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How portable is Banking & Finance work? Capital Markets?

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2015 2:29 pm
by Anonymous User
I'm at a biglaw firm that does really high level, complex work in cap markets and bank finance. I've got to pick a practice group soon between the two. I doubt I'll be making partner or anything, so I'll probably end up heading back to a much smaller market in my home state. Between the two, which specialization is the most portable to a smaller market? Why?

Re: How portable is Banking & Finance work? Capital Markets?

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2015 3:03 pm
by UpandDown97
Anonymous User wrote:I'm at a biglaw firm that does really high level, complex work in cap markets and bank finance. I've got to pick a practice group soon between the two. I doubt I'll be making partner or anything, so I'll probably end up heading back to a much smaller market in my home state. Between the two, which specialization is the most portable to a smaller market? Why?


Probably cap market cause that's everywhere whereas banking works tend to be concentrated in a few cities (NYC, North Carolina, DC maybe).

Re: How portable is Banking & Finance work? Capital Markets?

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2015 4:50 pm
by Anonymous User
UpandDown97 wrote:Probably cap market cause that's everywhere whereas banking works tend to be concentrated in a few cities (NYC, North Carolina, DC maybe).

Huh, I thought is was the opposite. There are banks making loans everywhere aren't there?

Re: How portable is Banking & Finance work? Capital Markets?

Posted: Sat Jun 13, 2015 5:59 pm
by UpandDown97
Anonymous User wrote:
UpandDown97 wrote:Probably cap market cause that's everywhere whereas banking works tend to be concentrated in a few cities (NYC, North Carolina, DC maybe).

Huh, I thought is was the opposite. There are banks making loans everywhere aren't there?


This is educated guesswork: there are not a lot of independent banks (except maybe in the Midwest and Texas). As such, leaves only the big banks. I assume that the big banks contract out to probably one, maybe two big firms in each state.

Capital markets, on the other hand, have probably different laws and regulations in each state (more so than banking). In each state too there is a market for the wealthy with local advisors, brokers, etc. These are the people that give you work.

Re: How portable is Banking & Finance work? Capital Markets?

Posted: Mon Jun 15, 2015 9:26 am
by Anonymous User
SMH. Giving advice about something you know nothing about is worse than giving no advice as all!

OP - if you're going to move back home to your small market, then you should figure out what transactional lawyers in your home market do. Go onto Chambers, ID the top firms in your home town and click around their websites. Generally speaking, the smaller the market the more of a jack-of-all-trades the transactional lawyers are, so my concern with either of those practices would be that you can get a little bit hyperspecialized at an early stage, which means when you go home you'll be asking folks to hire you on potential rather than developed skill (i.e., being a ninja at negotiating baskets and financial definitions is nice enough, but is not the skillset you need to be a successful lawyer in Des Moines).

There is definitely cap markets work in satellite markets - someone needs to help the local businesses with their periodic reporting and such - but I think it's quite focused in the big cities. While the poster above is correct that lender-side, big $$ bank work is focused in a few cities, (a) that's lender-side, not borrower-side, which is more diverse and (b) in the middle-market, lending is much more spread out, especially for things like real estate, and understanding secured lending ports pretty well over to a real estate finance practice which every city has.

So I would lean bank finance, but just make sure that you're focused on developing the skills that YOU need for your planned career path, rather than blindly accepting what the firm gives you.

Re: How portable is Banking & Finance work? Capital Markets?

Posted: Mon Jun 15, 2015 11:30 pm
by threecharacters
Banking and Finance will be much more useful than Cap Markets. I worked in commercial lending for a regional bank prior to going to law school and we had a number of firms on retainer to represent us as lender's counsel in a transaction (basically any real estate deal over $1MM or any unsecured deal over $5MM required outside counsel). Everything from real estate, government contracts, to securities lending. It's a pretty diverse practice and for a smaller market would be much more useful than knowing the ins and outs of federal securities laws.