Why is NYC the end all be all for IB?

If people go into this industry for the money, and they can get paid just as much as they would in NYC in a city where every dollar goes twice as far, why is NYC the goal?

Unless you're already loaded and just do this job so you can tell ppl you work at Goldman Sachs, it doesn't make sense.


Really not hard to understand, young people enjoy living in NYC.  It has endless things to offer.  For a lot of people, the ability to live in NYC is well worth the cost differences.  You couldn't pay me to live in Minneapolis, Cleveland, Charlotte or some other places with IB presence.  Some people like those cities but many don't.

It doesn't make sense to you that people who are deeply interested in finance & commerce would want to live in the mecca of finance and commerce?

This is like asking why a jew would live in Israel or a surfer would live on the coast.   

I'm sick of people who don't like their jobs making it sound like we're all submissive slaves. I for one, love my job, love my life, love NYC and wouldn't move to the boonies if it entailed free housing. 

Yinz in the flesh
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Several things:

  • EGO-people tend to really want to be involved with "bigger deals", higher paychecks, or more well known transactions
  • Opportunity-there's just more firms and more money in NYC relative to other places.
  • Focus on salary and paycheck over profit. Young people initially are very focused on getting a high salary and that continues for a long time. No one talks about their post expenses earnings, they say "I made $1m last year" ask yourself would you rather make $1m a year and spend 800k or make 500k and spend 300k. Technically both are the same in terms of savings, but they aren't in terms of ego.
  • Focus on relative measurements vs absolute and keeping up with everyone else-sure you could have a big house in Charlotte and save the same as someone in NYC, but people might have never heard of your firm. Also, everyone that is cool is in nyc because the most amount of people are in NYC

All the above stated, as someone who took the otherside of the bet, if you can find a world or national class firm and not have the expenses of Nyc, it's pretty nice and you build wealth pretty fast. However, many people love the culture of NYC, so it's really based on the type of person you are.

Much more opportunity in NYC. SF is the other big finance hub but it's a less nice city to live in and still very expensive.

You can do IB in cities like Houston or Charlotte, but you have less long-term career opportunities than someone in NY. IB/PE pay very well, someone a few years in is not struggling on money even in NYC

DO NOT RECOMMEND NYC TO MOST. I have worked for a boutique consulting firm this year near Times Square area. I don't think this is subjective when I say the whole city feels like a public restroom at a baseball game. Smelly and dirty, legitimately feels like a rotting city. People are crazy physically,mentally, and there outward appearance. Generally feels very unstable and a tragic place to raise a family. I don't know how people can grow up and be sane there, Legit people walk on each other, breathe on each other it's like a ton of rats. This seems like an exaggeration but it's truthfully the best way I can describe it.

The question focuses on a singular job, not the ecosystem of opportunities, which is relatively myopic. Being in the hub of any sector provides the best ability to network, change jobs, start companies, etc. Sure you can go to a tier 2 city but your options are really constrained if you want/need a new job. This isn't to say its a bad thing to live in a lower cost city...but there is just a real cost and that is optionality. 

My LI over the past decade has been full of finance kids wanting to move from SF to NYC or Charlotte to NYC

Never once saw the other way. Take that for what it is. Isn't hard to understand if you open your mind a bit. There's no one fit solution, so yes you can definitely have a better time working in investment banking in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan but that's a minority of the youth's preferences. 

Saying you don't know any bankers in NYC itching to get out and go to a up and  coming place like charlotte seems far fetched. NYC may have been cool like 30 years ago but now not that great and networking can be done anywhere 

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