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25 Best Investment Banks to Work for in 2024

by Vault Careers | January 24, 2024

Today, we're excited to release our 2024 Banking 25, a ranking of the best investment banking firms to work for in North America. The ranking is based on a survey of more than 2,400 banking professionals who were asked to rate their firms in several workplace categories, including compensation, culture, diversity, hours, training, work/life balance, wellness, and more. They were also asked to rate firms other than their own in terms of prestige. The 10 Best Investment Banks to Work for in 2024 Based on Vault’s Annual Banking Survey Are: 1. Centerview Partners 2. Evercore 3. Moelis & Company 4. Lazard 5. Guggenheim Securities 6. Morgan Stanley 7. PJT Partners 8. Perella Weinberg 9. Greenhill 10. Harris Williams No. 1 Centerview, the “Peak of Investment Banking,” Offers “Crazy Pay” In addition to ranking No. 1 in the Banking 25, Centerview ranks No. 1 in an impressive 16 workplace categories: Benefits, Business Outlook, Compensation, Culture, ESG Practices, Firm Leadership, Hiring Process, Hours, Informal Training, Internal Mobility, Promotion Policies, Quality of Work, Relationships with Managers, Satisfaction, Wellness, and Work/Life Balance. The firm also jumps one spot to rank No. 4 in Prestige, with bankers at peer firms calling Centerview “the best all-around bank on the Street,” “the peak of investment banking,” “extremely intelligent and efficient,” and a firm that offers “crazy pay.” Meanwhile, Centerview professionals tell us that the firm has a “phenomenal, supportive, collaborative culture,” and is filled with “top-notch, incredibly smart, interesting, thoughtful people.” In addition, the deal quality and experience you get is nearly unmatched—you “work on the most complex and interesting assignments for the most sophisticated clients in the world.” Add to that “the highest compensation on the Street” and it’s easy to see why Centerview holds onto the No. 1 spot overall in our rankings. No. 2 Evercore Is a “Top Boutique” Filled with “Brainiacs” Evercore ranks No. 2 overall, No. 1 in Formal Training, No. 5 in Prestige, and dominates the Diversity Rankings, taking the top spot in Overall Diversity, Diversity for Women, LGBTQ+ Diversity, and Diversity for Individuals with Disabilities. Peer bankers say Evercore is a “top boutique,” has a “good restructuring practice,” and is filled with “very intelligent” people—or “brainiacs,” as one peer banker calls them. Meanwhile, Evercore insiders tell us that the firm has a “culture of excellence and respect,” and is populated with “high-quality, very intelligent, collaborative, innovative, friendly people.” In addition, the firm offers junior bankers “incredible training,” “lots of early responsibility,” “strong deal flow,” and exposure to “high-quality clients.” No. 3 Moelis, a “Solid Sell-Side Shop,” Will “Make Your Resume Glow” Moelis holds steady this year at No. 3. overall, ranks No. 8 in Prestige, and ranks at or right near the top in several Quality of Life and Diversity categories. Moelis ranks No. 1 in Diversity for Military Veterans, and No. 2 in all of the following categories: Benefits, Firm Leadership, Internal Mobility, Promotion Policies, Quality of Work, Relationships with Managers, Satisfaction, Wellness, and LGBTQ+ Diversity. This year, peer bankers tell us that Moelis is “a prestigious,” “solid sell-side shop” that “will make your resume glow.” Meanwhile, Moelis insiders say the firm has a “dynamic culture filled with extremely smart people who care about you as a person and your career development.” In addition, Moelis offers junior bankers “significant early responsibility,” exposure to “great deal flow,” and the ability to work on “a lot of interesting and challenging transactions.” Loop Capital, “the Largest Minority-Owned Investment Bank in the U.S,” Ranks No. 1 in Racial & Ethnic Diversity and No. 2 in Diversity for Women Chicago-based Loop Capital, which ranks No. 14 overall this year, ranks No. 1 in Racial and Ethnic Diversity, No. 2 in Diversity for Women, No. 2 in Diversity for Individuals with Disabilities, and No. 3 in LBGTQ+ Diversity. According to Loop Capital insiders, “Diversity is at the heart of our culture,” and “Loop is the most diverse firm I’ve ever known.” Loop Capital insiders also say that “it’s the largest minority-owned investment bank in the U.S.,” and “we practice what we preach by recruiting talent from a decent amount of non-target schools.” Harris Williams, Lazard, William Blair, and Goldman Sachs Also Earn No. 1s In other wins in our Quality of Life Rankings, Richmond-based Harris Williams ranks No. 1 in Client Interaction, New York-based Lazard ranks No. 1 in International Opportunities, and Chicago-based William Blair ranks No. 1 in Vacation Policies. Harris Williams insiders say that one of the best aspects about working for the firm is the “early access to senior bankers and clients.” Meanwhile, at Lazard, “international mobility is encouraged,” and you receive “strong exposure to international teams and projects.” And at William Blair, “Vacation is highly encouraged, and people are required to take 100 percent of their vacation days.” In our Prestige Rankings, Goldman Sachs again ranks No. 1, with peer bankers saying that the firm “still commands prestige,” is “the best of the bulge brackets,” and is “where you go to build your resume.” Bankers’ Satisfaction with Their Compensation Falls After a Sharp Rise Last Year This year, Satisfaction with Compensation fell by 4 percent, after rising by 6 percent last year. In addition, Satisfaction with Benefits fell by 3 percent, after rising 5 percent last year. These results perhaps underscore the difficult deal markets Wall Street firms faced in 2023—global M&A deal volume dropped by 17 percent to $2.9 trillion, its lowest value since 2013. On the plus side, over the five-year period from 2019 through 2023, Satisfaction with Compensation increased by 1.4 percent. Meanwhile, over the same period, Satisfaction with Benefits increased 3.5 percent. Our new banking company profiles include direct quotes from banking professionals about hours, work/life balance, overall satisfaction, compensation, benefits, training, wellness, diversity, business outlook, and more. View the entire Banking 25 Rankings, Prestige Rankings, Quality of Life Rankings, and Diversity Rankings.

5 Keys to Success That an IB Analyst and Associate Learned Together

by Vault-Firsthand | June 21, 2023

Susie Choi and Sam Johnson have worked together on many deals out of Harris Williams’ San Francisco office. Here, they share advice they’ve learned together.

4 Simple Money Management Tips for Students

by Vibhu Sinha | November 30, 2021

With inflation on the rise, here are four money management tips that don’t require a significant time commitment or specialized knowledge of finance.

A Day in the Life: Portfolio Company Manager

by Vault Careers | June 15, 2021

As a portfolio company manager, here is a typical day at my job.

A Day in the Life: Investment Banking Senior Associate

by Vault Careers | May 15, 2021

As an investment banking senior associate, here is a typical day at my job.

A Day in the Life: Investment Research Associate

by Vault Careers | May 15, 2021

As an investment research associate, here is a typical day at my job.

A Day in the Life: Investment Banking Sales

by Vault Careers | May 15, 2021

As a person who works in investment banking sales, here is a typical day at my job.

A Day in the Life: Tax Trainee

by Nikita Ruia | May 15, 2021

As a tax trainee, here is a typical day at my job.

A Day in the Life: Hedge Funds Investor Relations

by Vault Careers | April 15, 2021

As a hedge funds investor relations, here is a typical day at my job.

A Day in the Life: The Entry-Level Private Equity Employee

by Vault Careers | April 01, 2021

As an entry-level private equity employee, here is a typical day at my job.