N.Y. Area Accountants Feel Wall Street's Pain

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Wall Street's troubles are pinching demand for accountants among investment banks.

With record write-downs reported at large banks and investment firms, many of which are headquartered in the region around New York City, it's not surprising that hiring is slowing down. New York, New Jersey and Connecticut accountants needn't rush to these firms looking for a golden opportunity, at least not in the short-term.

For accountants and CPAs, financial services firms used to be the hot places to go for great job opportunities. But the impact of the sub-prime mortgage debacle is trickling down to at least one sector of the industry - investment banking. So, the once lucrative accounting spots in the region's investment banking departments appear to be drying up, says Ken April, president of April International, a New Rochelle, N.Y., financial executive recruiting firm.

April notes the tri-state area is particularly vulnerable to a downturn because such a preponderance of financial firms is based here. In addition, April notes, "We're also at the point in the year, with the holidays coming up, when hiring slows and everyone is waiting around to see what their bonuses will be like."

One sector of financial services that doesn't seem to be impacted is the alternative investment and asset management field. April hears that record profits in the region will continue to drive hiring, with accountants and CPAs reaping the benefits. "Hedge funds and asset management firms are still very busy and in need of CPAs," he adds. "Private equity is strong as well, and so we're seeing quite a bit of activity there, too, for accountants."

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