qualification
  • 2.98% had a first class honours degree or a GPA of 4.0.
  • 17.3% had passed a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exam
  • 11.5% had an MBA.
  • 6.7% said they participated in ‘sport’.

The perfect profile for a career at J.P. Morgan 

J.P. Morgan: Meritocratic mavericks hired from off the beaten-track

If Goldman Sachs is comparatively keen on elite universities, the same can’t be said for J.P. Morgan.

Of 5,665 resumes loaded into our system over the past year with ‘J.P. Morgan’ written on them…

  • Just 6.5% were from Oxford or Cambridge, the London School of Economics or Imperial College
  • Just 6.1% were from the Ivy League

We infer that JPMorgan is less educationally elitist than Goldman Sachs. However, JPMorgan does like to hire people with CFAs (15.5%) and does like to recruit MBAs (10.2%) – just not as much as Goldman Sachs.

The perfect profile for a career at Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley: Ivy Leaguers, especially in the UK

Like Goldman, Morgan Stanley quite likes big name universities – especially in the UK.

Of 6,083 ‘Morgan Stanley’ resumes loaded into our system over the past year…

  • 7.8% were from the Ivy League universities in the U.S.
  • 8.8% were from Oxford or Cambridge, the London School of Economics or Imperial College.
  • 10.9% have an MBA.

The perfect profile for a career at UBS

UBS: Some sporty German and French language speakers with Masters Qualifications

There are no big surprises for UBS either: the Swiss bank likes well-educated French and German language speakers. More startlingly, people at UBS are disproportionately into sport.

Of the 8,393 ‘UBS CVs’ loaded into our database over the past year…

  • 32% speak either French or German (compared to 25% at Goldman Sachs)
  • Only 5.2% have a U.S. Ivy League education
  • 6.9% included the word ‘sport’ (compared to 4.5% of people at Citigroup or 4.2% of people at Bank of America, for example)
  • 28% have a Masters or MSc (higher than at any other bank except Deutsche) 

The perfect profile for a career at Barclays 

Barclays: Educationally ambivalent – seems to hire from a broad range of universities. Not big on the CFA

As a major UK bank, you might think that Barclays would hire a lot of people from elite UK universities like Oxford and Cambridge, Imperial or the London School of Economics. Actually, this doesn’t seem the case.

Of 10,729 ‘Barclays’ CVs loaded into our database (yes, Barclays bankers seem keen to move)…

  • Only 11.1% mentioned the CFA qualifications (versus 17.3% at Goldman Sachs)
  • Only 6.9% were from Oxford or Cambridge, Imperial or the London School of Economics (versus 10% at Goldman Sachs)
  • Only 2.9% had a Masters qualification (versus 28.4% at Goldman Sachs). 


The perfect profile for a career at Deutsche Bank

Deutsche Bank: Some highly educated Germans and Hindi speakers with a thing for sport

Entirely predictably, our database suggests that Deutsche Bank likes to employ Germans. Surprisingly, however, it doesn’t like to hire that many Germans. – The most common language spoken at Deutsche Bank is English. Along with Barclays (and – surprisingly – Bank of America) Deutsche Bank hires comparatively few CFAs.

Of 8,052 CVs loaded into our database citing ‘Deutsche Bank’…

  • 19% were from German speakers
  • 98% were from English speakers
  • 28.1% were from people with a Masters or MSc.

Elite university

Studied at Ivy League


Masters qualification

Passed a CFA qualification

Source: eFinancialCareers

Related articles:

CFA, MBA, ACA, ACCA or CIMA – which will get you a job that pays?

The top 25 Masters in Finance for getting a job in investment banking

CFA or MBA: Which is best for a finance career?



Comments (9)

  1. Would be interesting to see the division specific breakdown for these results for each bank, pretty sure that there will be a higher number of hindi/mandarin/cantonese speakers in the tech division than the IBD division, etc

  2. @ illuminati666

    You will see more in trading – and some of these guys will work on cross-continental deals.

  3. JP don’t employ more ‘meritocratic mavericks’, in addition to Ivy Leaguers and Oxbride graduates. It simply employs thousands of ops staff and highly educated continental Europeans.

    This article disregards the different profiles of each bank. J.P. Morgan employs double the amount of employees than GS does, many of which operational support staff based in Dorset (Bournemouth) where J.P. Morgan is the county’s largest private employer. After merging with Chase Manhattan in 2001, a bank specialising in Treasury and Custody it’s simply a larger and less niche-Investment Bank style financial organisation when compared to GS.
    If Goldman were to acquire State Street for instance the profile of its employees would change overnight. Also, why does the above story not include top-Universities from Europe’s mainland? JP and GS depend on a vast number of talented and continental Europeans who attended the top Universities in their countries of birth yet top European schools are completely disregarded and with an Anglo-American arrogance reminiscent of a bygone era are dubbed ‘meritocratic mavericks”. I guess, for foreigners they’ve done pretty well in the eyes of the author of this piece.

  4. Pingback: How To Perfectly Tailor Your Resume For Each Wall Street Bank

  5. So 87% of GS employees do not have an MBA, 84% do not have CFA, and 91% were not Oxbridge or LSE then!

  6. I would recommend on occasion doing at least a minute of research on some simple facts so as to avoid embarrassing yourselves. The Ivy League does not include Duke, but it does include Brown and Cornell, in addition to the schools you have listed.

  7. This research is focused on CV’s posted at Efinancial careers and hence focuses on people that actually want to leave the place at which they work.
    Any consideration given to the fact that this might be because these people do not feel at home at the place they work?

  8. @ JV.

    They may not actually want to leave – no harm in testing the water for better offers, particularly in areas where there is some hiring.

  9. “here defined as Harvard, Yale, Wharton, Columbia, Princeton, Dartmouth, Duke” If you can’t read, it’s only your problem. They have a right to call a salmon a whale, if they define that at the beginning. Besides, to many (especially at the Wall Street) the list of Ivies looks exactly like this.

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