Graduated without any work experience, any chance of getting into IB?


So I’ve just finished a degree in economics, with top grades throughout, but I;ve only just decided that I want to go into Investment Banking.

As such I’ve got no work experience. I have been told that it is pointless applying to IB graduate schemes in this position.

Anyone heard anything to the contrary? thanks


it’s still worth a try especially if you have good extra-curricular activities or volunteer work lined up on your CV


all you need to do is start applying as soon as the apps open for the next recruitment round (usually end of august). in the meantime go get some work experience. anything relevant to financial services/ the field you would like to work in even if it means you have to work for free. as long as you show you are proactive and apply early you will be fine. good luck.



What advice would you have for someone who has been interning at a Wealth Management Firm for 5 months and wants to apply for a Sales & Trading role? I applied to all the top tier IB’s the last recruitment round but could not get a single interview and I have been temping/ interning through the year. I have a Mathematics & Economics degree (2:2 but with EC graduated 2009) and I just need a chance to demonstrate my motivation and industry knowledge. I know I dont have an impressive CV but I am absolutely certain that I can make up for this through my work ethic and tenacity.


@hampshire It’s going to be difficult, while extra-curriculars are quite useful, banks want to see some work experience especially for grad roles. You’re up against the usual lot, oxbridge grads with goldman, morgan stanley internships so the competition is incredibly tough. If you live in London, unpaid internships are your best bet, and start approaching boutiques. You could also try for some off-cycle internships, I think Citi has one starting February for their investment banking department.

But to be blunt, if you want to get into the bulge brackets, there’s very little chance of getting an interview for a grad analyst position without any experience.


@axelone, thanks for your honest advice. Do you think the bulge brackets would offer interviews for summer intern positions, given that by then it will have been 2 years since my penultimate year of university?


That is unlikely, I think most of the big banks only offer internships to penultimate years, Deutsche, BofA I know for sure. But you could contact HR and find out directly. But even if they do accept grads, they would give preference to penultimate years. I think your best bet is boutiques and/or off-cycle internships. You may also want to consider some investment management firms, some of them look for interns year round, grads or current students (e.g. Schroders) It might not be pure investment banking (I assume you’re considering IBD) but it’s quite relevant.