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In which jobs will you earn the highest base salaries in Hong Kong banking? And how much will you actually get paid when you reach the senior ranks in these roles? To find out, we averaged out director (i.e. people with 10 years’ experience or more) pay figures across salary surveys from four recruitment agencies in Hong Kong. We then eliminated jobs with an annual salary of less than HK$2m (US$255k) to produce the table below. We used the maximum figures from each firm’s director-level pay range, so the salaries listed are for top performers. While the 11 functions in our $2m table are all in the front-office, there is now surprisingly little difference between them when it comes to senior pay. Interestingly, the table-topping investment bankers in ECM, DCM and M&A now only earn 9% more in base pay than their private banking counterparts at director level in Hong Kong. Demand for relationships...

Mandarin is fast becoming a lingua franca in Hong Kong’s finance sector. Candidates who can only speak English and/or Cantonese are being frozen out of much of the job market. But in which job functions within financial services is Mandarin most sought after? To find out, we looked at 18 key job sectors in the eFinancialCareers CV database and worked out the proportion of Hong Kong-based candidates in each one who speak Mandarin fluently (as a first or additional language). The results are in the table below. You are increasingly unlikely to get a client-facing finance job in Hong Kong unless you know Mandarin. For example, as investment bankers focus on helping expansionist mainland companies make overseas acquisitions, 76% of Hong Kong-based M&A professionals on our database are fluent in Mandarin. Junior IBD analysts we spoke with previously at global banks in Hong Kong anecdotally put the percentage of Mandarin speakers among new graduate intakes at up to 80%....

Banking professionals in Asia are increasingly receiving job offers from their former managers as a quick way of adding headcount in talent-short sectors like private banking. In one of the more high-profile examples in recent years, several Barclays bankers in Hong Kong followed ex-manager Didier Von Daeniken to Standard Chartered, where he now heads up private banking. But while it’s flattering to be asked to shift banks with your boss, recruiters we spoke with in Asia say many bankers are better off staying put. Here’s what to weigh up before you decide Treat it just like a job interview “Don’t jeopardise you career due to the ego boost of being asked to join your boss,” advises Henry Chamberlain, a Hong Kong management consultant and former head of selection at Standard Chartered. “Moving for this reason would be like taking a new job without going to the interview. Treat it as any other job change and...