Investment bankers assist corporations and government entities obtain capital financing, normally through debt raising or equity. They help their clients raise money in markets, assist with mergers and acquisitions, and help their clients raise money in capital markets.
As a result of this, when capital markets are thriving, the investment banking sector tends to benefit since they generate revenue from all the work they undertake.
As a graduate in the investment banking sector, your role will start out naturally at a junior level. You will assist in developing financial models, documents and presentations for your clients. You will generally work as part of a team which is assigned to assist these clients, and depending on the size of either the project or the bank, you may specialise in an industry sector. This is more common amongst the big investment banks like Macquarie, UBS and Goldman Sachs.
As investment bankers progress throughout their career, the role morphs away from project orientated tasks and revolves mainly around relationship building. You will be involved in acquiring new relationships, selling to these clients and managing the relationship over time.
Whilst investment bankers are mainly employed by investment banks, there are synergies in both the consulting and accounting sectors, as they have teams dedicated to offering professional advice to companies on investment opportunities, fundraising and mergers, and acquisitions.
Investment bankers have an incredible opportunity to work with a range of government departments and companies in different industries and provide the framework to support strategic decisions. This means that you will have the chance to meet some of the most successful business people, not just in New Zealand, but globally, and develop truly valuable allies which can assist your career.
Salaries are also above the national average and there are generally chances to work overseas. You will have a crystal clear career path outlined from day one, and the banks and firms generally have a positive approach to developing you and other junior investment bankers.
However, the tasks initially provided to graduates can be mundane and long hours are an expectation of the role. In your first years as an investment banker, you will be tasked with updating spreadsheets, preparing and updating documents for presentations.
Generally, applications for the graduate programmes at the large banks normally close in March or April each year. However, many of the positions are filled by students who have already completed an internship at the investment bank. Investment banks normally open up applications for their internship programmes in July and close in August. Students will then complete the internship over the summer period, normally spanning across three months between November to February.
As salaries are high in this sector, there is a lot of competition for these positions. Its best to start doing your research on firms early, get an understanding to the type of work you would be doing on the job, and then when applications open, you have a broad understanding of the market and which firms are more suited to what you’re looking for.
The average salary for an investment banker in New Zealand is NZ$77,419 per year. However, depending on bonuses, this can easily extend to six-figure sums within your first couple of year. Bonuses are normally tied to the results the bank or firm have achieved for the financial year, however, this fluctuates between firms.
The skills you will develop as an investment banker is in high demand, with growth predicted in this sector. Your career is impacted by global markets, with there being less activity in the sector when there is a financial downturn, which results in reduced job opportunities and bonuses.
And it would be remiss for us not to advise to keep a close eye on the GradNewZealand job board for all the latest investment banking graduate jobs available.