20 May 2020

GSOM alumni and students discussed the state of investment banking during the pandemic

On May 16, 2020, the Investment banking: Spring’20 Update online conference was held at the Graduate School of Management at St. Petersburg University (GSOM), at which GSOM alumni working in the field of investment banking discussed the changes caused by the pandemic in banks of Russia and Europe.


The conference was the second GSOM IB Club meeting, organized as part of the Talent Up! program.


The speakers considered that the "recipe for success" for a novice banker did not change during the pandemic. As in the period of active economic growth, in the current difficult situation, the main component of success is an internal understanding of the changes. This understanding is based on a strong theoretical base and on the habit of constantly monitoring significant events in the economies of different countries, the ability to respond quickly, critically examining various alternatives and, most importantly, forming a personal opinion about the situation.


Over the past couple of months, unprecedented events in the markets have been observed: the strongest decline in US stock indices that have not been observed since the Great Depression, negative oil futures prices, large-scale government support programs for the economy. Only an informed and logically sound approach can become a navigation map that helps to find the path to achieving goals, despite the storms in the economy.


To determine this path, during the meeting, the speakers discussed changes in the work of banks in recent months, tried to analyze the macroeconomic situation and examine separately the state of various market sectors.


Regarding job search in the field of investment banking, alumni agreed that despite the suspension of the recruitment of young employees by some banks and funds, the work intensity increased briefly. And it is a sure sign that career opportunities will again be open to the most powerful candidates. “During the crisis, as usual, the strongest will survive, while the weaker ones will absorb all the losses” —  said Anna Sivkova.


In order to prepare for internships, in addition to studying materials on corporate finance, speakers advised not to forget about networking. Despite the inability to meet in person, students can expand useful contacts through online communication with GSOM alumni working in various cities in Russia and abroad in the field of finance. 


GSOM IB Club is a new community of GSOM alumni working in investment corporate banks and private equity funds, and students who want to build a career in investment banking. The club’s mission is to create a space for the exchange of experience and the development of students' practical skills and knowledge in the field of banking.


The speakers of the meeting were


Anna Sivkova

TalentUp! mentor, a GSOM alumna of 2014, Senior Associate, Structuring Department, VTB Capital, Moscow


Bachelor program alumnus of 2015, Analyst, Exotic Rates Derivatives Trader, Deutsche Bank AG, Germany



Analyst, Investment Banking Department, HSBC, UK



MIM alumnus of 2017, Associate, Accent Capital, Moscow


Bachelor program alumnus of 2015, M&A Analyst, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, UK