eFC Briefing: Joining the Corporate Fold

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Corporate development roles draw some dealmakers from Wall Street. Citi's Pandit overhauling bonus structure to boost cooperation among divisions.

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With strategic acquisitions a relative bright spot within today's lean mergers and acquisitions landscape, some laid-off investment bankers are landing as in-house dealmakers with their former corporate clients, observes theDeal.com. Research analysts are eyeing the corporate development arena, too. Still, even giant corporations' in-house deal teams are tiny compared with a bulge-bracket bank's M&A department. So the number of possible openings is limited. Separately, the New York Society of Security Analysts has scheduled a July 15 program on careers in corporate development and strategy.

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Citigroup reportedly is reshaping its bonus system to place greater emphasis on divisional cooperation and overall corporate performance, according to the Financial Times. The newspaper describes the change as a key plank in Chief Executive Vikram Pandit's strategy to revitalize the "universal banking" model by fostering synergies among investment banking, commercial banking and wealth management. Any shift is likely to be unpopular among Citi's work force. Like most investment banks, its current bonus structure reflects group and individual performance far more than overall corporate results.

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Bank of America said its absorption of Countrywide will eliminate 7,500 jobs over two years. The figure reportedly amounts to 12.5 percent of the combined work force. "Most of the reductions will occur in instances where the two companies have significant overlap such as staff support," the bank said. B of A said the layoffs will begin in the third quarter, and will include severance packages.

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Media coverage of sovereign wealth funds often focuses on their controversial investments in troubled American and European banks. Many investment professionals have a different question on their minds: What are the career opportunities?

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Job cuts to date have only scratched the surface of what Wall Street needs to match historical revenue and profit benchmarks, according to an analysis by financial sector research boutique Portales Partners.

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