How much do bankers in Europe actually make?

The European Banking Authority (EBA) recently published their report on industry compensation in Europe in 2013, and it makes for enlightening reading, with detail about the number of bankers who earned more than €1 million, in combined salary and bonus.

The European Banking Authority (EBA) recently published their report on industry compensation in Europe in 2013, and it makes for enlightening reading, with detail about the number of bankers who earned more than €1 million, in combined salary and bonus.


We dug through the numbers and learned:


1) In total, 3,178 bankers in Europe earned more than €1 million in 2013, of which 2,086 were in the UK and 397 in Germany.

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2) Across Europe, compensation above €1 million was paid to 0.12% of all staff, with the highest percentage 0.49% in the UK, followed by 0.13% in Ireland.

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3) Earnings above €2 million become even more rarified, as this chart shows how many people (UK only) were paid in each bracket above €1 million.

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4) The majority of earners above €1 million worked in the Investment Banking division (57%), followed by Firm Management (15%) then Asset Management (10%).

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5) Lastly, we looked at average compensation among earners above €1 million, by division, and broken out between base salary and bonus. Overall, if you are in the top 0.1% of the European banking industry, you are making on average €450,000 base + €1.4m bonus.

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As is well known, Banking is an industry where it is possible to earn very large amounts of money. However, we were surprised that only the top 0.1% of staff, about 3,000 people across the whole European industry, make it above €1 million. Considering this is all Pre-tax and the hours and intensity of the work is well known, this may not be the picture that banks want ambitious graduates knowing when they decide where to work.


As more data comes out about the realities of the risk/return, input/output landscape in different sectors, professionals at all levels should be able to make even more informed decisions about the best path for them, and we are big fans of that.

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