According to survey respondents, 36% expect a higher bonus this year
NEW YORK, Oct. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Even with the market chaos and
government bailouts, more than two-thirds of Wall Street professionals are
still expecting a bonus this year, and 36% are expecting a bigger bonus
than last year.
These are some of the results of an October survey of U.S. financial
services professionals following the news of the federal bailout and the
initial plunge in the stock market. The survey was conducted by
eFinancialCareers and more than 1,300 employed U.S. financial services
While the survey results would seem to run contrary to the current
economy, chaotic markets, bank failures, and unprecedented government
intervention, the reality is that for many on Wall Street, they will
receive bonuses this year, as even institutions that are suffering will
To be sure, among those expecting bonuses this year, most anticipate
the increase will be 10% or less over last year. But a minority -- 10% --
expect this year's bonus to be at least 33% above last year. Another 31% of
U.S. financial services professionals expect this year's payout to be less
than 2007, while 34% expect no bonus at all.
"While the bonus pool will certainly be down substantially this year,
bonuses will still be paid to those individuals who generated revenue for
their institutions," said John Benson, founder and CEO of
eFinancialCareers.com. "For those who performed, the failure to receive a
bonus may make them receptive to offers from other employers and banks
cannot afford to lose their top performers right now."
Not surprisingly given their role, those holding front office jobs were
the most optimistic, with 71% expecting a 2008 bonus, while in the back
office just over half (56%) expect a payout.
Current State of Mind
The turmoil on Wall Street is reflected in the attitudes of
professionals currently employed. More than two-thirds (68%) of employed
financial services professionals are either open to changing jobs or
actively looking. Another 19% would love to switch jobs, but for now
consider themselves playing it safe by staying put. Only 14% of respondents
indicated that they are very happy and not looking to move.
In fact, not only are they ready to change jobs, the survey results
point to only a lukewarm desire to stay on Wall Street. 71% of respondents
said they would consider a job opportunity outside of financial services.
The positions most often mentioned as desirable: corporate development or
strategy and management consulting.
"While the desire to jump ship may be high, financial services
professionals should give serious consideration to how they will
potentially transfer their skills to other industries," noted Mr. Benson.
"Those who can survive this downturn on Wall Street will be well positioned
as leaders when the cycle turns again."
eFinancialCareers currently lists more than 1,800 jobs nationwide for
financial services professionals and more than 10,000 positions worldwide.
The eFinancialCareers Bonus Survey was administered online October 13 -
October 21, 2008 with more than 1,300 registered U.S. eFinancialCareers
users responding. Registered users had to indicate that they were currently
employed to be included in the survey results. Registered users were
invited to participate in the survey through e-mail.
Table 1: What do you expect to happen to your bonus this year compared
to last year?
51%+ more 7%
33-50% more 3%
11-30% more 6%
0-10% more 20%
1-10% less 7%
11-30% less 8%
31-50% less 7%
51%+ less 8%
I will have no bonus 34%
Table 2: What do you expect to happen to your bonus this year compared
to last year?
Higher 37% 31%
Lower 34% 24%
I will have no bonus 29% 44%
Table 3: Which of the following best describes your current situation
related to job searching, I am...
Unhappy with my job and looking to change as soon
as possible. 21%
Would love to switch jobs, but staying put for now
to play it safe. 19%
My job is fine, but I'd be open to a better
Looking for a job due to concern of being
eliminated in light of market conditions. 14%
Very happy with my job and not looking to move. 14%
Table 4: Would you consider making a career change outside the
financial services industry?
eFinancialCareers, a Dice Holdings, Inc. company, is the leading global
career site network for professionals working in the investment banking,
asset management and securities industries. The website provides financial
services professionals with job opportunities, job market news and
analysis, salary surveys and career advice. Recruiters and employers can
post jobs targeting specific sectors within the financial services
industry, both buy-side and sell-side, and can search the resume database
for highly qualified and specialized professionals. eFinancialCareers has a
network of co-branded career sites with industry-leading trade publications
and offers local websites in 18 markets and five languages primarily across
North America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific.