Friday’s headlines: Goldman does away with its pressure-cooker culture to lure top hires

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Who are these people? This week Goldman announced it is shaking up its prestigious pressure-cooker culture, known for decades for 100-hour workweeks and early cash-ins – and being the most elite of Wall Street. Now, as the Wall Street Journal reports the bank is killing its 25-year old program which grants coveted two-year analyst contracts to graduating college seniors.

“The shift gives Goldman more flexibility in shaping its lower ranks—at a moment when those lower ranks are reshaping the industry,” the Journal writes.

Until this year, a regimented program was in place: a group of recent Goldman interns were offered two-year analyst programs which required grueling workweeks and meetings with all the right people at the firm. Then, after finishing MBAs, many would return to the bank. “Receiving one of those two-year offers was an ambitious person’s official acknowledgement that she was in the game,” Wall Street Journal writes.

This month, the packages do not come with a time guarantee, and new conditions on bonuses. The bank has always taken liberty to fire under-performing analysts. This new program is aimed at luring top performers away from hedge funds, private equity and venture capital, which offer higher pay for less work.

However, our UK Editor Sarah Butcher has a different interpretation of what all this means, which you'll see in a story we'll run later.

Other news:

Former BofA exec Sallie Krawcheck discussed her concerns about the complexity of financial behemoths at a conference. DealBook
Banks buoyed by commercial and industrial loans. WSJ
A former MSSB exec says he was fired for whistleblowing. Investment News
Description: aggregator HighTower will offer two new paths for financial advisers to make the transition to independence.  Investment News
Abrams Capital Management raised $2.9B in a new fund.   Boston Globe
Secondary buyouts drive a deal boom.  WSJ
Yale chief investment officer David Swensen was diagnosed with cancer.  Yale Daily News