Handy homes for disaffected bankers

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Some places plan to capitalize on the fact that the average bonus wasn't up another 30% this year. Peeved about your payout? Read on.

St. James's Place

At some point in the depths of the Christmas and New Year period, the Financial Times ran an article saying that St. James's Place, 'the wealth manager that counts executives and Premiership footballers among its clients', has opened an academy to convert disillusioned investment bankers into wealth managers.

Adrian Batchelor, sales director for the company, confirms that this is indeed the case and that 15 to 20 banking émigrés are sought by the end of Feb: "The whole idea of the academy is to give people training who haven't had experience in wealth management before. They could be anything from fund managers to equity salespeople."

Everyone applying can expect to go through a rigorous application process (including psychometric tests and an assessment centre), at the end of which successful applicants will be invited to attend the 20-week training programme in London.

Be warned, however, that even a paltry bonus is likely to do little to prepare you for becoming a student again - pay during the training programme is 2k a month.

If you make the grade however, and go on to become a 'partner' (AKA self-employed financial advisor), you won't starve - the average St. James's Place partner makes 100k, and gets to work out of the spare room.

"We know there are a number of people who are fed up with the lifestyle of the City," says Batchelor. "At St. James's place you will ultimately be running your own business."

Shore Capital

The UK investment banking group is also looking to rise on a tide of peeved economic migrants from the City.

Director Rupert Armitage says the company grew from around 40 people to 110 in 2007 and aspires to expand further in 2008. "In terms of sales, people with contacts at hedge funds or institutional fund management houses are always welcome," he says.

And while Armitage says Shore Capital "isn't a Goldman Sachs", pay is apparently "competitive" with the market.

Ernst & Young

The FT's Alphaville blog reports that Ernst & Young made a lot more partners this year than at any time in the recent past, with some of them even hired in from outside. A spokeswoman for the company says the company will be looking to hire investment bankers from areas like M&A to swell its ranks in 2008.

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