Magazine article American Banker

Bank Sales Reps' Pay Jumped 24% in Two Years

Magazine article American Banker

Bank Sales Reps' Pay Jumped 24% in Two Years

Article excerpt

Bank investment representatives' pay is climbing as banks structure more attractive pay packages to compete with nonbank brokerages.

The rising pay levels are detailed in a just-released survey of 1,905 bank investment reps by the Bank Insurance Market Research Group, Mamaroneck, N.Y.

The survey found that their median pay last year was $68,000, up 24% from 1994, the last time the survey was conducted. The average compensation last year was $70,673, up 16% from 1994.

Furthermore, it looks like more bank investment reps are cracking the six-digit salary mark. Thirty-one percent of those surveyed earned $100,000 or more, up from 11% in 1994 and 16% in 1992.

While some of the increase can be attributed to the bull market, another large factor is that banks are restructuring their compensation packages to compete better with wire houses and regional broker-dealers, said Andrew Singer, the author of the study.

"I'd say some banks see their competition not necessarily as the bank down the street but also the brokerage firm down the street," he said.

Paul Werlin, president of Human Capital Resources, an executive recruiting firm in St. Petersburg, Fla., said that nonbank brokers are probably seeing their overall pay increase at about the same rate as bank employees, based on gross sales. But banks are doing more now to lure and keep sales talent.

"I'm seeing a desire by banks to reward and retain top people," he said. "So payouts to brokers are increasing at the high end."

A few are offering deferred compensation and stock options, as wire houses have for years, he said. But more are taking the simpler step of increasing the percent of gross sales their brokers take in commission.

Here's how that works. Most banks pay their sales specialists on a sliding commission scale based on monthly production. …

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