Can you answer banks' most unusual interview questions?
Alright. You know how banks recruit, right?
Well, then you probably know that interviews at banks are difficult. Each big bank has its own recruitment system and interview questions, although there is a lot of overlap, which means that preparing for, say, an interview at Citi is different to JPMorgan or Goldman Sachs. Or a hedge fund.
Either way, don’t expect questions to all be easy. A lot of them can be easily prepared for – there are only so many ways you can be asked to walk through your CV – and there’s no anecdote in the world that the S.T.A.R. technique can’t instantly enliven.
That is not, however, all that you will be asked about. You’ll probably get technical questions – you know, what’s a discounted cash flow, that sort of thing. If you’ve been keeping on top of your finance classes, these should be pretty straight forward.
You might be asked a brainteaser. These are pretty fun questions to debate with a friend (or two) over a drink (or two), but when half your body weight is currently sitting on your forehead in the form of sweat, they’re not so fun. You have to think on your feet – but even if you don’t give an exact (or correct) answer, it’s your methodology that’s being tested.
Investment banking interview brainteasers:
How many lightbulbs are there in America? (Morgan Stanley)
If you were an animal, which would you be? (Citi)
How many tennis balls could fit into a 747? (Evercore)
How many trips are there on the London Underground on a given day? (Lazard)
Name someone with integrity. (Lazard)
What is the meaning of independence and why is it important? (Lazard)
How many windows in the Empire State Building? (Lazard)
How many lightbulbs are there in New York? (Barclays)
How would you calculate the number of ants in the UK? (Barclays)
How many pigs fit in a sled? Explain your thought process. (Barclays)
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