Jefferies May Slow Hiring, But It's Still Looking for Key People

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So, a few weeks after Jefferies Group Chairman and CEO Rich Handler said the firm might slow its hiring, two high-profile investment bankers are joining the company.

Maybe Handler meant junior-level hiring? Or maybe if you're a trader looking to jump ship, you want to look elsewhere. The big bucks at Jefferies are in the pockets of M&A bankers.

Joining Jefferies are Doug Wendell (confirmed by Jefferies) and David Mastrangelo (reportedly, for now), both from Citi. They'll be managing directors in Jefferies' global technology group.

During Jefferies' third-quarter conference call, Handler said that though hiring might slow, "We are constantly balancing the need to have short-term results with the mentality of long-term value creation," then added, "A lot of the stars have to align to actually get some of the talented people into Jefferies. Timing is not dependent on when the market is hot or not."

Jefferies ended its fiscal third quarter with a total of 2,971 employees, a net increase of 150 from the previous period. Brian Friedman, president of Jefferies Capital Partners, said the increase "reflects the continued rounding out of our global sales and trading platform," as well as growth in the investment bank.

Investment banking is where the firm's bread is buttered. More than 47 percent of

Jefferies' $520 million in third quarter revenue was generated by investment banking services. M&A and advisory revenues contributed $149 million to that amount, triple from a year earlier.

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