Monday, April 14, 2008

Investment Banking Salary and Bonus

Last year, two among the top three earners of Hong Kong University graduates worked for investment banks. They both made close to HK$1.2 million (c.US$150,000). Not bad for a first year job, however the number is not exciting enough. Asset management is the rising star of investment banking. Let me give you some exciting figures on one of my recent successful fund management candidates.

Candidate Profile
Position hired: CEO, Fund Management, Asia
Age: 46
IB experience: 21 years (London, Europe, New York, Hong Kong)
Qualifications: BA, CFA
Length of resume: two pages

Summary of Compensation Package
Base salary: US$475,000
Housing: US$240,000
Target bonus: US$1,900,000
Defer bonus: US$475,000
LTIP: US$140,000
Sign on RSU: US$1,000,000
Guaranteed first year bonus: US$790,000

Other Benefits
Retirement plan
Life insurance (self and family)
Medical (self and family)
Annual leave
Club (membership + debenture)
Children education
Car (parking, driver & fuel)

Thoughts on Money
Actually these are numbers on paper. The take-home money could have no ceiling. In terms of money making, you don’t need to target yourself to be John Mack or Hank Paulson. A low profile hedge fund manager can make more money than Wall Street CEOs. In the field of investment banking, salary only contribute a small portion of your total income, bonus is the real money. One of my hedge fund manager candidates reported to have made US$29 million in 2006 when he was only 29. (Note: The other side of the story is: if your fund isn’t making money for the bank and your clients, you’ll loss your job.)

Summary on Candidate Resume
This candidate has 21 years of IB experience, however his resume is only two pages. If you are doing well, you don’t have to write long. Your movements, i.e. your career history speak for yourself. The candidate worked for a total of three employers across three continents in the past 21 years. Started as an option trader and became a head of international equity mutual funds in 10 years time. Each of his movements was upward movements.

More resume writing tips from Jimmy Sweeney's Amazing Resume Creator

Investment Banking Salary

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