Junior Bankers Paid $100,000 on Wall Street – Here’s Why They Still Quit

A Wall St sign hangs at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) at Wall Street on March 23, 2021 in New York City. - Wall Street stocks were under pressure early ahead of congressional testimony from Federal Reserve Chief Jerome Powell as US Treasury bond yields continued to retreat. (Photo by Angela Weiss / AFP) (Photo by ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)

Wall Street is a reference point for the financial world, and many students dream to work there at one point. However, the reality often does not match their expectations, and some end up disappointed. This was the case of Tashrima Hossain, who was a class president at Stanford University.

Hossain has chosen an entry-level job at J.P. Morgan, where she hoped to stay for two years. Nonetheless, she found the work there to be exploitative, and she ended up quitting after only seven months. Like her, many fresh graduates end up avoiding Wall Street companies after being put to work upwards of 80 hours per week.

Wall Street can seem so attractive at first because salaries can reach even $150,000 for those who have just graduated college. The sum is enormous, especially given the experience level in the work field, but this is merely to attract employees in a highly competitive job market.

“I think the investment banks are watching each other, and they’re also watching other highly competitive industries. They want to make sure that they’re staying on par,” explained Cornell lecturer Drew Pascarella.

However, the money is not enough. Young bankers are often exploited at their jobs, and information is starting to become public. Back in February, a PowerPoint presentation created by young bankers from Goldman Sachs went viral. The PowerPoint showed the results of a survey that analysed workplace conditions. On average, the bankers worked for 98 hours per week and went to sleep at 3 AM. All respondents agreed that their relationships with friends and family were affected, and 77% responded that they had been victims of workplace abuse, while 75% had sought counselling.

With such abusive work conditions, it is no wonder that many young bankers decide to quit despite their salaries. It remains to see whether Wall Street will acknowledge its faults and create a healthy work environment in the future.

Agatha Greer
Agatha is our business/finance specialist. She left her corporate job in Finance after 12 years so she could pursue her dream - that of being a journalist. Besides her job, Agatha is a dedicated mother of two who likes to travel and to spend time with her family.