Between the current debt deal and its negative impact on growth and underwhelming second quarter earnings, the financial sector's job market is taking quite a hit, as evidenced by massive layoffs among the world's largest investment banks.
For recent MBA grads, job prospects appear to be shrinking daily. But for foreign-born students in need of H1-B visa sponsorship, finding a job in the financial markets can be particularly daunting.
It's been a couple of difficult years for those hailing from outside the U.S. H1-B visas numbers set by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services have remained flat for quite some time, set at 65,000 annually.
According to Wendy Tsung, associate dean and executive director of MBA Career Services for Emory University's Goizueta Business School, foreign students looking for placement with financial services companies stateside have found the jobs in finance few and far between.
Firms are less likely to sponsor someone when they're unsure they will be able to stay," Tsung told eFinancialCareers. "The price of the visa isn't overly burdensome, but the training costs and the cost of getting someone up and running in a position is a big factor."
So, what are foreign-born MBA graduates doing when they can't locate a desired financial services post in the U.S.?
Tsung says many of these students are returning home to work. She does see one exception, however. "The offers are constrained, but for the right people, there are still offers." U.S. employers are looking for very specific skill sets, she notes, and those who are experienced in their respective field-people who need little to no training-will get the benefit.
One of those skill sets involves quantative analysis, or quants.
Deborah Rivera of the New York based executive recruiting firm, The Succession Group, says, "it's becoming rare to find American students who qualify for quant roles. So we are forced to do international recruiting or we recruit through universities from math and physics majors and very few of them are Americans."