Morning Coffee: So, big tech firms pay a lot less than big banks. Barclays’ non-move in crypto

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Goldman Sachs or Facebook? Big finance or big tech? Banks have slowly been losing ground to their funkier Silicon Valley rivals in the battle for top graduates and MBAs.

But while banks won’t offer you a hipster office environment (sneakers and kombucha at Goldman in San Francisco aside), they may still offer you something much better: more money.

Facebook recently announced in its annual proxy that its employees earned a median total compensation package of more than $240k in 2017 – a number high enough to make headlines in the Wall Street Journal.  On Tuesday, however, Goldman’s blistering first-quarter results cast a bulge-bracket-sized shadow over Facebook’s new pay figures.

Goldman’s total compensation costs – bonuses, salaries and other benefits paid to its 37,300 staff – rose 25% year on year in Q1 to $4.1bn. The average Goldmanite therefore earned more than $110k in just three months, up from $96k during the same quarter last year, reports CNN.

The new Goldman and Facebook pay stats don’t make for a like-for-like comparison (average pay figures are more prone to being inflated by a few top earners than median ones are). Nevertheless, the timing is unfortunate for Facebook – earning $110k a quarter seems unimaginable at the social-media giant, but very much attainable for the average person at Goldman.

Separately, will cryptocurrency trading jobs be opening up soon at Barclays? The bank doesn’t seem to sure. Insiders have told Bloomberg that Barclays has done a preliminary assessment of demand for a new crypto desk, but a spokesperson for the firm said there were no concrete plans to start such an operation.

Entering an asset class as volatile as crypto could go down well with investment banking boss Tim Throsby, who wants to pivot his business toward higher-risk trading activities. However, only last week, Barclays released a pricing model for Bitcoin which treated it like an infectious disease and predicted it’s probably on the decline.


ECM pushes Societe Generale SA to step up its search for a successor to deputy chief executive officer Didier Valet. (Bloomberg)

Will Barclays move into cryptocurrency trading? (Telegraph)

Larry Fink is now a billionaire. (Bloomberg)

All you need to know about BoA – in three charts. (Bloomberg)

Morgan Stanley talks up diversity. (CNBC)

Musical chairs in Asian investment banking. (Bloomberg)

Hedge fund managers defend themselves. (CNBC)

This is how you partner up with J.P. Morgan (Business Insider)

Why I left Goldman for a cryptocurrency start-up. (Business Insider)

Image credit: nopparit, Getty

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