Last year was a once in a decade (if not a lifetime) year for investment banks. Revenues soared, returns to shareholders went through the roof, and a lot of people in the industry had enormous paydays.
But graduate recruitment? At three big European banks, at least, that seems to have stayed the same.
UBS, Barclays and HSBC have all now released their annual reports for 2021. The reports specify how many students each bank hired last year. None increased their graduate intakes.
At UBS, 1,700 graduate trainees, apprentices and interns were hired in 2021, which was the same as both 2020 and 2019. At Barclays, graduate hiring was cut from 961 in 2020 to just 851 in 2021. At HSBC, graduate hiring remained steady, at 650 people.
It's not clear yet whether other banks hiked graduate intakes last year, but the implication is that even while banks' profits and revenues soared, graduate jobs in banking remained as hard to get into as ever.
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