The field is hypercompetitive. The hours are brutal. Stability and security are a pipe dream.
Doesn’t exactly sound like the perfect job, does it? Yet while the downsides of a career on Wall Street are obvious to even the most starry-eyed dreamer, the potential payoff is like none other.
Sure, the first few years may involve 80 or 90-hourwork weeks, unbelievably demanding bosses and unrelenting pressure. Survive that crucible, however, and you’ll ikely reap considerable financial rewards. You’ll also experience the thrill of working in the epicenter of world finance — while having the chance to measure yourself against the very best
There’s more good news — now is a great time to start a career on Wall Street.
Let’s examine a few reasons why.
The rise of tech industry
The tech sector may not sound like it has much to do with a Wall Street career. The two are becoming more intertwined, however — and that can work to your advantage. Technology firms are fiercely competing with finance firms for the same pool of talent — and lately they’ve been winning. Major players such as Apple, Google and Facebook can dangle huge compensation packages along with the idealistic challenge of changing the world for the better.
Wall Street is fighting back the best way it can — with lots of money. Large firms have been increasing compensation packages in order to recruit and retain new talent.
Given the fact that salaries and bonuses dropped significantly in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, this new competition between tech titans and the key players on Wall Street is a major boon for those seeking a career. It’s also helped create more job opportunities in finance, as sought-after graduates and young workers shift into new careers in tech.
The growth of the U.S. economy
While Main Street has yet to fully recover from 2008’s financial crisis, Wall Street is another story entirely. We are now in the middle of an historic, six-year bull market. The U.S. dollar is stronger than it has been in years. Mergers and acquisitions have picked up significantly in the last year.
In short, the economic picture appears fairly promising. That’s not to say future growth is a foregone conclusion. The stunning drop in oil prices since August of 2014 has created uncertainty, as has the likelihood of increased interest rates.
The U.S. Federal Reserve has sent strong signals such a move could come soon. Despite these developments, the overall economic climate is encouraging — which means this is an excellent time for new workers to enter the industry.
Wall Street compensation is back
Though the financial services sector has always had a well-deserved reputation for high compensation packages, the financial crisis of 2008 put a serious damper on things. If you’re looking to get into the business today, however, there’s good news — the days of reduced salaries and bonuses are over.
Last year Wall Street bonuses reached their highest levels since 2008, jumping 15-percent over the previous year. Job numbers in the financial industry have also improved after taking a serious post-crash hit.
Along with peerless bonuses and salary, Wall Street jobs offer something even more valuable — a turbocharged career boost. The right starting position allows you future access to elite hedge funds, private equity firms, business schools and banks.
There’s a reason why huge numbers of Ivy League students head to Wall Street every year post-graduation. Increased competition for talent, an improving economy and the lure of amassing significant wealth make Wall Street more attractive today than it has been for years.