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Morning Coffee: Junior banker's dismay as 27-year-old receives $70m for 2 years. Credit Suisse due for massive cuts in style of UBS in 2012

If you went into banking for the money, you may have made a mistake. You could have made more (particularly this year), playing video games instead.

This is the sorry realization that has struck the millennial bankers and others hanging out on Wall Street Oasis, lamenting the grind of their banking jobs. Noting that Félix Lengyel, a 27-year-old Canadian-Hungarian internet personality-cum-person who plays games while people watch, has received a two $70m contract, plus bonuses that could hike the total to $100m, they have been lamenting their path. 

"You: Worked your ass off to get into Ivy League and best internships; worked your ass off to get into top IB/PE;  worked your ass off grinding 80+ hours/week in your 20s for a CHANCE at $1m+, losing your soul along the way; have shitty bosses and unlikable competitive peers who constantly judge you on "mUh PrEsTiGe"," observes one Wall Street Oasis user claiming to be a first year analyst. "Him: Dropped out of high school; plays video games and watches TikTok videos; gets a $100m contract; millions of fans and industry thought leader (online entertainment)."

Lengyel's success, which is based on his charismatic personality and nearly 12 million followers, comes after a four-year streaming career on Twitch, where he played games like Overwatch and League of Legends and was the site's most watched person. His large payday is the result of being poached by rival streaming platform Kick. Similar things happen in banking, but only when you're a top trader at somewhere like Goldman Sachs and are being feted by top hedge funds like Millennium. If Lengyel were in banking, he'd be a junior VP on circa $500k at most. 

The reassuringly self-evident news for anyone questioning their banking career is that Lengyel is clearly an outlier. Average monthly pay for Twitch streamers is typically less than $1k a month. Pay on Twitch reflects average viewers. To make $500k a year, you'd need over 13,000 committed viewers of your stream each month. That requires a combination of hard work and an ability to be consistently entertaining for hours on end. The former may be easier than the latter. 

Separately, Sergio Ermotti says he's reenacting UBS in 2012 at Credit Suisse in 2023. Speaking to a Swiss paper, the UBS CEO said Credit Suisse may see some "massive downsizing" and pointed out that UBS underwent something similar when he first arrived over a decade ago.

Anyone who recalls that time at UBS may now feel slightly apprehensive: the bank made 10,000 job cuts, and in London traders were forced to reconvene in pubs after discovering their door passes no longer worked. 

Meanwhile... 

Soeren Kuenzel, a 31-year-old German ex-competitive gymnast, runs Citadel Securities' FX team. He got the job after winning a data competition at university and now hangs out in Miami, where he can also be found kite surfing. (Business Insider) 

Hedge fund Marshall Wace is charging investors in its $22.5bn Eureka hedge a “compensation surcharge” of 0.75% so that it can compete with multistrategy firms and pay its staff. (Bloomberg) 

Barclays' FX trader Akshay Niranjan had a terrible day. He lost his entire book in a single day and broke up with his fiancee. Then a trading team from his friend made him $30k. At the time, that seemed great. In fact, it's landed him with an insider trading accusation. (Bloomberg) 

Barclays hired Yuri Shakhmin from Credit Suisse in EMEA for its industrials team, plus Christopher Ludwig from Credit Suisse in New York for shareholder advisory. (Financial News) 

Deutsche Bank hired Nora Yeung from Credit Suisse as head of APAC ECM. (Bloomberg) 

Peel Hunt made a loss of £1.5m after warnings the UK is experiencing “extraordinary” market turmoil. (CityAm) 

Citi really wants its investment bank to be top in Europe. “We couldn’t wake up in the morning if we thought we couldn’t be number one.” It's given junior bankers more responsibility and liberated senior bankers to spend more time with clients. (Financial News)

Peter Johnson, a former Barclays trader who went to prison for fixing LIBOR was the whistleblower who originally tried to alert the authorities about what was going on.  "In my most optimistic view, I would like my guilty plea to be revoked. I'd like to basically have my reputation restored. And I'd like senior people to be held accountable." (BBC) 

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor
  • In
    Insider
    20 June 2023

    Are you comparing an average entry level investment bank analyst, to Citadel's (which is the world's largest hedge fund) Head of FX? What kind of BS is this?

  • Gl
    Glinwet
    19 June 2023

    "Him: stopped studying/doing any homework; plays basketball six hours a day, travels to other cities and is recruited by billion dollar basketball colleges while other kids DoorDash and slave over literature tests; gets a $100m NBA contract; millions of fans and industry thought leader (broadcast entertainment)."

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