The interns getting paid $168 an hour

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Interns at Wall Street firms are getting bigger pay cheques this year, as the finance industry seeks to attract more young people disillusioned by layoffs in tech.

For finance jobs across the US, median intern pay jumped 19 per cent at 16 top firms studied by, which analyses compensation data submitted by users. The bump was even higher at hedge funds and prop-trading firms, where hourly pay surged 29 per cent year-over-year to $US111 ($168), or $US4400 before taxes for a 40-hour week, according to the company.

There is plenty of money sloshing around on Wall Street for top talent.Credit: Bloomberg

At Citadel and Citadel Securities, the median wage for interns jumped roughly 25 per cent to $US120 an hour this year. For a standard month with 40-hour weeks that’s $US19,200 before taxes. Not shockingly, the bigger pay cheques got the attention of job seekers: Ken Griffin’s firms received more than 69,000 applications for their 2023 internship program, a more than 65 per cent increase year-over-year, according to a spokesperson.

“As students have become more informed about career choices in general – and the unique opportunities our internships provide for learning, growth, and impact – they have determined that Citadel and Citadel Securities are the best places to start a career at the intersection of tech and finance,” Matt Mitro, the firm’s head of campus recruiting, said in statement.

While big banks reduced bonuses this year, and continue to trim jobs, there is plenty of money sloshing around on Wall Street for top talent. And some finance companies are paying interns more as they try to get young people in the door at a time when many ambitious college students are disillusioned by the layoffs that have hammered the tech industry.

Boosting pay is also a way finance firms with return-to-office policies are luring talent in an era when working remotely has become a popular perk, said Zaheer Mohiuddin, the CEO of

Wall Street firms are paying big dollars to attract recruits from other industries. Credit: Bloomberg

Intern pay can vary by role, education, the type of firm and other factors. At Barclays, summer investment banking interns in the US are offered an annualised rate of $US110,000, while the pay at Citigroup is $US50 an hour.

Bank of America offers a median hourly rate for interns nationwide of $US41 per hour while those willing to move to the Big Apple for the summer earn a premium at $US46. And there’s higher pay for investment banking interns. They can be paid at an annualised rate of $US110,000, according to a spokesperson.

Many finance interns get other benefits, including sign-on bonuses, living stipends and access to corporate housing, with offers today now looking similar to full-time employees. Barclays saw its application volumes increase year-over-year, according to Mei Zhou, the global head of programmatic recruiting.

“Despite recent market conditions, appetite for banking opportunities at Barclays remains strong,” said Zhou. “This is a sign, in our view, that students are prioritising long-term opportunities and stability.”


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