Discover your dream Career
For Recruiters

Morning Coffee: Goldman Sachs; former female partner reappears in a “real job”. (Male) bankers are sexy once again

As the baseball star Ichiro Suzuki once said, “If I ever saw myself saying I'm excited going to Cleveland, I'd punch myself in the face, because I'm lying”.  That’s a slightly overstated view of the attractions of America’s 33rd biggest city. And it seems that it’s one that former Goldman Sachs treasurer Beth Hammack doesn’t share.  After saying in February that she was “excited” about the next step in her career, Hammack is off to Cleveland to become the President and CEO of its regional Federal Reserve Bank. 

Get Morning Coffee  in your inbox. Sign up here. 

The Cleveland Fed is perhaps not the most prestigious job in the Federal Reserve System – the banks were set up according to which cities were most important in the 19th century rather than now.  It’s quite small in terms of the population covered (17 million, compared to 26 million for the New York Fed and a massive 69 million in the San Francisco district).  And Cleveland isn’t a big financial centre; it’s probably more famous for professional sports these days than anything else.

But as a Goldman veteran, Hammack will understand that the job is what you make it.  Her fellow former Goldmanite, Neel Kashkari, maintains a very high profile in the markets from the even smaller Fed in Minneapolis (only 14 million people in its district).  And she clearly outranks him in Goldman terms – Kashkari was only ever a Vice President, while Hammack was not only a Partner, she was a member of the highly prestigious (and occasionally troublesome) Goldman Sachs management committee.

Having left one influential and sometimes argumentative committee, Hammack will be going straight on to another when she joins the Cleveland Fed in August – the bank shares a seat in alternation with the Chicago Fed on the Federal Open Markets Committee, and it’s Cleveland’s turn this year, so she will immediately be involved in setting interest rates.

This move from a macro trading background to one of the most important macro policy positions in the world is likely to have triggered all sorts of compliance and conflict of interest policies.  However, it might be rather welcome in the Hammack household, as historically these issues have tended to involve accelerated vesting of your deferred stock-based compensation if you leave Goldman Sachs to become embroiled in them. This accelerated vesting is a good reason to join “Government Sachs” after a big Goldman job, but it’s still likely that both sides will regard Hammack’s experience of US rates markets from the other side of the trade as a key advantage.

Having once been considered a C-Suite candidate at Goldman, one of the highest-flying women in American finance is therefore moving into a role that one former colleague, who also left in the last year described to us as “a real job”. It might beat becoming a macro hedge fund manager now. Let’s hope she never ends up punching herself in the face.

Elsewhere in this crazy world, younger bankers may not believe this, but once upon a time, their choice of career was considered a desirable quality on the dating scene.  Nightclub promoters used to host “fashion meets finance” evenings giving models the opportunity to meet junior hedge fund bros and, almost unaccountably, they sometimes showed up. Then the financial crisis happened and bankers became the most hated members of society, and that’s been how it is for years.  One of the most realistic things about the TV series “Industry” is that the young bankers only ever date each other.

Is this about to change?  Vogue has noted the latest TikTok craze about “looking for a man in finance” and suggests it’s sparked a revival in all bankers’ dating prospects, whether they are 6”5 and have a trust fund or not. 

It's good news for bankers on hinge.  Although popularity on dating apps, means you may become even more resentful of having to work all night on Powerpoint slides.

Meanwhile …

It doesn’t look like the Wells Fargo hiring spree is going to go into reverse any time soon: CEO Charles Scharf has referred to underwriting and capital markets business as “an opportunity staring us in the face”, given the amount of lending business WF does without any other ways of monetising its client relationships. (Bloomberg)

What do you get if you employ the design experts at FT Alphaville to come up with the perfect sell side note format?  The answer is apparently “a sell side note that looks more or less exactly like all the rest, because there’s only so many ways to achieve the specific purpose”. (FT Alphaville)

An absolutely nightmarish story – Angelo Proni, the CEO of MTS, noticed that a colleague was about to jump off the roof of the building they worked at, but couldn’t reach him in time to stop him.  Now, in order to try and rescue something from a traumatic experience, he’s promoting a mental health campaign. (Financial News)

If you’re wondering where the interns are this summer, this may be part of the explanation; Starbucks has been cutting back staffing, which is leading to queues as long as forty minutes in some busy financial centre locations at rush hours. (Bloomberg)

A former M&A banker at TD Bank started video gaming with his brother during the pandemic, then started building his own gaming computers, then realised he enjoyed doing things with his hands more than he liked doing deals.  One thing led to another and now he owns a building company. (Globe and Mail)

PwC is apparently spending an undisclosed sum of money to become the largest enterprise customer of ChatGPT, and its US employees have logged over 360,000 hours on generative AI activities.  That would be a lot of limericks about VLOOKUP(), so there must presumably be some actual valuable work for clients in there as well. (WSJ)

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: +44 7537 182250 (SMS, Whatsapp or voicemail). Telegram: @SarahButcher. Click here to fill in our anonymous form, or email editortips@efinancialcareers.com. Signal also available.

Bear with us if you leave a comment at the bottom of this article: all our comments are moderated by human beings. Sometimes these humans might be asleep, or away from their desks, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. Eventually it will – unless it’s offensive or libelous (in which case it won’t.)

author-card-avatar
AUTHORDaniel Davies Insider Comment

Sign up to Morning Coffee!

Coffee mug

The essential daily roundup of news and analysis read by everyone from senior bankers and traders to new recruits.

Boost your career

Find thousands of job opportunities by signing up to eFinancialCareers today.
Recommended Articles
Recommended Jobs
Deutsche Bank
Trader - Vice President
Deutsche Bank
New York, United States
Barings
Associate Director, Private Credit
Barings
London, United Kingdom
Man Group plc
Quantitative Researcher - Core Strategies
Man Group plc
London, United Kingdom
OTS Capital
Python Data Scientist (Quantitative Finance)
OTS Capital
London, United Kingdom

Sign up to Morning Coffee!

Coffee mug

The essential daily roundup of news and analysis read by everyone from senior bankers and traders to new recruits.