JPMorgan and Goldman bankers quit for $2m jobs in Europe

Good news for young European bankers who want to go into private equity. Despite the brutal war on Europe’s eastern periphery, private equity activity in the west of the continent is not waning. And one of the best known funds is hiring.

Blackstone decided the time was right for European expansion. Bloomberg reports that the firm is expanding in Paris, Frankfurt and “elsewhere” in Europe. He has already hired 200 new people in London since 2020 and needs a new office to accommodate his expanded workforce. Many of the newcomers, like Calvin Ruska (an analyst at Morgan Stanley in Frankfurt until January 2022) are fresh-faced juniors from analyst and associate programs at investment banks; others, like Constance Dana, a recent Cambridge University graduate, completed Blackstone’s own notoriously competitive graduate program.

As Blackstone grows, it’s not just juniors joining. The vice-presidents also have their heads turned: Tara Morrison, “rising star” VP banker at JPMorgan Cazenove has arrived; just like Catherine Chiurco, former vice-president of JPMorgan Asset Management. In 2019, Blackstone also poached Christopher Weber, executive director of Goldman Sachs’ real estate investment team. Heather Von Zuben, the Goldman Sachs partner who quit this month, is also assimilated.

What makes Blackstone so popular? It probably helps that the average salary is somewhere around $2 million and a lot of that comes in the form of deferred interest, which is subject to a much lower tax rate than direct income. Even if the juniors don’t earn $2m immediately (and they don’t – their pay is more like a London average of £371,000), there’s the promise of it all in the future.

It also helps that Blackstone isn’t an investment bank and, in theory, doesn’t work that hard for people. European COO Farhad Karim says a “combination of factors” attract people, including the fact that Blackstone is busy. “We don’t see activity slowing down yet because of the war in Ukraine. If activity levels stay where they are, private equity mergers and acquisitions could end the year higher than 2021,” says Karim.

Blackstone is hiring in a few areas in particular. Life sciences are real estate are areas of interest in the UK; ESG too.

Separately, we now know how much Matthew Koder and James De Mare earn at Bank of America. The two men, who were promoted to head the investment banking and sales and trading divisions last year, earned $20 million and $18 million respectively for 2021 according to Financial News. It was, however, less than Tom Montag, their former boss, who made a mysterious outing in August while apparently on vacation in Hawaii. Montag earned $22 million for eight months.

Meanwhile…

JPMorgan is hiring 6,000 people in Bengalaru this year. They will work across technology, operations and other functions. (India Time)

Spac investors want to withdraw their money. Hedge funds like Atalaya Capital Management and private equity group Apollo offer “buyout capital,” where they agree to buy shares of the spac from investors who want to exit. These shares are often offered at extremely advantageous conditions for the funds. (FinancialTimes)

“For an oil company, exiting refinery assets in Russia may be as simple as dropping the keys and leaving, but a unilateral exit is not possible for a financial services firm. You cannot unilaterally withdraw from loan commitments and other types of financial claims. There’s someone on the other side and it’s going to make things a lot more complicated.” (Reuters)

EY broke away from its Company of 4,700 people in Russia, which will continue to operate as an independent entity. EY, KPMG and PwC had more than 12,000 employees and partners in Russia. (FinancialTimes)

JPMorgan strengthens the The JPMorgan Liquidity Network, an electronic trading platform for corporate bonds. It comes at a time of growing liquidity pressures in the market. (The exchange)

Sabrina Wilson, the former global co-head of futures, OTC clearing and prime FX brokerage at Citi, is joining crypto custodian Copper as chief operating officer. (Financial News)

It will take 30 years to achieve gender parity at the top of the UK financial industry at the current rate of progress. (Guardian)

Meaning is a much weaker predictor of happiness for the rich than for the poor. (BPS)

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Mary I. Bruner