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Top banks to work for and why you may want to think twice about working for some of them

Depending on which employee you ask, JPMorgan Chase is either the best bank to work for on Wall Street, or one of the most demanding. JPMorgan bankers say they work long hours, that the schedule is demanding, and that you have the feeling of never being disconnected from work or the markets. On the positive side, JPMorgan’s bankers also say that there are great people, that the culture is very respectful and inclusive and that JPMorgan is committed to developing junior talent.

That's according an annual survey by that uses a weighted formula reflecting issues banking professionals care most about, such as culture, satisfaction, work/life balance, and compensation, and overall prestige.

The 2013 Vault Banking 50 shows Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and Credit Suisse slipping in the rankings while JP Morgan Chase retained its top spot among 50 Wall Street banks.

Banks are known to have cultural idiosyncrasies. For example, we have long said that Evercore works its people very hard, yet it ranks seventh on the Vault's rankings. Deutsche is known for being a little political which may be why it placed 24th.

According to the Vault, the top ten banks to work for are:

JP Morgan Chase

The Blackstone Group

Goldman Sachs

Houlihan Lokey

Morgan Stanley

Greenhill & Co.

Evercore Partners

Perrella Weinberg Partners

Centerview Partner

Credit Suisse

More interesting, however, is what employees told the Vault about what it’s like to work for each organization.

Goldman Sachs

Goldman Sachs bankers say the work hours are very demanding – there’s a 24/7 commitment. They say the type-A culture can mean you’re with ‘overly-competitive colleagues.’ And they say that pay has been sub-par at Goldman Sachs in recent years.

More positively, Goldman’s bankers say they too are working with talented and driven people of a high calibre, that they work on the most exciting and innovative transactions in the industry and the culture is outstanding and rewards teamwork and collaboration.


Evercore bankers say the hours are very bad because deal flow is so heavy and deal teams are so lean.  Because back office support isn’t very strong. And because it’s disorganized and lacks structure. More positively, Evercore’s bankers say you get a lot of exposure to big deals and a lot of exposure to senior bankers and clients even at a junior level.

Credit Suisse

Credit Suisse’s investment bankers complain that the structure of compensation remains an issue (this is even after Credit Suisse raised the threshold at which bonuses start being deferred last year. You also wouldn’t want to work there because the hours are apparently long and life is apparently stressful.

On the plus side, Credit Suisse bankers also feel that they’re working with outstanding colleagues who are some of the, “smartest, most highly motivated people in the industry.” They also say that Credit Suisse is lean, creating opportunities to “stand out.”


Jefferies bankers divulge that the hours can be long there too. It doesn’t help that some processes are inefficient and IT and infrastructure issues can be frustrating, nor that the firm remains the underdog. On the other hand, Jefferies is apparently full of young, fun, energetic people who take their work seriously, but not themselves.

Deutsche Bank

As has long been rumoured to be the case, Deutsche Bank employees say there “ a lot of politics” there. It’s also, “high pressure” and “very hectic.” More positively, Deutsche is highlighted for being a “pretty diverse” employer, in terms of both race and gender.

AUTHORFred Yager and Sarah Butcher Insider Comment

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