Improved Ways To Estimate Investment Banking Analyst Bonuses

March 28, 2014


Do you know which is the most talked about aspect of Investment Banking Analyst Bonuses

How Investment Banking Analyst Bonuses is calculated?

The compensation of an analyst is structured as a salary plus year-end bonus. Also for new employees it includes a signing bonus. Bonus is decided on the basis of one’s own performance and the entire team’s performance. That is though everybody is putting their entire effort but, is unsuccessful in closing the deals then it is definitely going to affect the revenue.  In such cases, employee bonuses will suffer.

 bonusBasis or the procedure through which Investment banking Analyst bonuses are calculated

1. Group heads are given with the responsibility of dividing their juniors in the tiers. Based on the reviews and the feedback’s from the people who have worked with you, you will be filtered.

2. The higher management then decides about the, bonus amount to be allocated.

3. Also for those who are at senior positions, the amounts differ based upon the deals that became successful. Whoever you are, your own contribution and performance in work is counted.

4. As per this the MDs discuss internally about the ranking of each analyst.

There are few drivers which can be the deciding factors in the process of bonus.

  • Turnover

This is very important factor as without achieving higher turnover, investment bank is not going to pay you bonus. Though Finance is all about profit it revolves around the market conditions.

  • Performance

Analysts are awarded bonus based upon their 12 months performance. So they are expected to be good at work throughout the year.

How one should be prepared for getting appropriate Bonus?

  • Start and the end are the indicators.

Your work for the entire year is important but the beginning and the ending month performance plays vital role. So as an analyst you should be very careful regarding your performance.

  • Do your work smartly.

It’s okay, if you make mistake but learn from that mistake, and never repeat such mistake again.

  • Attend all the meetings and do your work effectively.

You should not be concerned with the figure of bonus as what you should focus on is the quality work that you are doing.

 Why low or no bonus?

1.    Banks may be changing their compensation as a percentage of Net Revenue Targets.

Banks are providing compensation as a % of net revenue targets. In past years if banks had awarded 50% or more of net revenue to the employees, but now for boosting Return On Equity banks have reduced these percentages to 40%.

2.    Uncertainty over Government policies

As there exists uncertainty in terms of market movements and deal activities, banks have to be prepared accordingly.

3.    Adverse Economic healthAdverse Economic health

Uncertain or weak economy, slowdown in markets can be the reason that banks may show least interest in increasing the bonus of the employees.

General Bonus figures

ANALYSTFor the Investment Banking analysts in the first year, generally receives $10 k or so as a signing bonus with base salary of $60K-$70K. The first year Investment Banking Associates out of an MBA program will receive a $30k signing bonus and $95-105k salary depending on the bank. Along with bonus you also get other perks for your dinner and other facilities for the cases when you have to work in the night as well.

Here you can have a look over the compensation figures:


Base Salary BONUS Total Compensation
Below Average Average Above Average
1st Year Analyst $70 k $30k-$40k $45k-$60k $50k-$80k $100k-$150k
2ndt Year Analyst $80K $30k-$50k $55k-$75k $65k-$85k $110k-$165k
3rd Year Analyst $90k $35k-$60k $65k-$80k $90k-$120k $125k-$210k


AssociateAssociate Pay

The figure below is an aggregation of approximate Associate compensation figures for bulge bracket investment banks. The numbers shown represent averages over the past several years and bonuses across tiers.

Base Salary Bonus Range Total Compensation
1st Year Associate $110K-$125K $60K-$135K $170K-$260K
2nd Year Associate $120K-$135K $80K-$160K $200K-$295K
3rd Year Associate $130K-$160K $90K-190K $220K-$350K

As a generalization, there has been a trend over the past several years whereby Associate bonuses have been shrinking while base salary has increased.

Senior pay

Senior Bankers

Senior bankers interact with clients on a daily basis and they are actually related to sourcing and closing the deals hence they have the control over the money that banks makes. Hence in top to bottom hierarchical approach, Bonuses forms the major part of the compensation as it is directly related with the performance for the deal closing. These bankers’ works on sell side of the deal and hence, the commission and huge experience are the keys to the big salaries.

Vice President (or Director) PayVice President

The basic salary range for a Vice President is somewhere around $170K-$200K. as per the position holding and experience of a VP it goes up. If we see the whole salary with the bonus amount it ranges from $240K-$750K. Senior Vice President

Senior Vice President (or Executive Director) Pay

Senior Vice President’ salary ranges around $290K to $1.30 million.

Managing Director Pay

The general figure for Managing Director’s pay including bonusManaging Director ranges from the $700K to $3 million.  However, the Managing directors who close the highly profitable transactions can make even more than this.

The figures shown are generalized figures. However Real figures  may vary as per the geography, experience and organizational level.

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    Rajesh Kumar

    Enquiry regarding equity research and investment banking online course details.