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IB in the US - how many days off per year on average?

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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2010, 00:08
Very interesting thread to go through, and many interesting facts & opinions in there indeed. I have worked in Europe through the "crisis period" for an american bank. And have thought several times about shifting to NY, after all we are an american bank, so it should be easy enough. But always the one thing that stops me is the vacation policy. Here I get 5 weeks a year off, and everyone is encouraged to take it. There is just about no one in the team that leaves un-used vacations at the end of the year and it is perfectly acceptable to decide out of the blue to take a week off and go driving on the auto-bahn ... which is a bit I really love. In the US however, firstly the vacation policy is tiered and linked to your seniority, you don't get enough vacation allocation anyway and the worst bit is that at less than 5 years of experience level, you seldom get to use all of your vacation anyway.

I just refuse to live life like that. What is the point of all the money, if you have no time to travel and spend it I say ! Though I do believe it is this stringent vacation policy that makes all the people in NY assume all the days before 3-day weekends are half-days when they really aren't (this is something so irritating when you are in London, feels almost as if the NY guys are dying to take time off and at any excuse would just take a half day and run) ... Pre-bank weekend working days in London are not half-days ... so if thats something which you like, NY might be the place :d
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2010, 05:15
shrouded1 wrote:
Though I do believe it is this stringent vacation policy that makes all the people in NY assume all the days before 3-day weekends are half-days when they really aren't (this is something so irritating when you are in London, feels almost as if the NY guys are dying to take time off and at any excuse would just take a half day and run) ... Pre-bank weekend working days in London are not half-days ... so if thats something which you like, NY might be the place :d


Given there are 8 bank holidays a year in England, you could just use a whole four days of your holiday allowance and do the same.

As for less vacation, it becomes pretty normal. I have a pretty flexible schedule, but I really am not that keen on taking huge amounts of vacation. I always used to struggle with using them when I was in the UK.
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2010, 14:02
3underscore wrote:
shrouded1 wrote:
Though I do believe it is this stringent vacation policy that makes all the people in NY assume all the days before 3-day weekends are half-days when they really aren't (this is something so irritating when you are in London, feels almost as if the NY guys are dying to take time off and at any excuse would just take a half day and run) ... Pre-bank weekend working days in London are not half-days ... so if thats something which you like, NY might be the place :d


Given there are 8 bank holidays a year in England, you could just use a whole four days of your holiday allowance and do the same.

As for less vacation, it becomes pretty normal. I have a pretty flexible schedule, but I really am not that keen on taking huge amounts of vacation. I always used to struggle with using them when I was in the UK.


There is 3 bank holidays (long weekends), the rest is stuff like christmas, new years .. I am not sure that adds up to 8 actually. As an expat, vacation is very important for me. I would typically spend atleast 2 weeks a year back home, atleast a week in NY for shopping and then I need time to visit mainland Europe as well :d ... I just think its a lifestyle that works for me and for many others I know as well. To each his own !
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 14 Oct 2010, 17:28
shrouded1 wrote:
Very interesting thread to go through, and many interesting facts & opinions in there indeed. I have worked in Europe through the "crisis period" for an american bank. And have thought several times about shifting to NY, after all we are an american bank, so it should be easy enough. But always the one thing that stops me is the vacation policy. Here I get 5 weeks a year off, and everyone is encouraged to take it. There is just about no one in the team that leaves un-used vacations at the end of the year and it is perfectly acceptable to decide out of the blue to take a week off and go driving on the auto-bahn ... which is a bit I really love. In the US however, firstly the vacation policy is tiered and linked to your seniority, you don't get enough vacation allocation anyway and the worst bit is that at less than 5 years of experience level, you seldom get to use all of your vacation anyway.

I just refuse to live life like that. What is the point of all the money, if you have no time to travel and spend it I say ! Though I do believe it is this stringent vacation policy that makes all the people in NY assume all the days before 3-day weekends are half-days when they really aren't (this is something so irritating when you are in London, feels almost as if the NY guys are dying to take time off and at any excuse would just take a half day and run) ... Pre-bank weekend working days in London are not half-days ... so if thats something which you like, NY might be the place :d


Great post shrouded1 ! I thought that the London IB scene was like that of NY.

I agree with you, I do not see any sense of making a lot of money and live like that. The work is to make money, not to be enjoyed like your family, friends, or speeding in the Autobahn :P What's the point of owning a Ferrari and driving around NY ?! Just to get attention ? I would rather take some good 10-20 days, drive around the beautiful Europe and stop on Nurburgring to really enjoy life ! :P
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 15 Oct 2010, 01:13
Coincidentally some folks I know in NY do own a Ferrari or a lambourghini ... And from my understanding, driving those around manhattan = not fun.



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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 20 Apr 2011, 07:21
At a recent ASW I sat next to a former banker for information sessions on Finance. One of the graduating students talked about his internship experience and how he stayed in the office until 4am and was back in by 9:30. I was assured by my new friend that the panelist was exaggerating - and I kind of suspected he had to be.

We hear regularly about 100 hour weeks, but it's nearly impossible to work that much in a week - or at least on a regular basis. There are only 168 hours in a week! Let's say you average 4 hours of sleep - can't believe that could be sustainable, but w/e. There are now 140 hours in the week. With travel time to and from the office, say 133 hours left. Like pelihu mentioned earlier, I think it's far more reasonable to expect 80 hours. I think people inflate how much they work. I know when I was a design engineer, my 55 hour weeks were rounded up to 60 and 60 hour weeks were described as 70 :-)

Also, what makes banking so appealing is the money. In the defense industry, if you want to be promoted you'll be expected to work 80 hours a week to earn about $150k with a chance at a 15% bonus. You're mostly working on some mind numbing proposals, trying to mix teams to meet a 10% profit target and make the execs happy. This is coming first hand from my boss - noMBA, pushing 40, very career oriented. When you compare this to the prospect of earning an MBA and doing some exciting work while being well compensated when you are 30, it's no wonder why people choose to become I-Bankers - even if only for a few years.
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 12 Jun 2011, 06:55
devidjoli wrote:
You may have 10 weeks off, but no one likes it when you take that time off consecutively. I have never been away for more than 2-weeks in the near decade I've been working.............


Sorry my friend, you don't know what is good in life :-D . One time I got 37 days off straight and was the best thing I've ever done in my life. I backpacked throughout Europe, from France to Croacia, from Sweden to Italy, an experience that I learned a lot about other cultures and about life. This is the kind of experience that is impossible to do with only one to two weeks.

Even if your are married, you can have an amazing experience with your wife. For example, staying 30 days in Tuscany, living in an amazing vineyard while taking Italian classes everyday is unbelievable.

When I graduate from BSchool, I will take at least 30 days off before staring working to do a backpack again, this time through Scadinavia... :wink:
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 09 Sep 2011, 17:09
great information Pelihu! thank you for sharing your insight!!!!
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 06 Jan 2013, 23:15
Expert's post
Old thread but feeling it is worth a gentle bump :)
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 07 Jan 2013, 17:04
I think "investment banking" and "days off" should never appear in the same sentence :lol: If you are concerned about off time, an industry known for its brutal 100-hour work weeks may not be for you.
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 10 Jan 2013, 15:50
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Completely agree with the previous poster's sentiment -- management consulting is a heavy schedule (I was a partner in a couple of the major firms earlier in my career); investment banking is an absolutely crushing schedule.

If you're thinking hard about vacations you need to either choose your firms very carefully and/or think about a different career path!

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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 28 Feb 2013, 20:12
So - not to hijack this thread, but its related - what finance related careers have more reasonable hours and vacation? I'm fine working 60-70 hours, but investment banking sounds more than that. And I like taking my vacation :-D

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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 28 Feb 2013, 21:06
There is this picture in my head in which
IB - Hours and hours of number crunching and monotonous repetitive work
MC - Solving new puzzles

Although I do know that this is not entirely true, I still find myself leaning towards MC. Would glady do 80 hours of solving new puzzles than 100 hours of repetitive work..
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 10 Apr 2013, 10:59
MacFauz wrote:
There is this picture in my head in which
IB - Hours and hours of number crunching and monotonous repetitive work
MC - Solving new puzzles

Although I do know that this is not entirely true, I still find myself leaning towards MC. Would glady do 80 hours of solving new puzzles than 100 hours of repetitive work..


And many people agree with you. You just make the trade-off of lower earnings potential. Years 1-2 out of business school you might not see a huge difference in pay (maybe $20-30k in banking's favor) but when you start hitting the VP+ levels the pay in banking takes off exponentially compared to consulting. Goes back to that lovely work/life balance that is a different priority for everybody.
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 10 Apr 2013, 21:14
mappleby wrote:
MacFauz wrote:
There is this picture in my head in which
IB - Hours and hours of number crunching and monotonous repetitive work
MC - Solving new puzzles

Although I do know that this is not entirely true, I still find myself leaning towards MC. Would glady do 80 hours of solving new puzzles than 100 hours of repetitive work..


And many people agree with you. You just make the trade-off of lower earnings potential. Years 1-2 out of business school you might not see a huge difference in pay (maybe $20-30k in banking's favor) but when you start hitting the VP+ levels the pay in banking takes off exponentially compared to consulting. Goes back to that lovely work/life balance that is a different priority for everybody.


Maybe I can cope with working for all that time... But I see absolutely no time for a good night's sleep (maybe 6 hours) and at least an hour at the gym..... It's not until people lose it that they realize that good health really is the most important wealth...
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average? [#permalink] New post 11 Apr 2013, 06:32
MacFauz wrote:
There is this picture in my head in which
IB - Hours and hours of number crunching and monotonous repetitive work
MC - Solving new puzzles

Although I do know that this is not entirely true, I still find myself leaning towards MC. Would glady do 80 hours of solving new puzzles than 100 hours of repetitive work..


MC is not puzzle solving as it may appear from Case Studies etc. MC is a people driven business. To really excel in MC(Partner Level) you need to be a people person. I Banking is pretty boring. However there are other areas of Finance such as Investment Research, Financial Advisory that involve more domain knowledge than MC and are less boring than I-Banking. However have been told that I Banking in an entry ticket to these roles.
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Re: IB in the US - how many days off per year on average?   [#permalink] 11 Apr 2013, 06:32
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