Best and worst paying jobs in Finance

In its latest study, Emolument.com analysed 4,000 salaries from senior finance professionals (directors) working in London, to find which are the highest and lowest paying jobs. Results show that investment banks are still home to most of the City's best paying jobs, while rating agencies and research firms cannot compete with asset managers nor banks when it comes to pay.

Salary and bonus by job

Rank Industry Job Salary Bonus Total
1 Bank M&A 168,000 140,000 308,000
2 Bank Trading 175,000 120,000 295,000
3 Bank Institutional Sales 175,000 113,000 288,000
4 Bank Structuring 164,000 105,000 269,000
5 Bank Origination & Syndication 162,000 103,000 265,000
6 Bank Company Research 160,000 95,000 255,000
7 Bank Corporate Broker  130,000 125,000 255,000
8 Bank Quantitative Research  155,000 98,000 253,000
9 Bank Sales Trading 160,000 85,000 245,000
10 Bank Quantitative Structurer  148,000 95,000 243,000
11 Bank Research Generalist  158,000 84,000 242,000
12 Buy side VC Investment 140,000 102,000 242,000
13 Buy side Trading 125,000 115,000 240,000
14 Bank Execution  155,000 82,000 237,000
15 Bank Broker  175,000 55,000 230,000
16 Bank Prime Brokerage Sales  170,000 55,000 225,000
17 Buy side Fund & Portfolio Managers 124,000 90,000 214,000
18 Bank Product Strategy  168,000 45,000 213,000
19 Buy side Asset Gathering/Fundraising  118,000 90,000 208,000
20 Bank Economist  155,000 50,000 205,000
21 Bank Project Finance & PFI  138,000 55,000 193,000
22 Buy side Company Research  120,000 70,000 190,000
23 Bank Product Developement / Management  150,000 30,000 180,000
24 Bank Corporate Banking 128,000 50,000 178,000
25 Buy side Deal Execution  86,000 90,000 176,000
26 Buy side Relationship Management  115,000 60,000 175,000
27 Buy side Product Specialist  110,000 65,000 175,000
28 Rating agency Data Vendor  115,000 58,000 173,000
29 Bank Custody  138,000 33,000 171,000
30 Bank Asset Liability & Management Sales  125,000 44,000 169,000
31 Bank Coverage / Relationship Management 125,000 42,000 167,000
32 Buy side Product Development & Marketing  107,000 49,000 156,000
33 Bank Risk & Actuary 125,000 30,000 155,000
34 Bank Trade Finance  133,000 19,000 152,000
35 Buy side Institutional Sales 109,000 43,000 152,000
36 Bank Asset Finance / Leasing  115,000 36,000 151,000
37 Buy side Risk & Actuary  118,000 24,000 142,000
38 Rating agency Rating Analysis  111,000 28,000 139,000
39 Rating agency Research / Economist  110,000 24,000 134,000
40 Bank Middle & Back Office 102,000 26,000 128,000
41 Buy side Middle & Back Office 92,000 20,000 112,000


Banking is still the place to be: Despite regulatory constraints on bonuses following the 2008 financial crisis, bankers still earn more than those working for asset management firms or rating agencies, with median pay packages of 308,000 for Mergers & Acquisitions professionals.


Is the bonus era definitely over? Bonuses used to represent the bigger part of a banker's annual compensation packages. Over the last ten years, base salaries have progressively increased partly to allow for larger bonus payments (which should rarely exceed 100% of base salary). In line with regulation, bonuses are now lower than base salaries.


Is there money outside banking ? Away from banking, the most profitable jobs are VC investors (242,000 per year) or a buy-side trader (240,000).


Poor, poor back office: In both of the asset management and banking industries, back office directors trail far behind front office professionals at 128,000 at investment banks and 112,000 at asset management firms, i.e, less than half the amount earned by M&A bankers(308,000).


Same industry but vastly different revenue - and pay - models: Two of the five lowest paying jobs in finance are at rating agencies. And the highest paying one (data vendor) only ranks 28 out of 41 overall.


A matter of perspective? The lowest paid professionals (middle & back office working for buy side firms) earn 112,000, which still places them among the UK 's top 2% earners1


Alice Leguay, Co-Founder & CMO at Emolument.com said: 'While base salaries have increased in the last few years, regulation has squeezed banking bonuses. Meanwhile, buy-side firms, especially those not subject to pay regulations such as hedge funds and VC firms have been looking increasingly attractive for bankers looking to retain top paying positions in the industry.'


1- https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/percentile-points-from-1-to-99-for-total-income-before-and-after-tax#history

 

Emolument provides bonus and salary statistics based on data submitted directly by professionals like you. It is free, anonymous, and already a trusted tool for thousands of professionals worldwide. Are you paid enough? Click here to find out now.


Are you an employer?

Hire and retain the best talent with accurate and reliable data

Benchmark Your Teams

 


Know what you're worth

Compare your compensation with peers in your industry

 





Back to Top