FAQ

Personal Finance

1) What is Your View on the Personal Finance Industry? This requires an extremely lengthy response (outlined by hundreds of posts on this blog). In short, the current personal finance industry is a scam in our view where each individual attempts to *seem just like you* in order to sell you advice that will only lead to $1,000 in extra *savings*. The standard pitch is “I was 25-35 years old with $XX in credit card debt and made it by…. “. In reality is no one gets rich by penny pinching, the same bloggers giving out such information make $500K+ from their personal finance blogs which is how they really make money. It is not mathematically possible to get rich with $30K per year in total savings. You need to move your income into the multi-six-figure range before you start accumulating real wealth. If you were to make $400K in a single year your total savings could be $300K+ which is ~60x larger than the median of just $5K assuming a 10% savings rate.

2) What Do You Think About the Stock Market Levels? Always the same answer, do not worry much about the stock market. In general you shouldn’t care if the S&P is at 1,700 or 3,000… simply dollar cost average into cheap ETFs such as VOO, SPY, DIA, etc.

If you’re trying to beat the stock market and you only have a half million dollars or so in the bank, your time will be better spent elsewhere (starting a biz!). $500K in the bank does not give you enough leverage to see out-sized returns. It means if you beat the bench mark by call it 5% that is only $25K. You may as well go and chase real revenue in a business. $25K for 10+hours a week is only $48/hour… That is significantly lower than what you’re making in your career anyway.

If the economy collapses? It doesn’t matter again. Generally recessions last about a year so you simply sit around and take the extra cash that was on the sidelines an buy any time there is a large correction. Your cash was on the sidelines because you want to continue buying through the dips so you get lower entry prices. Maybe you lost your job for a few months. No big deal. You had cash on the side to keep buying and get your next position.

If the market goes up 20%? Great already exposed getting richer!

What if inflation goes “crazy”? If you own assets…  you’re getting richer! If you own an asset such as a home, it typically goes up along with inflation.

3) I Make $50K and I am X Years Old What Do I Do? Some tough love, we think you can do better. If you look around there is money everywhere. A weekend in a high cost city driving an Uber will net you $30+ an hour. That is an extremely low estimate and yet that gets you an extra $60K per year. Why is it an *extra* 60K per year? Well, if you’re not working at least 80 hours per week and you’re not happy with your income… you have no one to blame but yourself. Anyone who believes they should be rich working 40 hours a week is going to be in for a rude awakening.

If anyone believes that anything over 40 hours is “too much work” then how exactly will that person catch up to someone with *more* talent putting in *more* time? If Person A is working 60 hours a week making $100K per year and you’re working 40 hours a week making $50K… You’re already making significantly less than Person A on an “hourly basis” and there is no way you’re going to catch up by working less and learning less.

Get to the grind! We also strongly suggest you read our post on careers. Finally, if you really want to get rich, you must start a business. 

4) I get it, Sales, Wall Street and Silicon Valley are the Only Careers to Get Rich, Which Position do I Take?

We are glad you see the light! As stated many times, the *fastest* way to get rich is with a scalable business where you are selling a product that adds value to everyday lives. Assuming you do not have an idea yet, it is wise to hedge your bets and build skills in one of those three positions. (IE: may as well start a career until you have at least one revenue generating idea)

We do not give out advice that is not based on real experience so for Silicon Valley we suggest you reach out to top tier Silicon Valley people. We are not the best people to ask. Search around, find people who are worth at least $1M (liquid, earned by themselves, $0 inherited) by the age of thirty or so and ask them for advice.

Sales is partially related to Wall Street (it relates to the sell side). With that said, if you don’t want to go into sales, then we suggest looking up mentors (again) in the sector you wish to work in (again) and background check the mentor to make sure he earned it all himself (again). The one piece of advice we can give, is that recurring higher end sales will be much better than trying to sell in volume (we recommend enterprise software sales)

Wall Street, this one we can easily answer. Go to the position that is closest in relevant work experience. If you want to run a long-only portfolio in the future (long-term) it makes sense to have an internship at the bottom of the totem pole in Financial Advisory and work your way up to wealth management/asset management. If you want to work in private equity, then you need to build you experience in transaction based work. You go from a low end boutique in investment banking to a bulge bracket to a PE firm.

When it comes to Wall Street, always always always choose the job function over the bank name. If you can become an investment banking analyst at a mid sized bank this is going to be significantly better than working at Goldman Sachs wealth management. Again, always.

Finally, when you’re deciding where to start you should always ask what your resume looks like. Ideally you have some connections and can get some relevant experience somewhere near the lower end of the totem pole (lets call it wealth management). In that case you then work up from there and improve your options. If you are starting from zero then you simply blast your resume to anyone and everyone who will listen. Remember, if you don’t have any offers, you don’t have any options so you may have to start from the bottom.

5) Where Do You Track Your Investments?  For those that are serious about developing multiple streams of income and a high net worth, we can recommend Personal CapitalThe Company offers *free* software tools with the following four key features: 1) ability to avoid losing money by tracking all fees associated with an investment product allowing you to choose the best possible fund for your future, 2) portfolio analysis where your risk profile is stacked up against your current age and retirement goals, 3) in addition to these free tools, you can also track your net worth and path to becoming a millionaire and 4) when you hit $100K in networth you’ll receive a free one time consultation with an investment professional at Personal Capital. After linking up all of your accounts you’ll be able to sit back and watch as your net worth goes up and your fees remain minimal over the next several years. We strongly believe that Personal Capital is the premier personal finance software tool when compared to its competitors such as Mint. If you’re looking to avoid personal financial collapse, it makes sense to track everything in one place for *free*.

Wall Street

1) How Much do People on Wall Street Get Paid? Here is the breakdown. We have listed information beyond the entry level positions. If you don’t believe the data, feel free to purchase a full compensation package from Glocap or another headhunter firm. You’ll be wasting your money because we have the numbers right here for free. This is a *guideline*. The numbers below reflect the latest bonus cycle.

Investment Banking (2016 numbers)

Analyst – Base ~$80-100K (100% targeted bonus) 150-200K (age 22-25)

Associate – Base $125-180 (100% targeted bonus minimum) $230-365K if you are promoted to VP (age 26-33, wide range due to young talent and MBAs)

VP – Base $200-225K (100%+, call it 125% targeted bonus due to revenue generation, total $400-550K) (age 30+)

Director – Base ~$250K (Variable call it 1.5x base salary target due to revenue generation, somewhere around $600K) (age 32+)

Managing Director – Base ~$350K (Variable, call it 2x base salary as a target due to revenue generation, somewhere around $975K) (age 32+)

*Note: Yes base salaries at the junior level are moving up a tad, call it $5-10K depending on if you’re an analyst or an associate. However, as the numbers show, your goal is to get promoted since the variable numbers become larger and larger as a % of your salary

2) Should I Take a Financial Modeling Courses? No. Absolutely not. We have given a free three statement model when we first started blogging and that is all you need to be able to build. Income Statement, Balance Sheet, Cash Flow and bottoms up by segment. It is older but this does not matter. Replace it with any company and you’re set. You should be able to build this in 1-2 days maximum.

Spend the rest of your time developing people skills, sales skills etc. 

Nail in Coffin. Every bank has different models and will train you for several weeks before you start your career. If you can build a three statement model (clean) you’re going to be fine. If you *must* take “classes” then take excel courses that teach you short cuts (formatting short cuts – alt e-s- (letter), navigation short cuts – F5 and others).

Most won’t listen and will become financial processing monkeys (career suicide). You will do much better than them in your career if you focus on what matters. Salesmanship, strategic thinking (reading about the sector/industry/structuring of deals) and relationships.

3) What Bank/Group do I Join? This question misses the point by a country mile. The question is, which bank/Group will allow you to get promoted the fastest. Always choose the one with the highest promotion rate. If you have no idea which group is good and you are starting blind then you turn to prestige for long-term career development and the rank order is as follows. Elite Boutique: (Moelis, Qatalyst, Centerview, Evercore, Lazard, etc.) Bulge Bracket (Goldman, Morgan Stanley, Citi, etc.); Middle Market (Jefferies, Piper Jaffray, etc.) No-Name Banks (simply make sure it is the same job function).

Importantly, if you want to go into Private Equity and get a career offer in private equity you *take* it. If you want to go into banking and get an offer in banking…. you *take* it. There is no point in “learning something” to jump later. Always jump straight into the position if possible.

Remember after your first job none of this matters at all anymore. From that point forward you choose the firm that is going to promote you the fastest. Think smart. It is about responsibility not prestige. Reiterate: Promotion and responsibility first, prestige last. People who obsess over prestige will earn less than those who focus on getting promoted and obtaining more responsibility.

4) Industry Overview on XXX Sector? It depends on demandthese are for Wall Street folk and we’ll do them if an industry gets hot. This means it’s likely but no promises. We have done quite a few industry overviews and you can see them below. These take a lot of time since we don’t want to constantly update valuation tables.

A Detailed Look at Financial Institutions Group

Overview of the Consumer Sector

Overview of the Healthcare Sector

Overview of the Oil and Gas Sector

A Detailed Look at Technology Media and Telecom (TMT)... also find Part 2 here

We will try to do more of these over time.

5) Will You Do Resume Reviews? No thanks, we do not trade time for money. In addition, everyone should learn how to best present themselves (ie: sales!). With all of the time in the world… you’re learning how to communicate your value in a single page. Better to learn these important skills early. Once you have the email and resume templates, the rest is up to you to work on and master. We have clear outlines on how to write a better resume and how a one page resume should look. Yes we said one page for a reason, 2 page resumes will be thrown in the trash.

6) Can You Hire Me? No. We thought about using this as a recruiting tool but it took too much time. We have helped a large number of people obtain careers already and many of them were from non-target schools. 

This blog was much much smaller back then and based on our 100% conversion rate we knew the blog had the correct tools to allow anyone interested to break in. If you follow the advice here and grind it out, you’ll be much better off long-term. IE: getting into the Street with no hand holding will serve you well in your actual career.

7) I am XX Years Old What Do I Do to Break In? We also get this one far too many times, here’s the general guideline.

Student: The same structure always applies. 1) Target School, 2) 3.5+ GPA with finance courses taken, 3) Work Experience – this can override a bad GPA and 4) start networking.

Major? Choose the closest to finance. Business + emphasis on finance classes. Engineering + finance is also great. Economics + finance also works. Finally, triple check at the career center to see where people end up. Accounting + corporate finance classes are *required* otherwise the recruiters/HR won’t think you are prepared or serious about a Wall Street career.

If you have to choose between target and non-target. Bite the bullet, go to the target.

If your GPA is a 3.4? Take a couple easy classes bump it to a 3.5

If you have no work experience? Will be extremely difficult to get any interviews. Start networking and start at the bottom if you have to in a job such as asset management intern at a tiny firm.

If you don’t have contacts? You are increasing your reliance on the filter system. Not a good idea.

Analyst: If you are 25 years old or younger, keep gunning for an entry level slot as an analyst. This means you pass CFA level 1 if you have absolutely no finance experience to prove you understand the basics and then you get straight to networking. If you’re at a non-target then read our post on how to network/recruit. Now if you are from a no name school, no work experience and low GPA. You have next to no shot and are better off going to get an MBA later in life. This is the truth. As a non-target or older candidate with no experience, you need to have something to bring to the table otherwise you will lose time and time again to 22 year old candidates with banking internships, top GPAs and a great school.

Associate: If you are 26-33 years old this is your second chance to break in. If you have nothing related to finance, probably best to get an MBA.

Vice President and Above: Likely 33+ years old and you’re making a switch from a revenue generating career. In this case you should already know if you’re well qualified. Generally speaking, if you’re in a sales role or run a product line at a firm and are paid $300K+… You’re likely a good fit (this is general as most people who are in this slot know if they have the skills to move to the sell-side or not)

There you have it, it will answer 99% of questions. If you’re young you simply network and spin your resume assuming you have some skills that are transferable. If you’re in your late 20s you’re likely better off with a top MBA.

8) Networking?

This is now the most common question, none of these answers will ever change.

Part 1: Networking Email for Work

The only reason to change the format is for extremely small boutique type shops (No name, we are not referring to solid firms such as Lazard/Moelis etc.).

1) Introduction of who you are (one short sentence)

2) Why you want to work for them and how you can contribute (2 short sentences)

3) How you can be reached (attach resume)

Thanks,

Name

Simple Example:

“Hi, my name is XXX I have worked at XXX bank for 1 year as an investment banking analyst in the Healthcare group. I am interested in joining the team at (Firm) and believe I would be a great fit due to XX and XX transactions. In addition, I understand the group specializes in XX and XX where I have experience due to XX and XX. If there are any opportunities to join the team, I can be reached at (xxx) xxx-xxxx and have attached my resume as well.

Thanks,

Name

That is it, no reason to boil the ocean, keep it simple. You can change the words around to be even more concise or appropriate to your specific situation but this will ensure you get to the point and show what you have to offer immediately.

The most insulting thing you can do is send them a long winded email. Why? You’re wasting their valuable time.

Part 2: Networking for Career Events

This is even shorter than the email because you’re going to get into a conversation as soon as you go through this introduction. Shake the person’s hand when it is your turn to talk to the person at the booth and proceed as follows:

“Hi, I’m (name) a (junior/senior/sophomore) graduating in 20XX studying (major). I am interested in joining (group/division) because of (reason) and (relevant experience) which I think can add value to the firm. Do you mind giving me a quick overview of (specific question about group/division)?”

That is all, filling in the blanks is up to you.

Part 3: Networking to Meet Women

Again we are getting even shorter. The skills needed to meet women are hard to master but are easy to understand. There are only four currencies you barter with: 1) Looks, 2) personality/entertainment/social skills, 3) Money and 4) other women

Night Club: Your main currencies are other women (now you are friends with the staff), Money (tip heavy now you are good friends with the staff), Dress/look sharp (now it is easier to meet people everyone wants to talk to attractive men/women).

Day Game: Main currencies are 1) looks and 2) social skills. It is harder to show your net-worth in this environment beyond dressing sharp.

Social Circle: Main currencies again are entertainment/personality/social skills. This is followed by money which you can use  to buy more entertainment/excitement. Looks are less of a factor since you’re already part of the “in group”.

It really is as simple as above. Ask yourself where you’re weak and begin fixing those weaknesses. It will take a large amount of time to get good.

Part 4: Networking to Meet Business Partners

Even shorter!

Fill the Gap.

This means develop a skill and fill the void for people who need this skill. If you work in real estate and have an incredible ability to add ROI to a home through renovation but don’t have the cash, then you should search out people who have broken down properties that need renovation (with ROI in mind of course)

Final Notes: If you have no skills, no money, no friends, and you’re not interesting… You’re not ready to network at all. You need to build a set of skills first. Go practice on everything that will help you network first (work skills, money, entertainment skills – living an interesting life)

Life

1) How Do I improve my Diet? We have covered diet advice in a post. If you haven’t taken a look then go ahead and read the post. If you’re slogging 80 hours a week you need to be efficient and as we stated before, if you don’t want to read the post, here’s the basic outline:

Breakfast: Fruit + Protein. Worst case a protein shake in the AM and a banana/fruit bowl on your way to work

Lunch: If you have a high paying job, lunch is used to improve your political positioning so you always eat with people so suck up the $10-12 meals

Dinner: You can get $25+ from your company, do not waste it on unhealthy food. Most people will eat terribly which starts the downward spiral. There are hundreds of options online using seamless. If you don’t have to work late… then make your meal at home after your day is done.

By doing this you guarantee 2/3 of your main meals are healthy. Lunch may be hit or miss, but if you’re smart all 3 will be perfectly fine and you won’t break the bank.

2) When Should I Work Out? Well do you even work out? If you’re under 30 years old and you don’t work out 5 days a week you’ve already lost in the first place. If you have been working out 6 days a week, you probably already have a healthy routine! See how that works? So the question is not when you should work out, it is if you even work out in the first place. We got this question many times and the answer when pushed is exactly the same.

“There is no science, there is simply consistency.”

Consistency is how you keep yourself honest. If you can make it to the gym and lift correctly, you’re going to see gains.

3) Does Money Attract Women? Yes. Anyone who says otherwise has never made a good amount of money. Here is a general guideline since the question is asked so frequently:

$50K or less: it will be a negative to your sex life because you are not making enough

$50K – $100K: in a regular city this will be perfectly fine, in a *major city* it is still a detriment to your sex life

$100K-$175K: in a regular city you’re doing well, in a major city it now has no negative or positive impacts to your sex life

$175-$250K: Positive impact to your sex life in practically *every city*

$250-500K: Significant positive, less because of your life but because of the value of your time. At this point you’re extremely busy, you’re traveling, you’re not available, these are traits that will make you incredibly attractive. It won’t be possible to fake these trips/traits.

$500K+: It is practically impossible to blow through this type of money with common sense and everything in the previous tier are truer.

$1M+: If you can make this income at any point in your life you’re set. Your life changes because all of your actions value your time and comfort. You fly business/first class and do not care. You live a life that is impossible to fake.

Given the range and scope of this blog, it is certainly possible to get to $250-500K (before mid 30’s of course). This is achievable for anyone who wants it. When you start pushing up on high 6 figures and 7 figure numbers, you’re going to have to do something special.

4) Are You Writing a Book? Maybe. The answer has not changed much. At the end of the day we don’t want to put in the effort to actually earn money from it at this time. Based on previous product launches in other business lines we know the sales number would equate to low to mid five figures, this is simply not worth the amount of time necessary to create the book. As of now, this blog will remain as a hobby and we’re happy to help people with smart questions left in specific posts.

5) What College Should I Attend? You need to attend a top tier college or you need to attend a junior college and transfer to a top tier college. If you don’t want to do this, then you must become an entrepreneur. Many people now suggest avoiding college all together. We disagree depending on the math. You will find that most successful people at least obtain entrance into top schools and then become successful later by dropping out or starting a company later.

With that said, college is a *major* life changing decision, you do not rack up $100K+ in debt just to get a piece of paper. If you can make say $30K a year without a degree or $80K with a degree, then we suggest that your college education is worth $50K of debt. The point is that the degree you obtain needs to increase your earnings otherwise it is of no value. Our full post on college is here.

Comments

  1. Naval Officer says

    Any tips for a military officer transitioning from the military to the civilian sector? Or perhaps anyone in general who is in the military looking at wall street. I will be 28 when I have the chance to get out and so the posts made about what college graduate can do does not apply. Plus, there are not that many networking opportunities that are available to us unlike someone in the civilian sector. Any tips/suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      This one is rather easy, get an MBA. While we don’t recommend it generally for college students as you can get promoted, usually military men go the MBA route as they can get into a top 10 business school. If your situation is significantly different from this let us know.

      Generally, Wall St loves ex-military, because it means you do not complain all day long

  2. College Applicant says

    In a few of your articles you mention target schools…
    I am applying to university in the fall and I want to get into investment banking.
    Any suggestions?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      This one is very easy, go to the career center website for each college and find out how many investment banks recruit at the school.

      As a starter, all IVY league schools and top 10 undergrad business programs

  3. Engineer says

    I cannot describe how perfect and timely this blog is – really enjoying having a window to someone who is so far along the path of success in all its glory: Finances, health and bitches.

    I’m a 24 year old who’s been out of college for a little over a year and have been working as an Engineer for relatively new Energy/Power department in a larger civil engineering company. My income now is 55k base with maybe 5-7k in overtime/bonus per annum. I make about 10K-13K on the side as a guitar player at bars. Living costs are ridiculously low since I live in bum fuck Arkansas ($460 rent.. at least its a college town). I can hope to make 6 figures in about 6 years or so in my present industry.

    Almost all my free time now is spent reading and learning about the financial world (Intelligent Investor, Baron’s Business reviews, khanacademy online videos, understanding SEC filings, investopedia).

    1) Does it make more sense for me to spend a good few years in my industry, get my professional engineering license and develop niche knowledge? I can pursue a graduate degree in my field on the side (company will pay for it, but not an MBA)
    2) Alternatively, I can either go for an MBA (on the side or full time) or spend time hunting down an entry level analyst position.
    3) A new third option has recently arisen courtesy of my proximity to Walmart home office and some networking: I can potentially move into an entry level category management position for a walmart vendor. My thoughts are that might get me experience and potentially an in with a larger company with a higher starting pay.

    Just to clarify, my goals are financial freedom and pussy.

    For someone who doesn’t want kids, you are father figures to a growing group of young men seeking their place in the world. You do a good thing here.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      1. No, we have covered this. The quick answer is that Wall Street is risk averse so we only care about Wall Street experience.
      IE: 1 year in Investment banking > 4 years as an engineer. Do everything you can to break into the Street early. The longer you wait the harder it becomes.

      2. Yes an MBA can work, but ideally you can break in without it, avoid the $200K opportunity cost of attending a Business School if at all possible.

      3. A Walmart vendor is unrelated to Wall Street, see our post on “Navigating Wall Street”. In your situation, would read up on all the Wall Street related posts and avoid the game related posts until you decide where you wish to go with your career.

      On that note, overall your situation looks great for a young guy. You have a high paying job (on a relative basis to where you are living – great job on the low rent) so overall you’re ahead of 90% of the pack. You may want to stay within the same career (always run the numbers) but if you decide to break into the Street the posts on here will help you do so.

  4. anon1 says

    best way to keep up the positive momentum going despite remaining in a clusterfuck of a work/life/play situation?

    i.e all of the environment points towards being laughably bad, how to move forward from that. especially with regards to making money, while everyone and everything is running you down

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      If you’re referring to Wall Street it is only really a “cluster fuck” for about 3 years. Most people don’t survive past year 3… quit and end up missing all the *good* years.

      Your hours drop by 20-30% and your pay doubles… year 5+ is even better.

  5. brosef says

    Any tips on getting started or teaming up with partners for capital, but without certification? I hold a B.A. in Management, no further education, early 30’s. I feel too old to intern and go back to school. I am sales as a freight broker, which i like to think is as real-time as stocks, considering price of oil, weather, etc…. I live in a small town and try to network a lot. I was debating about going back to school or starting my own brokerage, but didn’t want to take in more debt. I already dabble in some small investing (real estate, stocks, personal businesses), but would like to learn and gain knowledge on how to take the next step and get bigger results.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      It looks like you don’t know where you want to go at this point. Raising money for what?

      Generally the tiers of raising money are as follows:

      1. Angel funding
      2. Seed funding (Series A/B/C etc.)
      3. Bridge Loans
      4. IPO

      We discussed this in our post on venture capital. One major issue is many people try to start businesses with no real passion for the business. They are just looking to “make money”. You’ll get zero funding with this type of business. You need both the Passion + Obsessive drive and the numbers to get real money/funding.

  6. Tim says

    Hey. I am a recent UCLA graduate with a neuroscience degree and a 3.5 GPA. I want to work in finance/banking/Wall Street, but I have absolutely no idea how to break in.

    I was thinking about getting my Master’s in quantitative finance. Would this be a good way to help me land into a finance or banking job?

    Does the school I attend matter? If so, any tips for making me stand out when it comes to admissions?

    Thank you so much!

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      On a glance since you do not appear to have experience. You would likely be best served doing one of two things.

      1. Network incredibly well -> enter a boutique investment bank

      2. Obtain a corporate job related to neuro science at a major corporation for 3+ years –> MBA –> Health care investment banking associate

      The vast majority of elite Wall Street professionals rarely have anything beyond an MBA (simply Google all top tier HF managers, PMs, Managing Directors etc.) Unless you’re attempting to be a Quant (*minority* on Wall Street) then you have no use in anything beyond an MBA

  7. TWIG says

    I have a few questions regarding credit cards. I’ve had a credit card for somewhere in the neighborhood of 4-5 years and last time I checked, had a credit score of 730+. I use my credit card for everything. Sadly I’ve always had a cc through my financial institution (credit union) that has zero rewards so I’ve definitely missed out, but better now than never to make a transition.

    What suggestions on cc’s should I look into? The Discover card seems like the best option for me at a glance, but I’d really like your suggestions. Thoughts? I start my final year of college come August if that makes any difference.

    Another thing: In the hack your credit card post, it was mentioned that the first credit card obtained should always be kept open to have a longstanding credit history. While my card is still open, I have not used it in over a year. It has a $3,000 limit and the current one I use has a $1,000 limit. Is it more important just to have the credit line open or do I actually need to be using it? Also, when I do make the switch to a rewards cc, should I just close my second card?

    Thanks a ton for all the informative posts and thanks for taking the time to respond to this as well!

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      In your shoes would do the following

      1. Get your credit score to 750+ (at 750 is when you are now in excellent credit territory and you can now open the best credit cards available)

      2. While you should not close the original card, when you apply for your next card (on excellent credit) shut down the current card since it also does not appear to have rewards (your credit hit will go away after a few months)

      3. Historically, you should make at least 1 purchase a year on the “dead” credit card just to show long-term transactions (this may have changed) but better safe than sorry to just make 1 purchase a year

      4. When you use your $1000 card (as you wait for your credit rating to go to 750+) do not spend over $333. If you spend over a third your credit could take a temp hit.

      5. The rewards card you want (again once you get 750) should be a cash back credit card with no fees attached. There are a few 1) american express has one that gives 3% back on groceries, 2) visa has one that gives 3-5% back based on certain purchases.

      So you have to do your own research on that one to find the best cards.

  8. Ros says

    Hey, I am a college student and I’ve just been wondering where and how can I apply for a job for the summer. I’ve been applying to many online applications and in some regular jobs such as Wal-Mart, Pizza Hut and McDonalds but it seems like they never follow up with me after I apply online. And trust me it sucks being broke no matter how old you are. :/

    Got any advice for me?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      1. Go through your college career center

      2. Find jobs that can be placed on a professional resume, low end jobs like McDonalds and Pizza Hut will not help you long-term. Something as simple as being a tutor would help.

      3. Go to temp agencies

      4. Pick up a niche skill such as fixing iPhones and place the skill on craigslist

      The last thing you want to do is settle for a minimum wage job.

  9. Engineer says

    I am currently a year into an engineering position in an Energy-related field.

    What are your thoughts on working for 4+ years in my field and getting a grad degree (paid for by the company) in renewable Energy/smartgrid tech > MBA > Energy Investment Banking?

    That way I can minimize risk of losing income and time on the job switch, and increase my potential of working in a higher paying field down the line. I’ll be effectively ‘working’ 80+ hours/week with grad school and a full time position which will keep me disciplined and in mental shape as well. Presently, I am able to save/invest between 18K-25K a year, This will go up, since I don’t plan on scaling my lifestyle with my pay raises.

    I am also attempting to work part-time as a research analyst to keep my excel and data organising skills up to par.

  10. Bio Grad says

    Hello there. Great advice you have given so far!

    I was wondering what specifically do healthcare investment banks look for when recruiting? Do they recruit in the standard fashion, or do they prefer life science majors? How can I jazz up my research experience, knowledge of healthcare, and ability to understand the current climate?

    Thanks.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Exact same process, get finance experience. A finance degree > life science grad for all sectors. Undergrad finance degree from a top b-school > PHD in neuroscience for entry into healthcare investment banking.

      In addition
      MBA top biz school > PHD in medical for entry into Wall Street as well.

      This topic continues to come up so our next post will explain why no one cares about PHDs. In short Wall Street is sales, no one has any use for a PHD in anything unless your goal is to be a quant (then math/stats PHD is used). If your goal is not to become a quant go and get real finance experience or else you won’t get any interviews

      *Caveat… If you are older and go into a very specific medical sector in finance a PHD can help. This would be a HC specific hedge fund or even equity research. However we assume you are younger, in which case it does not matter one bit. The people who get a PHD to eventually go to Wall Street *already have* the necessary credentials.

  11. Scguy says

    Anybody use mint.com? I’ve thought about it, but I’m rather skeptical about allowing third-Party access to my finances, especially amidst this Edward Snowden stuff. Any other options?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      We highly recommend it.

      Using mint actually makes your finances safer, now you know when incorrect transactions are made as they will show up in your mint account. If your card is skimmed and you see an incorrect cash outlay you know the very day it happens as you check your account daily.

      If anything the Snowden stuff makes it even more likely anyone and everyone already has access to your information, so living in fear of being ID thefted is a bit nonsensical.

      We also covered protection of your identity, the solution is to have a few trusted friends have your real information, put out fake information all over the internet with random small changes to your name and now its a muddled mess as to who you are. That assumes you really need to go to that extent, most do not.

  12. Scguy says

    Sorry for the double post. I’m asking if the FDIC insurance can be voided as a result of willingly providing ypur password to 3rd parties

  13. Student says

    Nobody can predict the future, but with a banking climate containing so many regulatory and economic unknowns, do you see banking as being a financially rewarding career for a young person in 5 years?

    I’m sure this has been asked elsewhere on this blog, but which undergraduate major would be superior for breaking into the industry — economics or business?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Yes. Average pay out of college (22 years old) should be $150K or so (including bonus and assuming no major recession).

      3-5 years later you should make at least $250K. We already explained why Wall Street is paid well, it can be found with the search function.

  14. Focus says

    Self-improvement question.

    Any thoughts on how to improve focus, for working such long hours on such a brain-intensive activity such as financial modelling/studying? I have trouble staying focused and on task for long periods of time. So far my plan is morning runs, tons of blueberries, reading more on the side and attempting meditation. I know aderall is the miracle drug option, but I’m trying to learn the skill for the long term.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      1. Take breaks
      2. Get your health in order (no pasta, cookies, junk food, sodas etc)
      3. No need to run Aderall/Provigil unless truly necessary
      4. Physical activity of at least 1 hour per day (lifting is preferred in our view)

  15. Mutt says

    Great site.

    Just wondering why PE/HF is considered ‘better’ than IB – in terms of a lot of people wanting to end up there in their careers (judging by WSO).

    In this sense, would it be preferable to start in either of these 2 fields at the beginning of your career if possible?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Most on WSO don’t work on the Street so it is a perception issue.

      Buyside holds the cards so it is seen as “better”

      Overall if you speak to an elite sell side person versus a buyside person, the net earnings over time is usually about the same, unless you hit it big on the buyside which again is the allure.

      Overall if you have to choose between being directly promoted to an Associate in investment banking or moving to a 2 year and out PE shop… It really can be a tough call to make.

  16. Baron says

    I have been managing my own stock portfolio for several years now. I put extra money from my paycheck into my funds every month and have been doing ok with the return. What concerns me is that I hear some people talking about another coming crash of the market. Is this just rumour mongering or do you think there is anything to be concerned about?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Fear mongering. Take all the people who worry about doom and gloom and throw them into the “never answer calls from” bucket.

      There will be a recession in the future of course, this is how economies work (ebb and flow), worrying about it is a waste of your time, energy and life

  17. Anonymous says

    Okay whats the deal with this – One day I’m smooth, funny, charming – and the girl (bartender at this small and intimate little bar here) is all over me. Asks me to wait till I get off work, comps all my drinks and proceeds to take me out for a walk where we share a brief kiss before she runs away saying something about kids and a husband. Whatever. Except she and I really connected I think, despite all the alcohol.

    Fast forward to yesterday, (I’m a busy dude so I didn’t see her/text her all week) I’m back at the bar, just worked out, looking good, etc. Except this time its completely awkward, I’m fumbling for conversation, she will only hold eye contact briefly, and spends most of her conversation talking to my friend (a rather attractive friend that was there last time as well). She leaves straight after she gets off.

    I know know, its about the skill not the girl, don’t get oneitis, etc… but what the fuck just happened??

  18. AAA says

    I have really enjoyed reading your posts. It’s nice to see there are other people out there that are not afraid to work hard and enjoy their success. Keep up the good work!

  19. Vicious says

    So I see a lot of value on the blog about working in finance but little on the topic of personal finances and savings strategy. For someone not in a finance field this would be highly valuable to get your take on.

    What kind of personal savings strategy would you recommend? I’ve previously put all of my dough in the bank which obviously isn’t doing me much good. I’m thinking mutuals/funds/bonds maybe even stock (though I think it’s generally too risky for savings).

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Already covered in 7% return profile post.

      More specifically:
      1. Track all expenses with mint
      2. Only should have ~1month living expenses in checking/savings account
      3. All other assets should be invested in bonds/stocks/lending club and any other vehicle of your choice that will yield over 4%+ returns

      Over the last 5 years with interest rates near zero, you’re losing money hand over fist sitting in a checking account, CD, or savings account.

      May do a longer post in the future but the three steps above is all it really takes. If you’re money isn’t invested you’re losing over the long-term. You can always sell all your stocks/bonds in a real emergency so the emergency fund idea from financial pundits is bunk. Keep maybe 10% of net worth in cash but nothing more.

  20. Anonymous says

    Hi WSP,
    Currently have 2 offers out of college: one to do Financial Services Consulting at a big 4, the other at a boutique advisory firm (5 people only), focusing on debt/equity raising for mid-market companies (both in London). How would I best to position myself to break into IBD in a year or 2? Is CFA level 1 the way to go. qualification wise?

    Thanks again.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      All questions regarding which job you should take can be answered by the navigating wall street post.

      The CFA for investment banking is not useful.

      Accounting is far down the prestige ladder and likely won’t help you. A small Investment bank is hundreds of thousands of times better than accounting.

  21. TL says

    What age do men typically reach the peak of the careers? In other words, if there is an age where you haven’t made it yet, it simply won’t happen for you. What age would this be?
    Thanks!

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Since you are asking for the *minimum* here it is below:

      By 25 should have broken in to Wall St. as an IB analyst (minimum most are 21/22)

      Around 32 is max age for an associate entry if you’re 33+… you should be a VP. Again minimum

      Always shoot for much better than these metrics. But if you are not worth $1M+ by early to mid 30s you did something terribly terribly wrong.

  22. Brouhaha says

    Hi WSP,

    Thanks for your helpful articles and all the previous advice you’ve given me.

    I am coming from a 5 year college and 1 year in a corporate banking role (so I’m 2 years older than a normal 1st year analyst) and I have been attempting to lateral for the past few months. I have had some luck networking and getting interviews but keep losing out to more qualified candidates. As the job market begins to dry up and with undergrad recruiting in the near future (am I correct to assume these are both detriments?) I worry that I will no longer be able to lateral successfully. Additionally, it seems that every job posting is for an associate position, not much out there for analysts.

    Could I please get some next step advice when you get a chance? Stop chasing the dream and settle for a credit analyst/underwriting role (pipe dream is to work in distressed debt/ event driven fund someday)?Thanks again.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      On a glance you have about 6 to 11 months left to break into a Front Office role. On paper you will look young as you are only 1 year out of college.

      Being blunt you should apply to positions beyond simply investment banking. Look into the Wall Street map, any of the front office roles should be of value for you long term.

      Essentially you have about a year to obtain an entry level role in FO Wall Street and you should choose the job that is closest to investment banking, then position yourself for an associate role in the future if your goal is banking.

      • Brouhaha says

        Thanks WSP.

        As I struggle in IB analyst interviews as I attempt to leave my corporate banking position, when do I begin to lower expectations and look for lesser roles?

        Should I be looking at DCM/ECM, consulting, other corp banking roles, etc.? I would like to avoid the specter of having poor exit opportunities in the future, like I do in the present.

        I feel that I should stop at nothing to land an IB role as that is the only experience that is actually desired by companies looking for hires with 2-3 years exp. (HF’s, PE, associate roles, etc.) Can’t remember the last time I saw a PE/HF job post that accepted corp. banking, consulting, or other types of alternative experience.

      • Wall Street Playboys says

        Similar advice as above. You have to choose the best option you have within a short time frame. Entering into ECM is not going to ruin your career, you could switch from ECM/DCM to a different piece of IB (say healthcare IB) within a year.

        Simply put, jump into the best position possible as outlined by the Wall Street map and go from there. Finally, consulting would be far worse than ECM/DCM.

      • Brouhaha says

        I’ve been attempting to use the map but I think you would agree that there are so many nuances and circumstances that can change how one should approach it:

        For example, does corporate banking fall under corporate finance? Is a credit analyst at a BB better than an analyst at a boutique IB?

      • Wall Street Playboys says

        A boutique investment bank >>>> BB credit analyst. Again the map is correct because you are searching for job responsibilities.

        ECM/DCM at a no name bank will be significantly better than Corporate Treasury Analyst at a Fortune 500.

        The misconception is that the name matters more than the job functions. You always choose the job function.

        As another example Equity Research at Goldman Sachs is not as good as Investment Banking at Jefferies in terms of pay and prestige. (side note yes a senior Equity research associate at Goldman will be better than Investment banking analyst, however the point stands, straight out of college into ER at Goldman or IB at Jefferies you choose IB at Jefferies, unless of course you want to do ER long term)

        Most people who have never worked within the industry simply look at the name of the firm, be certain these people have never stepped foot in a front office role.

        Finally, you can quickly tell if the corporate banking role is legitimate, if you are not working on Raising Capital or M&A you know with certainty it is a back office role.

  23. Locke says

    I read an article here where WallStreetPlayboy fixed watches as a means of earning money. I am currently in a tough financial situation and I was curious whether you could describe what books you read and the tools needed to learn to fix watches. Your help would be greatly appreciated.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Will have an article on why you never work for minimum wage in the future.

  24. Duke it Out, baby says

    Current BB banker looking to jump over to long/short equity or activist HF in NYC. A couple questions:

    1. Does head hunter fee come out of my future pay, or does firm cover that?
    2. Is going without a Head hunter a viable path to get to a solid HF? I’m not interested in mega funds.
    3. What is typical base / salary mix for midsized Long/short or activist HF in NYC after 1 year on banking?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      1. No. The Company pays the headhunter the fee.
      2. It is a viable path, just remember headhunters are not your friend. They are in it for the commission.
      3. Mix is wide. You’re looking at $100-300K range for total compensation depending on size of firm and fund performance. Your base should at minimum remain constant with your 2nd year analyst pay at $80K+ (think flat to up) however, the vast majority of your pay will be tied to bonus (this is how the hedge fund industry works in general even as you move up the ladder).

      1 Year in banking usually does not land you a position. You typically begin searching after completing year 1 and will lock in a position over the next 6 months, finish your stint full 2 years and move to the new HF job. There are always exceptions so if you land a position that allows you to start early feel free to take it.

      • Duke it Out, baby says

        Hmmm, had 10 guys in our group last year, and 3 left for HF before 9 months were done. Competitive group at BB so might not be the norm, but it happens.

        5 years back MS M&A guys would all leave after 1 year.

  25. Bloke says

    What is the best way to handle a hookup girl who may be starting to develop feelings for you? No dating is involved, this has been strictly a text, sex, always at her place and never stayed over. The sex is amazing, so I’d hate to break it off completely.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      This is your call. Just realize the longer you continue the more attached she’ll become

      • Bloke says

        I guess its one more good bang and then ‘the talk’. Yesh. Could be worse… at least I’m not married.

  26. TWIG says

    I had an evaluation today with the current place I intern for (accounting department of a consulting firm, A/R, A/P, billing, admin), and it went really well. Although it’s an internship, it’s more of a part time job with potential to turn into a full time offer upon graduation. I do still plan on interviewing for IBD/ER this coming fall though.

    Anyways, the controller mentioned that if there’s ever a class/seminar I wanted to attend, the company would more than likely approve and fund it as long as it helps me in my current role. As an intern I feel like this is a really unique opportunity and something I should probably take advantage of. I wanted to see if I could get suggestions on ways to take advantage of this opportunity. I know WSP is pretty against financial modeling courses and what not, but surely there’s other opportunities out there, especially when someone else is footing the bill.

    Also, what types of extra tasks should I be asking for around the company that would be looked upon favorably in upcoming interviews? I made it known today that I want to be more involved in the finance side of things and the controller was very receptive to the idea, so I’m hoping some tasks will trickle down to me.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      The only higher level education worth obtaining if you’re still trying to break in are 1) MBA and 2) CFA. Even these should be avoided if possible.

      You can take a financial modeling course but its not going to change your recruiting much. As mentioned many times, Wall Street is extremely risk averse so you’re best to stick with the cookie cutter resume 1) highest ranked target school possible, 2) MBA from highest ranked school possible, 3) high GPA, 4) Relevant work experience, 5) CFA (again note CFA is better for research/asset management/mutual funds etc.)

      No change to the process.

      In terms of work experience Interns usually don’t do much. We have never worked in accounting so we do not know what type of work you’re responsible for. Your best bet is to ask for tasks that surround the following 1) financial modeling and 2) transaction services.

      Take the responsibilities of an IB/ER person and try to mimic them at work. Simply put if the tasks you are performing are not related to a Wall Street job it will not help you much in an interview.

  27. BLB says

    Hi WSP,

    Thanks for all the advice, I find this website very useful. I have been out of school with an undergrad degree in finance/econ and working for 3+ years mostly with economic/statistical analysis at a major financial company. I wanted to see if you have any advice for me on how to make the transition to IB? Since I do have a degree in finance and IB internship experience I assumed that would help me out, but I’m not sure if my job experience will actually cripple me since it’s not directly related to IB. Also, the resume template is very helpful, but it seems that a lot of recruiters recommend a profile/summary at top of the resume. Do you think that would be helpful to highlight the skills/interests directly related to the position or is it not necessary?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      3 years outside of Wall Street is a long time, you should recruit immediately otherwise you may be better off simply obtaining an MBA and going in as an associate. The Wall Street map we’ve posted on here will explain how you’re going to jump around.

      Resume’s are only in 2 formats. One where school is on top (in school currently) and the second where it is on the bottom (in the work force currently).

      Having an objective on your resume would be an immediate red flag and likely thrown out.

  28. max87 says

    Hi Wallstreetplayboys

    Just 2 questions

    1) Just wanna ask how would you go about answering “Why do you have such a low GPA” question to my future interviewers? Personally It was commitments towards my country’s society and soccer (extra curricular) in my first year and second year. I failed to juggle all these activities well enough ended with a final score of 64/100 which is a 2.56 / 4. Frens have told me never to say this to my interviewers as it could lead me to an auto-ding. But what else could i say? Family issues? Sickness/Injuries?

    2) For a guy like me around 26 years old who has not gotten into a serious first relationship before, any key dating advice/tips for me to work/start on ? People tell me that a girl always look out for a guy who is emotionally stable, financially stable and know and how to treat them well enough. Is this true from your personal experience? Does reading sites like askmen.com and david de angelo on a consistent basis helps a lot as well? You can probably infer that i’m at a quarterlife crisis atm lols….

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      1) Yes that is a bad excuse as it seems like you are complaining. Instead focus on something more disheartening such as family issues.
      2) Reading dating blogs is a big waste of time when compared to actually going out and talking to people. If you’re not talking to a new person every single day you don’t want to improve your social skills enough and don’t deserve to see any results. There is enough information on the internet to understand the basics after that, you must do it yourself and take notes on where you can improve.

      Finally, we assume you’re trying to get into Wall St.in your case it makes more sense to get an MBA because the truth is few firms would look at someone who is 26 for a year 1 analyst role.

  29. Thor says

    Career advice? Late 40s, Ivy MBA, but never spent time on the Street. Did Consulting and then worked for a series of start-ups – mostly in sales and BD. Chased pot of gold in start-ups and had no luck. Make very low 6-figures, but want to find area that can bring faster and substantial returns.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      More likely than not your best bet is networking into the industry with your start up contacts. Otherwise your next best shot is a boutique IB.

      • Thor says

        Stick with Sales and BD, or go for Finance with start-ups? I can handle both.
        Best pitch to a boutique?

      • Wall Street Playboys says

        Need more info to help. Get the interviews first, then find out a good spin for them.

  30. cupid says

    what do you think about common law marriage in the state of ny? I have lived with my girlfriend for 4 years and during that time broke up for 6 months and then got back together. We have a child together. I know common law marriage is if you live with your girl for more than 5 years and you break up she gets half because it’s considered common law marriage however I read that in the state of NY this does not apply because it’s not a common law state. Can you clarrify and explain? any advice? thanks.. congrats on a great informative site.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Unfortunately we do not have legal knowledge (and would also not give out legal advice) you would have to find a lawyer in the state of New York.

      As you can imagine we would certainly not recommend entering into a common law marriage either.

  31. Cupid says

    What’s the best way to close a credit card without messing up your credit score? Leave the account open and not use until it closes by itself or just call and claw it?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Simply call and close the account, any time an account closes your score does drop.

      (note your promotions have been removed we do no allow obscure links)

      • cupid says

        After my score drops how can I boost it up ? I have a 724 score and would love to increase it to 750 or 800 like you mentioned before…

      • TWIG says

        What’s the downside to leaving it open? Would leaving it open not help with the average time your credit line has been open? Also, wouldn’t closing a credit account up your credit utilization? Don’t mean to jump in, but after you answered my credit question a couple weeks ago I’ve spent a lot of time reading more about it.

  32. CJ says

    I have about 6 grand in my portfolio right now. All of it is in the energy sector. Given that I will be making roughly 500-600 a month this coming academic year, do you think I should diversify first or just continue to buy more stocks in the companies I’m already invested in?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Simply put, diversify if you’re young and have no niche knowledge to make individual investments and avoid fees. We have written about this in the past but as an example if your transaction fee is $5 then you should not buy shares at $500 level purchases as 1% of your cost is from a single fee. You would want to buy when you have a few thousand dollars saved up.

  33. TWIG says

    I went through the resume review you guys did a while back and completed the full process. There were a few things though that were going to change when the semester starts and I was told to get back with you guys once the semester started. My first interview is a week after the semester begins and I was wondering if someone would still be able to give it a final look over? Thanks!

  34. cupid says

    I want to invest in bonds but don’t know where to start. Any suggestions? also where’s a good place to put your savings in and make money while remaining liquid? I have a money market account however the interest that I earn is too low. Any tips?

  35. cupid says

    so what’s a good way to gain traffic for a website without buying traffic or investing in seo?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      You should talk to an internet marketing specialist, we are not the right resource for traffic.

  36. cupid says

    I had a checking account with apple bank and ended up owing 300 dollars. They kept calling me to collect the money and I never paid it so they closed my checking account. What happens if I never pay the bank back? what are the consequences? they kept calling me saying I have to pay it back asap however I changed my number so I don’t hear from them anymore. What’s the worst that could happen?

    • TWIG says

      I used to work for a bank and we had to run reports on every person that opened an account with us. I think it was OFAC and one other report. Anyways, it listed accounts that had never been paid in full and many times we would refuse to open the account if this situation occurred.

  37. Too much? says

    Okay, my sex life has heated up to a point where I’m getting worried about STDs more than hooking up with a girl. Every now and then, a drunken night will end with unprotected sex in some back room/car/etc. Not too worried about pregnancy since I never finish in the birth-hole.

    Any thoughts on having an awesome sex-life and leaving with nothing but a warm sensation, notch and good memory? What is your strategy in avoiding any STDs/STIs?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      This is entirely up to you. We would not recommend unprotected sex with girls you just met if you’re trying to avoid STDs.

      There is no magic way to avoid STDs, wearing a condom is your best bet. Just don’t get a girl pregnant, that could ruin your life much more than a curable STD.

  38. First-Timer says

    Typically, when would someone use EV/EBITDA vs EV/ EBIT?

    Commonly speaking, EV/EBITDA is more typical, but wouldn’t EBIT be a more accurate proxy for free cash flow?

    • TWIG says

      I believe EV/EBITDA would be a better valuation for REITs and EV/EBITDARent is used in retail and airlines. I’m not sure other than that though what the advantages are.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      If you are using EV/EBITDA it means you’re attempting to proxy cash flow. If you want more precise metrics you need to resort to Free Cash Flow Multiples.

      You use EBIT instead of EBITDA if there is heavy amount of CAPEX/D&A because you can consider it as part of the business. This is much more “high level” so we would recommend simply using EBITDA when CAPEX doesn’t matter. Use Free Cash Flow when CAPEX does matter.

      EBIT multiples are relatively rare.

  39. Tredding by says

    Long time reader , first time poster-

    Currently make $65k + bonus, live in NYC – moving in with a friend rent is 1850 all included given I need to live a frugal life. Is this doable?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Your question is unclear. But we believe you are asking if $1,850 is high for rent and the answer is yes.

      As an investment banking analyst you will not see the sun and you will receive free cabs back home so you should minimize rent expense and live a short cab ride away, which is the vast majority of Manhattan. Your goal is to minimize expenses.

  40. Salsa or Vodka? says

    You guys have mentioned both bartending and teaching dance as a viable side hobby/job in terms of meeting women, having a good time and to smaller extent, supplementing cash flow. Which do you prefer and why?

    I’m thinking of picking up one or the other with the little spare time I have in the weekends, primarily to socialize and meet women, but a little extra cash doesn’t hurt.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Unquestionable answer is bartending.

      To teach salsa you need to spend thousands of dollars to obtain the skillset before you see any real money in your pocket. You will also have more access to girls as a bartender than as a salsa teacher. You will also make money immediately.

      • Salsa or Vodka? says

        Good call. I’m quiting the bar-band and getting a bartending hookup tonight (through a friend who slept with the owner once). I’ll let you know how things pan out!

  41. Z says

    Any advice for a soldier who will finish his service in the Army in about 10 months? I will have served for five years and be 35 when I get out. I have a BA in Economics that I got about ten years ago. However, I don’t have much interest in getting an MBA or working on wall street. I feel like I’m too old to go back to school and delay making money. After being a lowly enlisted soldier working long days, I want to get paid. I do best working on my own.

    What’s the best use for my post-911 GI Bill?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      To be honest we would not know the answer to this question. We do not speak about topics we do not know about and a post-911 GI Bill at age 35 is beyond our wheelhouse.

  42. T says

    I have trouble with daytime sleepiness. I try to make a habit of waking up at 6 AM and going to bed before 12 AM. I thought it was just the fact that I go to class and get bored at lectures that makes me sleepy. But even on days that I get up late, it still happens. Do you have any advice to stop this happen? Any medication to take? This is my senior year so I really don’t want to screw it up.

    I take a look at Provigil and stuff like that but the medication requires prescription and I haven’t gone to doctor for consultation regarding this matter. Besides, the prescribed pills are very expensive for a college student as well. Please help.

    Many Thanks,

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      In order

      1. Get on juicing (fit-juice.com), kale, collards etc.
      2. Yerba Mate (better than coffee cheap)
      3. Exercise

      Excluding prescription meds your best bet is changing your diet.

      • Anonymous says

        Any way to get provigil without prescription? From what you suggest, i think i will try juicing first. Never heard about yerba mate but a quick search results side-effects it may bring. May have to do a bit more research.

  43. Red Stapler says

    Any experience with Nootropics or other cognitive enhancers? Working 60 hours in a technical field and also going to grad school, and my brain is getting rather fatigued at the end of the day and its hard to stay focused, especially under stress.
    Diet currently is mostly salmon, broccoli, Kale, grass-fed beef, brown rice, nutritional yeast, olive oil and coconut oil only, no sugar, no processed foods, breakfast is a frozen berries + quinoa/sprout protein and almond milk shake. I lift three days, run 3 days a week and have a cup of green tea with honey every day. Adderall would be a last resort, since I hear it wears your brain out in the long run.

  44. Rutgers Senior says

    I am senior at Rutgers looking to add any finance experience, paid/unpaid/internship possible to my resume (I have none).
    I applied to every job I qualified for in finance using the school’s Career Development Center. I also applied to every finance internship on Indeed I qualified for. What other resources can I use to send out my resume for positions?

  45. Text Blocked says

    Any tips on texting girls? I’m running into a bit of a block there – meeting, making them laugh and keeping sexual tension and then getting their numbers just fine. The first few texts are usually great, but then running cold. Been happening a lot lately, especially with more attractive women.

  46. Brochacho says

    You mention the use of several drugs to enhance certain aspects of life. Ever use oxycodone? Do you think it’s a drug for the losers or the winners? IMO, it greatly increases motivation & euphoria + kills anxiety…which in return = more work done, positive thoughts for positive outcomes, relaxed around people, happier at work, more social, etc etc.

  47. IB Analyst says

    Hi,
    Can you guys write a post on pre-nuptial agreements for the day we have to propose to our girlfriends in our mid 30s. What are the logistics of it and is it a must in case things go wrong down the line. Are there alternatives to a pre-nup given that the first reaction is one of mistrust from your future spouse.
    Thanks!

  48. ArKar says

    Hey man, i’m in a bit of a bind here. i consider myself to be very bright (not tryina be cocky.) but I’ve never really lived up to my potential mainly cuz I never really put in any effort to anything i did really.

    Well, long story short, graduated from high school at 16. Left home at 17. lost at least 3 years to partying, and being a dumbass. and now i’m 22 going to a super non-target school in california. GPA is 3.0, got like 2 years left but i’m try to finish in 1.5. I know I can get A’s on all the classes this school and I’m going to. That’s gonna bring my GPA to 3.5 at least.

    I have no real hands-on experience in finance although I’ve worked as a bookkeeper for a year. I’m trying to get an internship this fall semester and try to get as many as I can before I graduate. My question is do u think it’s a good idea to get Master’s in Finance from a school like UC Davis, or even UCLA (assuming I can get in with my pathetic GPA) and leverage that to break into wall street? I am also planning to taking CFA by the way. Thanks in advance.

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      You have not stated what your goal is (eg. Hedge Funds, Private Equity, Investment Banking, Equity Research, Sales and Trading, Corp Dev, etc.)

      • ArKars says

        I actually left out a few things. I’m looking into PE actually, I know it’s gonna be really hard to break into considering my situation. BTW, for about six months, I’ve been getting my life in order in terms of health, work, and money. Not sure if that makes a difference but just wanted to point out that I’m not a lazy bum I used to be from 18-21.

        PS: Your blog is really amazing. I just found out about it a few days ago and I’m reading blogs you posted since inception. Thanks for putting this together.

      • Wall Street Playboys says

        Go to UCLA for an MBA in that case (after securing a few years of legitimate work experience – ideally in investment banking). Looking at the website at Davis there is next to no entries into Wall Street from the Masters in finance program. In addition masters in finance is unrelated to investment banking/private equity for the most part.

        Generally speaking:
        MBA = Investment banking/Private Equity
        CFA = Asset Management, Mutual Funds, Equity Research
        Masters in Finance = Niche roles (look at school website)

        (Note: CFA is not needed at all for Investment Banking or Private Equity and won’t help very much in the interview process, it will simply tell them you understand basic finance)

        If you try and do everything all at once with no direction, your resume will likely look odd and will be a red flag to interviewers. Best to choose a path.

  49. Limits says

    How do you approach overreaching your limits/doing too much? Intellectually demanding full-time job, grad school, part time weekend bar gig + some semblance of a social and sex life. Health is already going to shit (I eat great, but haven’t hit the gym in a while, relegated to occasional morning runs and push-ups/chinups), stress levels are getting high. Not sure what needs to go first, sex&hobbies or a potentially great side-gig as a bartender. Thoughts?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      Adjust your lifestyle to save your health. Health > money.

      Sounds like you’ve stretched yourself too thin, curb the gig that is interfering with your sleep/healthy eating patterns. This decision is up to you, but definitely do not trade your health for a few extra notches or a few hundred bucks a month.

  50. Back Office says

    How do you feel about back office roles? (programming etc)
    Do you recommend them in any scenario?

    • Wall Street Playboys says

      If you are forced to take a back office job, emphasis on forced, you should exit between the 1 and 1.5 year marker.

      Not recommended in any scenario, if possible, avoid at all costs.