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The best and worst performing banks to work for in Hong Kong and Singapore this year

Are you looking for an investment banking job in Hong Kong or Singapore? Are you wondering whether the bank you want to join is outperforming the one you’re currently working for?

Dealogic has just released its league table for Asia (ex-Japan) investment banking revenue for the first nine months of 2019 (and we’ve published it below).

The data reveals that bankers at CITIC Securities have enjoyed the best year so far – their firm has taken a 5.6% share of the market, pulled in $395m in revenues, and has jumped one place up the table year-on-year. In doing so, CITIC has displaced Goldman Sachs, which held the top slot this time last year but has now fallen to a comparatively (by GS standards) lowly seventh.

Among Western banks in the Asia IB top-10, Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley have seen their positions rise, while JP Morgan and Citi have held steady compared with last year. Haitong Securities and Guotai Junan Securities are the new entrants to this elite group of revenue generators.

CITIC also leads the pack in Dealogic’s separate Asia debt capital markets (DCM) ranking (a subset of the overall IB one below). The Asia ex-Japan DCM market is now the domain of Chinese banks. China Securities and Haitong Securities finish second and third, respectively, for DCM, while the best-placed global bank is HSBC in seventh.

China is dominating the DCM market across Asia because its debt issuance has soared, and Chinese banks have cashed-in as a result. But while Chinese banks have long undercut the underwriting fees of Western banks, they are now taking the practice to a whole new level as the market becomes increasingly competitive. The average charge for selling Chinese corporate bonds in 2007 was typically 1% or more of the deal size, according to Bloomberg. Last year it dropped to just 0.44%, and many deals paid 0.1% or less.

Perhaps even more ominously for international banks, Chinese firms have recently risen up the ranks in equity capital markets (ECM) in Asia ex-Japan. CITIC is the number-one bank in the region for ECM, while China Securities (fifth), CICC (sixth), Guotai Junan Securities (eighth) and Huatai Securities (ninth) also make Dealogic’s top-10 for January-to-September revenue. Morgan Stanley is second, while Goldman Sachs places third (but it was first 12 months ago).

If you work in Asia (ex-Japan) M&A, however, chances are that you’ll still want to be based at a global firm. Of the Chinese institutions, only China Renaissance makes the top-10 banks – and it’s in tenth position. “Chinese banks are losing out on cross-border M&A deals to international banks, which have better global networks and industry expertise,” Stanley Soh, a Hong Kong-based director of Asian financial services solutions, told us previously.

Credit Suisse, JP Morgan and Citi (in that order) are the top M&A banks in Asia so far this year. Evercore (eighth) and HSBC (ninth) are the newcomers, having missed out on a top-10 slot this time last year.

Image credit: Arisa Chattasa, Unsplash

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AUTHORSimon Mortlock Content Manager

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