For the most money in investment banking, start out in NY then move to London

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If money is your main motivation for working in investment banking, then the City of London is still the place to earn the largest package – at least at the senior level. If you’re starting out, though, head to the Big Apple.

New figures from pay benchmarking company Emolument suggest that its best to spend your formative years in New York before switching to London once you move up the ranks. Analyst level roles pay £75k in New York, it says, compared to £55k in London. This difference carries on to associate level – in London, median pay was £95k at this level, compared to £120k in New York.

At VP level, however, as the table below shows, it flips in London’s favour and the City remains the place to be up into the senior ranks.


Emolument surveyed 5,275 front office bankers in these locations to gather the figures. It says that the high figures for London demonstrate that investment banks are still competing for senior staff in the City, and are willing to pay.

These figures may seem less than logical, considering the regulatory intervention over investment banking pay in Europe. However, the looming bonus cap for investment banks in the City has been watered down – it will not include everyone earning over €500k, only those deemed ‘material risk takers’, which means thousands of bankers will escape. Figures released in November by the European Banking Authority show that there were 2,188 UK-based investment bankers earning over €1m – a figure that far outstrips any European country.

Despite the fact that most major investment banks look set to reduce bonuses this year, the eFinancialCareers bonus expectations survey suggested that 58% of City workers were anticipating a bigger bonus in 2013, compared to 42% of respondents in New York.

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