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Investment bank Evercore to pay new bankers to delay hiring start date

BOSTON (Reuters) - Investment bank Evercore Partners is taking an unusual step and telling its incoming analysts that it will pay them as much as $25,000 if they postpone their start date until the middle of next year, according to people familiar with the matter.

The New York-headquartered bank has reached out to dozens of recent college graduates who received offers to join the first-year investment banking analyst class in a few weeks to inform them about the offers, one of the people said.

Evercore is proposing two options: postpone the start date until January 2021 and receive a payment of $15,000 or wait a full year and start in July 2021 and be paid $25,000, one of the sources said.

The bank declined to comment.

The Wall Street Journal first reported the news.

The offer, which is said to be the first of its kind where a Wall Street bank is offering cash for people to stay away for a while, comes as much of Wall Street has been working from home to help stop the spread of the deadly coronavirus outbreak.

It also comes at a time when U.S. unemployment claims have surged past 40 million during the pandemic and many big employers ranging from Boeing to Uber Technologies are cutting their workforces as the country braces for a deep recession.

Evercore traditionally hires roughly 90 recent college graduates to join its multi-year training program. The base salary is said to be around $85,000 with the chance to make another $50,000 to $85,000 in bonus in the following year, one of the sources said.

One of the people who was set to start is now considering taking the offer to take time for travel, pursue hobbies, and think about life after Wall Street even before life on Wall Street can officially begin, according to an email seen by Reuters.

Wall Street’s training programs are rigorous, giving the junior bankers a foundation in financial analysis while logging long hours in the office. Evercore along with Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley is a particularly desirable place to work.

Reasons for the delay could range from an expected decline in business like mergers to wanting to provide better training for the class of analysts when people begin returning to the office, said Anthony Keizner, a partner at search firm Odyssey Search Partners. “But the summer boat cruises and the drinks with the trading floor are clearly not going to happen.”

Reporting by Svea Herbst-Bayliss; Editing by Leslie Adler

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