Will Goldman Sachs Scandal Cause Millennials to Abandon Wall Street?

How will former Goldman Sachs executive director Greg Smith's op-ed impact Wall Street banks' ability to recruit college seniors?

Today, New York Times writer Kevin Roose makes the case that Smith's resignation letter on the newspaper's op-ed page further tarnishes the industry's reputation and will harm Wall Street's ability to attract top college grads.

In Smith's op-ed, he says he came to the realization that it was time to leave the firm when trying to recruit students to join the firm. "I knew it was time to leave when I realized I could no longer look students in the eye and tell them what a great place this was to work."

Roose reports that financial institutions should be worried that the incident might scare off college and business school students. He writes: 

"College students who were once attracted to prestigious banks like moths to bonfires are increasingly turning to other industries in search of success. Insiders say that harsh testimonials of industry life can deter would-be financiers from even applying for jobs at the most selective firms."

Roose also writes that the economic crisis has negatively impacted the appeal of finance jobs: 

"Smaller paychecks and waves of layoffs are only making the decision easier for some students, who no longer view Wall Street as a fast track to seven-figure salaries. Last year, flagging profits at many financial firms reduced some bankers’ compensation from stratospheric to merely generous. At Morgan Stanley, cash bonuses were capped at $125,000; annual cash payments for some Goldman employees were cut in half."

Data shows that 28 percent of Harvard's seniors went into finance in 2008, while the number fell to 17 percent last year.

Join the debate: Have Wall Street jobs lost their appeal for millennials? If so, why? (Economic crisis, Occupy Wall Street, tech boom, etc.)

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