Top 1% by age 25

"The implication is that by the time you reach your late 20s on Wall Street, most people around you will be in the 1% of highest earners in the country. You’re in a bubble. Maybe this is no big deal – but it’s worth being aware of, particularly when you’re thinking of leaving the industry and wondering what to do next. Most people earn a lot less.

Over my career as an executive recruiter focused on Wall Street, I don't believe I once saw a successful banker or analyst leave the industry altogether to pursue other interests/careers where less money would be earned.  Odds are that most bankers will never decide to teach high school English later in life when by age 30 they are barely managing to save a penny even while earning 250k+ a year.   Most individuals, even after just a couple of years of working 70-80 hour work weeks, have created lifestyles that place no substantial amount of thought on spending habits.  After all, good performers expect to make more money in total compensation with each passing year, and many do.  These spending habits are almost always as reckless as the working hours spent in the office are obsessive.  Of course, these habits are all by choice and in reality these brilliant young minds on Wall Street don't really believe that money can buy happiness right?  -Ed Storm