by Brian DeChesare Comments (523)

Can You Renege On Your Investment Banking Job Offer Without Being Blacklisted for Life?

Interview season is finished.

You got 30 first round interviews, made it to 5 Superdays, and came away with an offer at a middle-market bank – which you quickly accepted.

But 5 minutes ago, you just received a call from your recruiter at a bulge-bracket bank: “another spot opened up” and they’re extending a summer internship offer to you.

So you renege on the middle-market offer and go to the better bank, right?

Should You Renege?

If you look around online and ask your friends, you’ll see that there’s no consensus on the “ethics” of reneging and whether you should do it.

There are 2 main schools of thought:

#1: Bankers Are Vengeful and Want to Kill You

This one is more common among senior bankers who spend time recruiting you – they’ve seen cases where someone reneges on an offer and then ends up losing his other offer(s) as a result of angry phone calls from bankers.

The industry is very small, everyone knows each other, and any banker can quickly find out about your move if he wanted to do so.

They would also point out that the upside when reneging is usually much less than you expect.

#2: The Labor Market Works Both Ways – Look Out for Yourself

In camp #2 are many current Analysts and Associates, who point out that everyone is replaceable and that banks have a habit of rescinding or downgrading offers without notice.

The world’s not a nice place, and you have to do what it takes to get ahead – if you get a better offer, you need to accept it and renege on the other one because no one else is looking out for you.

They would point out that in a week from now, no one will even remember what you did.

So, Who’s Right?

Neither side is “right” or “wrong” here because reneging on job offers can go either way.

But my own view is this: the potential downside of reneging on a job offer usually far outweighs the potential upside.

So there are some cases where it might make sense to renege – but most of the time, you’re taking a big risk by doing so.

The Potential Upside

It’s the same as when you move from one bank to a “better” one: you may get a better experience, more deal/client exposure, and better access to recruiters.

This upside is significantly better if you’re reneging on an offer in a different industry (e.g., Big 4 accounting) or you’re reneging on a back office offer and moving to the front office.

The upside is also much better if you’re reneging on one full-time offer and taking another one – you’ll probably be there for at least a year or two, whereas with internships there are no guarantees.

The Potential Downside

The worst-case scenario: your would-have-been-employer calls around and finds out where you accepted, then they notify that bank and you instantly lose both your offers.

Oh, and of course you won’t be able to recruit again at the bank you reneged on.

If you relied on on-campus recruiting and the bank you reneged on notifies your school (they will), they may cut off your access to the alumni network, on-campus recruiting, and anything else career-related.

Which is especially bad news if you’re reneging on a summer internship offer and taking another one.

The Blacklist?

So what about the legendary “Blacklist” that banks maintain to tell them who reneged on offers?

Individual banks may have such a list, but rumors about a universal list are heavily exaggerated.

It’s not because bankers are “nice” or because they “forgive” you – it’s because banks and HR departments tend to be poorly organized.

There is some risk of reneging on an offer following you around for awhile but most of the potential downside will be in the near-term.

Will Any of This Happen to You?

That’s the fun part about reneging on an offer: you have no way of knowing.

Maybe you’ll tell a VP when he’s already having a bad day, and he’ll take out his anger on you; or maybe you’ll catch an MD in a good mood and he won’t sink your career with a few phone calls.

The risk of bad things happening is reduced if you’re reneging on an offer in a different industry or from a significantly different firm (e.g. tiny 2-person boutique vs. bulge bracket).

But there’s always some risk, no matter what type of move you’re making.

When NOT to Renege

Since the downside is so high and so difficult to predict, there are many cases where reneging makes no sense:

  • Bulge Bracket to Bulge Bracket – This is just stupid, even if one is “more prestigious.”
  • Middle Market / Boutique to Middle Market / Boutique – See above.
  • Internship Offers – Bad idea because you’re not guaranteed a full-time offer and you could be destroying your FT recruiting chances.
  • Larger Firm to Smaller Firm – This really makes no sense and will make you look silly to everyone involved.

When You Might Consider Reneging

There are some cases where it makes more sense:

  • Boutique / Middle Market to Bulge Bracket – This one is actually still quite risky, especially if they’re in the same location – but it does make more sense than the other possibilities above.
  • Completely Different Industry to Banking – There’s a big step-up if you’re going from Big 4 accounting to a bulge bracket bank, and not as many people know each other across industries.
  • Back Office to Front Office: This one can be risky as well, but moving from IT to PE or IB is another big step up and it’s hard to make the move otherwise.

None of these is a “slam dunk” – each one is still risky, but they’re at least worth considering.

How to Do It

So you’ve decided to renege on your offer – how do you do it, when do you do it, who do you tell, and what do you say?

How to Say It

Keep it very brief and to the point – you’ve received an exciting opportunity elsewhere and have to take it or you’d be kicking yourself later.

Don’t lie, but don’t tell the whole truth either.

Do not tell them where you’ve accepted the other offer – if they ask, just say the industry it’s in (“finance”) and maybe the location.

If you’re really accepting an offer elsewhere, don’t lie and say you’re reneging for “personal reasons” – that will come back and make you look even worse.

Use the phone rather than email – email is just too impersonal and at least if you call, you may not completely burn your bridges.

You want to do this as soon as possible rather than waiting until 2 weeks before you start, unless you really want to make enemies.

Who to Tell

At the minimum, call the recruiter at the firm you’re reneging on and maybe speak briefly with other bankers you interviewed with there.

There’s no reason to tell your school or to tell all your friends – this is not something you want to openly advertise.

Should you tell the firm you’re accepting the offer with that you reneged elsewhere?

My view is that you should never accept an offer or even start interviewing without telling a firm you have accepted an offer elsewhere first.

This just reduces the potential downside: some firms will get really, really angry if they find out you reneged elsewhere, while other places don’t care.

But as long as they know what you’ve done before they give you an offer or before they even start interviewing you, there isn’t much to be angry about.

Special Cases

There are a few special cases here worth addressing:

Deferred or “Downgraded” Offers

Is it “better” if you renege on a deferred offer (e.g. you start 2 years from now rather than next year) or a downgraded offer (you interviewed for the front office but were transferred to the back office)?

No, not really, because most of the downside is in the near-term.

The risk may be slightly reduced here, but it’s not that much different.

Cultural Differences

The advice above applies to recruiting practices in the US, but not every country in the world does it the same way.

In some regions it’s more common to go around interviewing even when you have offers lined up or accepted.

So you need to ask people at your school and anyone you know in the industry and see what common practice is where you live.

Actual Personal Reasons

Maybe you have actual, legitimate personal or family circumstances that have led you into reneging on an offer… they can’t get annoyed at that, right?

No, sorry – once again it doesn’t matter what your reasoning is.

But in this case you do have another option: instead of reneging on the offer, just push for a deferred offer instead. That lets you keep your hard-earned offer and keeps you from burning bridges.

Banking to Completely Different Industry

If you decide to join the Peace Corps at the last-minute, no banker will call the organization to sink your career and prevent you from saving the world.

In this case it’s less about ruining your entire career and more about limiting your options if you ever want to go back into finance in the future.

To Renege?

The problem with reneging on an offer is that the downside outweighs the upside and there’s no way you can predict how bad the downside will be.

There are some cases where it makes sense to consider, but 90% of the email I get on this topic is of the “Should I renege on my offer at one bulge bracket to move to another one?” variety, and that just doesn’t make sense.

So if you have a dramatically better offer and you need to renege to accept it, proceed with caution.

But don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Want more?

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About the Author

Brian DeChesare is the Founder of Mergers & Inquisitions and Breaking Into Wall Street. In his spare time, he enjoys lifting weights, running, traveling, obsessively watching TV shows, and defeating Sauron.

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  1. Hi Brian,

    I interviewed with a large MM bank and received a lateral analyst offer after just one ~30 minute interview with 3 members of the team (2 directors and 1 VP). For context, I do have around 1.5 years of solid, relevant experience at pretty reputable firms and this MM bank isn’t exactly top-tier (or anywhere close to that) by any means.

    Given how “easy” it was to get this offer, is that a red flag? Should I decline the offer based on “how easy it was to get the offer”?


    1. It sounds very strange, yes. Lateral recruiting is normally a more extended process. So I would probably ask for more information here first and just ask them why they didn’t have more of a recruiting process.

      1. Thanks for sharing your perspectives and opinions on this, Brian. Do you think this is a big enough red flag that I should decline the offer? Given the ease of getting the offer, do you think that the ease of getting the offer may signal certain negatives about the bank / offer (e.g., hire and then fire shortly after)?

        1. I would just ask for more information about their normal process. Unless this firm is a huge step up in some way, it’s probably not worth the risk of accepting the offer.

  2. Thanks for the insightful article, Brian! Wanted to reach out and would love to be able to hear your insight on my current situation.

    I’m currently an analyst at a MM bank for a bit under a year and, prior to that, I also worked at a top tier bank for under a year as well in a different role (credit risk). Back in May, I had accepted a lateral analyst offer from another MM bank that is basically in the same tier as my current MM bank and my start date is approaching shortly. However, I only accepted the MM lateral offer because I feel there is some job security risk at my current firm (team is bloated, offshoring certain responsibilities to India, senior mgt hinted at further restructuring). I wasn’t really interested in the MM lateral offer since there is virtually no upside with the lateral and honestly would have preferred my current firm (and my current higher pay) if it wasn’t for the job security risk here. My goal was always to try to wait for a UMM/BB/EB offer to come through before lateraling again (this would be my third job in basically 2 years so I want to make sure that I choose a place I would like to stick around for a while).

    Given my situation, what do you think would be the best approach here? Would you advise that I renege on the MM lateral offer and stay at my current MM bank (where there is some job security concerns) until I can hopefully secure a better offer (e.g., BB, EBs, UMM)? Or do you think it would be better to not renege and go to the new MM bank and then lateral from there after like 1-2 years (when the job market hopefully would look a bit better)?

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hard to answer because I don’t know how serious the job security concerns are or if the other MM banks would actually be better (I imagine many banks in this size range could be having similar issues).

      But, personally, I would not recommend accepting a MM lateral offer to move to another bank that’s almost the same just because there is some risk with your current job. I don’t think you’ll gain much, and if you make this move, you’ll have to stay at the new firm for another ~1 year to start interviewing for roles at other banks. Whereas you could start interviewing for those roles at larger banks right about now if you stay at your current firm. So I would probably renege on the MM lateral offer in this case.

  3. KennedyL

    Hey Brian,

    Hope all is well and thanks for the helpful content here! I’m kind of in a similar predicament and would love to get your views and insights on this situation.

    I recently lateraled to a MM bank as a lateral analyst hire. However, just after starting in this MM bank, I just received an offer from a Bulge-Bracket/Elite Boutique level bank. I’m much more interested in being able to develop a career with the BB/EB bank as I believe it would be a better learning experience that also would come with better exit opportunities. However, given that I just started (and already registered with FINRA) at the MM bank, I know that lateraling again after less than a month on the job could be a bad look to the BB/EB bank.

    My question is how likely will the EB/BB bank rescind my offer if they found out that I would have to leave a new job that I just started less than a month in for them (the BB/EB bank will likely be able to find this out given that I have registered via FINRA already)? Should I disclose this situation to the BB/EB bank or just not say anything and what do you think would be their likely response to this?

    Thank you!

    1. You are taking a risk, but generally the other bank will not care that much if they don’t view your current bank as a real “competitor.” If you want to take less of a chance, you could disclose this to the EB/BB bank and state that you took the MM role because you weren’t sure of the process timing and wanted to take the offer you had rather than wait for a better one, but obviously, you prefer this other bank. So you wanted to disclose it to them before you leave the MM bank after a month.

      I really don’t think the EB/BB bank will care, but the firm you just joined will be quite annoyed. However, my views on reneged offered have changed since this article was written ~15 years ago. Given that most banks don’t care much about their employees (see: all bank behavior over the past 15 years), I don’t think you should go out of your way to “stay loyal” – take the best offer you can get, and let them deal with the issues if you renege or leave early.

  4. Hi Brian,
    I am doing WInter 2024 IB internship at Big5 Bank next year. Apparently, they’ve really liked my interview and extended me an offer to join them for the summer 2024 as well. But I just got an offer from a pension fund (CPP, OTPP) in their PE group that I really want to as well. Should I renege summer 2024 IB at a Big5 to join the pension fund? Do you think that would affect my upcoming winter internship as well?

    1. Is this pension fund offer a full-time job offer or an internship offer?

      If it is just another summer internship, no, I would not renege on the Big 5 Canadian bank IB offer to join the pension fund. But if it is a full-time offer in PE at the pension fund, yes, it might make sense to renege in this situation since you can skip IB and get to the end goal more quickly.

      And yes, the Big 5 bank would care and might rescind or cancel your winter internship if you do this, which is why it’s not really worth it unless it’s a full-time role.

  5. Hi,

    I received a return offer for a big 4 BB markets division, but am feeling more inclined towards a career in equity research. I have another offer at Barclays for ER. Is it worth reneging? Will my bank find out?

    1. I would not normally recommend reneging in this situation, but if you’re 100% confident you want to do ER instead of markets, sure, you can. Your bank will likely find out and be upset, but that happens whenever you renege on offers.

  6. Hi Brian,
    I currently have accepted a BB SA offer, but have since received an offer for an off-cycle with high chance of turning into FT directly from another BB of the same “ranking”. With the current market, is it worth reneging to increase job security? Thank you!

    1. I’m not sure I would do that because the “chance of turning into an FT offer” is highly variable and based on market conditions. Normally it is better to do a summer internship offer and perform well, even if the bank allegedly gives fewer full-time offers to interns.

  7. Overlapping Internship

    Hello Brian,

    I have 2 internship offers (none accepted so far), both from bulge brackets. They overlap 1 week during the end of the summer but I would really like to have both experiences. One is summer analyst and one is off-cycle. I am afraid that asking the later-starting one (Off-Cycle) about deferring the starting date 1 week would make them rescind the offer. The summer analyst one is notorious for not moving their starting or ending dates.

    Are there any good alternatives to consider here? Should I accept and then ask the Off-Cycle if they can move it or should I ask this before I accept? Is it better to accept both offers immediately and hope to figure out some clever way to leave the Summer internship one week in advance to instead start my second internship? I prioritize having both internship experiences more than getting a return offer from the summer internship.


    1. All you can really do is ask the off-cycle one for a later start date. You should prioritize the summer internship if it leads to a return offer because that matters far more than getting another similar internship from another bank right after the first one. I would not accept both offers and try to figure out a way to leave the first internship early because that may end up costing you a full-time return offer.

  8. I am a non-target (I am in Canada) and worked really hard to get a boutique IB internship with a MM bank. However, after I accepted the offer a Big5 bank I applied to a couple months ago reached out to set up an interview for the same semester that my boutique internship is. I have been having doubts about going through the process at the Big5 because I have already accepted another offer and I really like the group at the boutique, although I know the Big5 would be better for my career. The only other time I could get an internship before I graduate would be for fall 2023 positions. Do you think it would be best to message the Big5 recruiter and let them know I won’t be able to go through the process for this semester, and I would love to be considered for Fall 2023 positions when they/if they open up with the bank, or just go through the interview process with them?

    1. I would just go through the process with the Big 5 bank and renege if you get an offer, as the jump from a middle market bank to a Big 5 one would be significant.

  9. Charlotte

    I am a sophomore at a non-target school, and I have accepted an offer for a internship/leadership development program with a mid-tier public accounting firm about a month ago, but I now have the opportunity to interview with a mid-tier REPE firm for a summer analyst program.

    Should I proceed with the internship interview as it lends the possibility of reneging the previous offer which is risky as you pointed out that this may endanger my FT recruiting chances, but this interview take place in a different industry? Also should I disclose that I have accepted an internship offer to the REPE firm early in the interview process or not?

    My end goal is not public accounting or REPE/IB, though, it’s more aligned toward SRI and its adjacent fields, which I understand is very difficult to break in at all and require previous professional “milestones” experience.

    1. Yes, I would proceed in this case because REPE is significantly better than a public accounting summer internship. You can tell the REPE firm that you accepted an offer previously but are willing to renege for this.

  10. Hello. Would it really hurt my chances in terms of the downside case if I reneged a top BB FT offer in Commercial Banking for a lower tier BB in IB?

    1. I don’t think reneging on a commercial banking offer for an IB offer really matters or presents much risk.

  11. Hi Brian. Do you think it would be worth it to renege on a top MM for a top BB or EB for a FT role? Considering PE is the end goal here. Does it matter if the top MM SA was won thru campus recruiting?

    1. Yes, that’s usually worth it. Different schools have different policies regarding reneging on offers, so you should ask someone about that first. If they threaten to expel you from school or something else that extreme, no, don’t do it. But if it’s something like limiting your access to on-campus recruiting in the future, that could be worth the penalty because you shouldn’t really need OCR if you perform well enough in the internship and get a return offer there.

  12. Hey Brian,

    Quick question. I’m currently an intern at a top group (M&A) at a mid tier BB (BAML/Citi) which places pretty well into PE. Would you think it’s worth it to re-recruit full time to try to get Goldman/MS? My goal is UMM/MF PE — would the move make a big difference? I come from an Ivy League undergrad in case that’s relevant. Thanks.

    1. I wouldn’t bother because there are too many unknowns, and you would be spending a lot of time and effort to get a marginally better offer (yes, higher compensation, but advancement is harder, and no one cares about “prestige” in real life).

  13. Hey Brian, saw you answered similar questions but thought I’d ask the entirety of my situation to get your take. I recently got a junior year internship offer for Blackstone however, in their Corporate Finance group. Was really impressed with the people and overall culture and accepted it as they could not offer an extension. But, being an undergraduate from a target school, would you recommend reneging my offer and interviewing for a more front-office role? Long term goal is PE, which of course Blackstone is a giant in that field. So I wanted to gauge your opinion on determining if reneging this offer for a “better” or more traditional route into PE, like IB, is worth possibly being on bad terms with Blackstone?

    1. If you can get a much better offer, such as a front-office IB role at a large bank or an Investment Analyst role at a reputable PE firm, yes, it’s worth it to renege for those. But if it’s something like an IB role at a MM or boutique bank, I would not renege for one of those, as you’ll end up having to move around afterward anyway.

  14. Hi Brian! Thank you for this great post, I see you answered a comment similar to mine, but wanted to fully explain and get your take. (Also it’s incredible that you still respond to such an old post!)

    I am currently at a Big4 accounting firm following my attendance at a small non-target liberal arts school and was looking to get into IB. I made the decision far too late and there were no IB FT Analyst Positions available for the upcoming summer. I ended up receiving an offer from GS as part of their AMD. After accepting, a position in IB for a MM became available and I have applied with a very strong referral. Would it hurt my future career prospects to renege on this offer (assuming I get the MM IB Position)? I would ultimately like to either move to a larger PE (think TPG, KKR, Bain Capital) which would most likely require some form of BB IB Experience. Would reneging this AMD offer at GS make this difficult going forward? (Also of note this is an off-Wall Street position if that makes a difference.)

    Thanks again for your help and this incredible website!

    1. I don’t think it will hurt you to renege on an offer in asset management if your ultimate goal is IB. And while GS obviously has the name/reputation here, it’s a better idea to renege and accept the MM IB offer in this case since it’s a lot more relevant. You can eventually move to a larger bank anyway, and I don’t think reneging on this one offer at GS will make a difference in your prospects.

  15. Hi Brian,

    What if I accepted a S&T offer from a mid-low bulge bank 3-4 months back but got a top 5 hedge fund investments role?

    What should I do?

    1. If your goal is to work at a HF long-term, you should renege. If you’re not sure what you want to do and you want to keep more options open, there’s an argument for sticking with the S&T offer. But assuming these are both full-time offers, I would probably renege and accept the HF one instead.

  16. Hi Brian, I have just graduated from college and I have an offer to do a Sales and Trading internship with one of the investment banks (think jefferies/nomura/evercore) with a potential conversion. Now with 2 weeks before I start, I have a FT offer in Investment Banking with one of the smaller North American banks. I think a career in IB may be more suited for me but would you recommend to renege from an internship 2 weeks before the start date for a FT role in IB? Thank you!

    1. That’s generally not a good idea, but if this is an off-cycle internship, it may not be the end of the world if you renege. Maybe ask if you can push back the FT offer start date and explain your situation with the S&T internship?

  17. What’s your sense of reneging on an offer if this is more of a senior role (senior associate / VP) after verbal acceptance? This is going from a MM to a top EB.

    1. Don’t know offhand, sorry. But I would assume it’s probably fine, as it’s difficult to verify much in the lateral process, and you can’t really “get in trouble” with anyone if you’re doing this outside of on-campus recruiting.

  18. Hi Bryan,

    Would you renege on RBC for Jefferies in London? (IBD generalist scheme).

    1. Hmm.. they’re about the same, so I probably wouldn’t renege in this case. Jefferies is slightly better depending on how you “rank” firms, but I don’t think it’s a big enough difference to renege.

  19. Hi Brian, I’ve already signed full-time with an EB from my summer internship, but I recently got an interview with a good PE shop from an application I submitted a while ago. Should I disclose any info about my full-time offer before interviewing?

    1. I would, yes, because the PE firm likely works with this EB on deals, so it could potentially be an issue. But, to be honest, turnover in IB is currently even higher than usual, so I don’t think anyone will care. They are desperate for warm bodies.

  20. Hi Brian,

    Thanks for the informative post. Would really appreciate some advice here. Accepted an offer at a MM for an IB Summer internship. Just received a super day at a top BB. Is it worth it to attend the super day?

  21. Hi Brian! Thoughts on reneging a mid-tier BB (Citi/CS/BAML) for GS/Evercore? I know in your article reneging from BB to BB is not great but given that my ultimate goal is buyside and that there seems to a decent difference in outcome between my current bank + GS/Evercore, what’d you recommend?

    1. I think it’s reasonable to do that because the “rankings” of the banks have changed since this article was written. GS and Evercore are noticeably better than those other firms, at least if you’re targeting the biggest buy-side funds.

  22. Hi Brian,

    Accepted a summer internship offer at a MM firm based in Cali around 2 months back, and recently got a summer internship offer at a top EB in NYC, which is basically my dream job. What are your thoughts on this situation? I would like to renege, but I don’t know how to. Could you offer me some advice? Thanks a lot!

    1. I think it’s worth reneging in this case. Just email them and say that you are going to decline the offer because your career plans have changed.

  23. Hi Brian, thanks for the article!

    I am an international student in Germany who will graduate this month.
    I had not found a full-time job a month ago, so I applied for internships at big banks and full-time jobs at smaller banks. (Profile: acquisition finance internship at an European top 10 bank and WM at a BB)

    Last week, I accepted an offer at an In-Between-Banks (Société Générale / BNP / Macquarie,…) for an internship in Q1 2022. However, today I got a full-time offer from a local boutique.
    The boutique is smaller, but it is a full-time job.
    In this case, is it worthy to renege…?
    My friends have different opinions.
    Would love to hear your thought!

    Thanks in advance!

    1. That is a tough one, but I would say yes, it’s worthwhile because a full-time job is more important than the bank’s name/prestige at this point.

  24. Hey Brian – potential renege here. I’ve accepted an offer from a reputable MM for SA (RJ/HW/Baird/Stifel/Blair), but have also been extended offers at a European BB (DB/UBS/Barclays). I didn’t use OCR for the MM but did get my BB offer through OCR. Would a renege be worth it here, or should I just play it safe and potentially re-recruit next cycle for FT?

    1. Yes, I think reneging would be worth it in this case. And if you got the MM offer through networking on your own, there isn’t much risk in reneging.

  25. Hi Brian,

    Would you consider reneging a top BB (GS/JPM/MS) in Houston for top BB in NYC? This is FT by the way. Thanks

    1. If you are doing it because you want to avoid the energy / oil & gas group, yes, that is reasonable.

  26. Hi Brian,
    Thanks for the content. I am a student from a non-target. I accepted a MO role at a BB (GS/JPM) but I have been invited to interview at a top MM bank for IB with a strong referral. Is it worth if to renege? Will I prevent future students at my school from getting a shot at the BB?

    1. This is for internships by the way not FT

      1. What to do

        Hi Brian, would you renege a internship BB FO (ER, S&t) offer for a BB IB offer? really need help here man

        1. Depends on why you’re reneging. If you’re VERY certain you want to do IB instead and want to stay in it or want exit opportunities that require it, then yes, it probably makes sense to renege. If you’re doing it just because you’re not sure you want to stay in ER or S&T long term, not sure I would recommend it because you also don’t know whether or not you’ll prefer IB.

    2. Yes. No, they won’t care or remember if you renege.

  27. Hi Brian – thanks a lot for the article. It’s not IB, but what’s your view on reneging offers for buyside roles? I.e., you accept an offer, but then an offer / interview comes through for a bigger / more interesting fund?

    1. I think it’s less risky because people are more spread out, and there’s less of a chance of Person X at Small Fund A telling Person Y at Large Fund B.

  28. Hi Brian – thank you so much for the article.

    My situation is kind of complicated here. I have accepted a FT return offer from a mid-tier BB in NYC, yet it was for S&T and I realized it was not something I wanted to do after the summer. I talked to my HR and asked for an internal transfer before I signing the offer. HR told me it is not possible this year due to COVID. So I applied to the rest of BBs for an IBD summer internship before the offer exploded (at that time, I was thinking of defering my graduation to pursue a double major and not signing the ft offer). Yet I did not hear back from any of the banks I applied so I decided to carry on and sign the offer for now and try internal transfer the next year.

    However, recently I was contacted by one of the BBs I applied before I signed the offer, and was offered interview. I accepted the interview invitation with them. Yet during the first HR call, they asked me if I have any exploding offer on hand. I hesitated and did not tell them that I already signed a full time offer (I did not know what to say…)

    The thing is, I know I don’t want to do S&T and the only reason I am taking the offer is for internal transfer. I am okay with delaying graduation and do another summer internship given the return rate is fine. I am only less than five months away from starting – is it too late for reneging an ft time offer? Is delaying graduation a valid reason to renege? what should I do? Thank you so much for any advice.

    1. You can always renege. The question is, how much risk does it present, i.e., will this bank tell the other bank about it? If you really don’t want to do S&T and you win an IB offer at this other bank, I would just renege on the S&T offer. Either way, you’re looking at more time required to get into IB. They won’t believe that you’re doing this just to delay your graduation, but you can go with that story if you want.

      1. Thanks Brian, I believe they would certainly find out as they would eventually call my ft bank for a background check. Should I tell the HR at the new bank about this?

  29. Hey Brian, thanks for the article. Would love to hear your advice.

    1. Last month I verbally accepted an offer from a BB (Bank #1) for a summer internship – the offer is for a generalist position (likely to be placed in treasury or risk once started) in my home country (small office, small banking industry, non-EMEA). Bank #1 recently sent me the contract to sign within a week.

    2. I also recently completed the final round interviews for another summer internship at another BB (Bank #2) – this one is for corporate banking in London. This is my dream location and division, however, I am non-EU (not sure if this affects conversion for FT roles)

    HR of Bank #2 called me to tell me that they “liked me” and were waiting to interview one more candidate before any final decisions are made. Not sure what that entails. It just so happens that Bank #2 will only get back to me with a final decision after my deadline for signing Bank #1’s contract has passed.

    Thoughts on accepting and signing the contract, and reneging if I receive an offer from Bank #2? Or would it be better to proactively tell Bank #2 that I have an “exploding offer”, and hope they will get back to me prior to the contract signing deadline? Unsure of whether telling them about another offer will cause them to ding me, or whether this is relevant at all because I’ve already verbally accepted Bank #1’s offer.

  30. Hi Brian – thanks for the post. I got an offer with a small fund (a few hundred million) and accepted it but now close to getting offers with two other PE funds that are larger and have much strong brand name. Would it be worth reneging? They are in the same region and some people might know others

    1. Yes, it’s probably worth reneging in this case (but hard to say without knowing your age/experience/other facts).

  31. Lateral man

    How is reneging on lateral hiring viewed as? Top MM (think Jefferies etc) to mid-tier BB (Barclays/BAML/Citi/CS)

    1. Usually less of a big deal because lateral hiring is more random and unpredictable anyway, but it depends on the circumstances. They will care more if they desperately needed someone at the last minute and you reneged, and less if it was more of an off-and-on process over many months.

  32. Hi Brian,

    I’ve signed a IB return offer after the summer internship in a top MM in Asia (Hong Kong / Singapore) but now get an opportunity to interview with a mid tier BB (Citi/Baml/CS) in the same city.

    Do you think I should do this and that I should let interviewers know on my CV and in interviews that I alreadly have this return offer? Also, how should I tell the MM if I decide to renege?


    1. Yes, it’s worthwhile to at least interview with them. You should tell them at the start of the interview so they know upfront that you would be reneging on another offer. Just write a short email to the MM bank saying that your plans changed if you go through with that.

  33. Hi,

    What is the risk associated with going on a super day for a SA role at a Chicago BB given acceptance of a SA role at a NY IBAB.

    1. Not very high, you should do it if given the chance.

  34. Hi Brian,

    Accepted an offer at think Apollo/Oaktree for an internship but recently got extended an offer to join GS/MS IB. I want to renege because Apollo/Oaktree has Zero chance to get a full-time offer down the line, but I made the mistake of not telling GS/MS that I already signed with Apollo/Oaktree at the superday

    Should I tell GS/MS that I am rejecting another offer for them and should I specifically say where (Apollo/Oaktree)? Or should I accept and keep my mouth shut? Worried that GS/MS might rescind the offer cause of their relationships with Apollo/Oaktree

    Only problem is that I interned at Apollo/Oaktree as a sophomore so that when GS/MS does a background check, GS/MS will know I rejected an offer

    How should I tell Apollo/Oaktree that I want to decline the offer w/o burning bridges and having them call GS/MS to pull my offer?

    On the off chance, Apollo/Oaktree isn’t okay with me reneging, what do I do to join GS/MS and minimize the risk of my offer being taken away? Really don’t want to do full-time recruiting for IB

    1. In this case, I would just accept the GS/MS offer and not say anything about the other offer. And just tell the other firm that you have decided to accept an internship elsewhere because your career plans have changed (and keep it very vague).

      I don’t think any of this is super-important for internships. Reneging tends to be more of a problem with full-time offers because those are awarded after a firm has tested you over an entire internship.

      1. Much appreciated – will do that.

        In regards to the background check with MS/GS, would you expect Apollo/Oaktree to tell MS/GS that I reneged? Or is it more just confirming responsibilities?

        Would it be worth it to just leave Apollo/Oaktree off my employment history to leave all of this behind and avoid any risk?

        1. They usually just confirm that you worked there on the dates listed.

          I think you will get a lot of questions if you omit an internship completely, such as why it doesn’t match your resume, so that doesn’t seem like a good idea.

  35. Hi Brian,

    I’ve accepted a FT offer from an In-Between-A-Bank (IBAB) after being a SA but have been getting SA interviews from various BBs and EBs. Assuming I get an SA offer from a BB or EB, do you think it’s worth to renege the FT offer that I received from the IBAB?

    1. Yes, I’d say so. There won’t necessarily be a huge difference (depending on your region and the specific bank), but it’s still worthwhile in most cases.

  36. Potential renege from MM firm to BB and would appreciate your guidance. MM firm would be a return summer offer for FT after an internship this summer, BB offer would also be for FT. Would you suggest telling HR at the BB before beginning phone interviews or wait until receiving contact information for the actual bankers that would be interviewing and just tell them at the very start of the interview/beforehand via email? Thank you

    1. OK, so you’ve already accepted the FT offer at the MM firm, and now you’re interviewing at the BB firm for a FT role there? If that’s the case, probably just tell the bankers you interview with at the BB and make it clear that you’ve won and accepted the offer because you had to decide quickly, but you’re willing to renege and wanted to let them know upfront.

  37. My sophomore internship in Investment Operations extended me a 2021 SA return offer which I signed, but I recently received a 2021 SA offer from a good investment bank. Is it worth reneging in this situation?

  38. Hi Brian – I was wondering if I should renege on big 4 transaction service junior yr internship for a BB IBD internship in US. Both internships start a year from now. Currently signed with big 4 and in interview stage with BB. Specifically:

    1. Should I tell BB that I already signed with a Big 4 internship? And if BB explicitly asks me if I have signed an offer elsewhere, should I say I haven’t?
    2. If I don’t tell BB that I signed with another firm, what are the chances that they find out later on and rescind my offer? Will Big 4 or BB go out of their way to destroy my career?
    3. Is reneging worth it for a junior year internship from Big 4 to BB IBD with no FT guarantee? (I ultimately want to work in IB. You mentioned that the upside in jumping from Big 4 to BB is worth it, but the downside of reneging on an internship is not; do you think the upsides outweigh downsides in this case?).

    1. 1) Yes, you should tell them you’ve accepted an offer elsewhere but are willing to renege if they’re OK with it.

      2) I don’t think they’ll rescind anything if they know in advance, and the Big 4 firm is so big it probably won’t even care.

      3) Yes, it is worth it in this case. Big 4 to a large bank in IB is a big jump.

      1. Thanks for your response, Brian! If the BB doesn’t ask if I accepted an offer elsewhere, should I still proactively tell them? If so, should I do this during the interview phase or after they’ve (hopefully) given me the offer? I’m afraid they may ding me if it was during an interview.

        1. Also asking because I’ll be reneging an internship that I haven’t even started, so I don’t think it will show up on background or reference checks, right?

        2. Yes, it’s best to tell them proactively during interviews just so they’re aware. I don’t think a Big 4 offer is close enough to result in a rejection or even them discouraging you. If you never start this internship, it can’t show up in backgrounds checks.

  39. Hi Brian, do you think leaving an MM for an EB and telling the MM you are pursuing an M&A role elsewhere is too much info to give?

    1. I am really panicking that I have said too much. After how long do you think is safe to assume they won’t try to call the place you are going to?

      1. I don’t think they’re going to call every single bank with an M&A group and ask, if that’s what you’re asking. They might casually ask other employees and see if anyone knows where you’re moving, but that’s about it.

  40. Hi Brian- thanks for a great post. I’ve made the decision to renege for a better offer and wanted your input on the best way to do so. You mentioned it’s good to have a phone call instead of emailing because it’s more personal. Given that it’s Friday evening I was planning on emailing the recruiter Monday requesting a call ASAP. What do you suggest is the best way to phrase that I am reneging? Also, what questions should I anticipate the recruiter to ask? Do you think it’s likely they will ask which firm I am switching to?

    1. If you have this many questions about it, you’re probably going to sound very nervous on the phone, so you’re better off just emailing them. Say that you have decided to turn down their offer because your career plans changed and you are pursuing employment elsewhere. If they call you, just repeat the same thing, and if they ask the firm you’re switching to, say that you’d rather not say.

  41. Hi Brian, thank you for making such a comprehensive post. I received and accepted an IB offer from a MM bank (think Macquarie/William Blair/Baird) through early diversity recruitment. However, I also received an offer from an Elite Boutique firm. I accepted the first offer because of worries of how successful recruiting would be in the summer, given the highly competitive nature of the industry. Do you suggest reneging in this situation? Any thoughts on potential concerns and consequences?

    1. Additionally, if you believe reneging is plausible for this situation, what do you believe is the best way to approach it?

    2. It is probably worth it to renege in this case, assuming you won’t be penalized by your school in some way. Just keep it brief and email the bank to let them know.

      1. Sorry, could you please clarify the potential school penalties in this situation? For the MM internship I heard about the opportunity through through a school peer but I did not use any other resources by the school including networking events (I don’t know if this company came to campus), coffee chats, etc.

        1. If you didn’t get it officially through on-campus recruiting at the school, you’ll probably be fine

  42. Thanks for the great post. How would you see it if it was reneging an internship for a FT offer? I got a FT (other bank) after having accepted an internship. The end goal is to start IB FT and at the internship would not be too likely to result in a FT offer. The FT offer at the other bank is quite competitive and I might not get a second shot at a similar shop. Nevertheless, it must be said that it is like that the senior guys of the two shops know each other. And in today’s day and age they would also definitely find out what place I reneged the internship for if they would want to. What would you recommend in this situation?

    1. If the internship is unlikely to lead to a full-time offer, it’s still better to renege on it and accept the FT offer. Yes, they might be mad, but ultimately it’s all about whether or not you’ll get a full-time offer.

      1. How would you see it if the MDs of both companies know each other very well (worked together)? Do you think they would understand that I reneg an internship for a FT position or would they see it as a lack of integrity? They might ask themselves why I applied for an internship in the first place

        1. There’s no way you can tell. It’s just a risk you’ll have to take in exchange for the certainty of a FT position. If it somehow comes up or they ask you, just say it was due to timing and the fact that you received notification of the FT offer interviews later or something like that.

  43. Hernandez

    Hi, thank you so much for clarifying some of the reneging myths. I currently have verbally accepted an offer for Guggenheim Restructuring, but I have a superday coming up for JPM NY. I wonder if I can ask for an extension in guggenheim or if it’s worth to renege? I think JPM exits is better than Guggenheim RX. My only concern is that the senior MD also the founder of the rx group at Guggenheim really liked me and he texted me to congrats and welcomed me to the team. Truly appreciate your insights on this!

    1. I would not renege in this case. Yes, JPM is “better,” but Guggenheim is still a fine firm, and Restructuring is the best group to be in now. You could ask for an extension, sure, but you’re taking a risk by doing so because they’ll immediately know that you’re trying to win an offer elsewhere. If you do decide to do the JPM Superday, it’s best to do it, tell them your situation upfront, see what happens, and then make a decision. But I would not recommend reneging to make this type of move.

      1. Hernandez

        Hi Brian, thank you so much for the response. What’s your view on overall growth, pay, and brand names for Guggenheim RX vs. Ares Private Credit. FYI, my desired exit opportunities for RX is private credit/debt and distressed private equity. I’m having a hard time choosing between these two. My biggest concern is the limited skillset from jumping into bayside out of undergraduate. Appreciate your response!

        1. I would still pick Guggenheim because it’s rarely a good idea to take a buy-side role right out of undergrad when you’re note even sure what you want to do yet. You’ll have more options if you do IB first.

  44. Hi Brian,

    I really appreciated your answer to another question I posted, and could really use your help on this one too. So I’m a college senior who signed an IB analyst offer with Mizuho/CIBC in NY. An opportunity came up recently with a Chicago BB looking for additional IB analysts to start FT this summer. I’m tempted to interview because I really want to work at a BB, but I’m also hesitant because I’m afraid my current employer will find out and rescind my offer once I begin the interview process.

    Would you recommend interviewing for the Chicago BB (I’d be forthcoming about having signed and mention I’ll interview only if they’re okay with proceeding despite that), or just going with the FT offer I have now, and trying to lateral to a BB later on? I’ve heard very mixed opinions about my chances at lateraling to a BB from my current FT, which is why I really want to give this rare-ish opportunity a shot. Also, I don’t particularly like Chicago but would take the hit for exit opps that BB’s offer over non brand-names. Worth it?

    Thanks again!!

    1. I would give it a shot in this case because it’s unlikely that the other bank would find out, and a BB would be a significant step up over one of those. It’s always possible to lateral if you network enough and keep following up, but it’s much easier to start out at a BB if you have the chance.

      1. Hi Brian,

        Thanks so much for weighing, I think that makes a lot of sense and will give the interview a shot. Appreciate you taking the time to respond!

  45. TheRugbyMan

    Hi Brian,

    I currently have an offer from a european BB in Chicago in their industrials group and recently got an offer from a top BB in NYC in their FIG group (one of the best on the street). These are both FT. IS it worth the risk to renege? Would appreciate our help

    1. I would probably not renege in this case because FIG is very specialized and constrains your exit opportunities. So unless you really want to be in FIG long-term, a FIG offer may not be a great idea to accept. Industrials in Chicago gives you broader opportunities.

  46. Hey Brian
    I did a summer intern at BB, and accepted the full time return offer in the markets division. However, I just received an email from one of the best hedge funds in the street regarding the interview of a trading/investing position. (DE Shaw/ Millenium) In the email, they are asking me to confirm whether I have any exploding offer.

    I really wish to work at the hedge fund, but would worry that saying I have accepted another offer jeopardize my application process.However, if I do not disclose about having accepted offer, the hedge fund might find out about it during the background check by calling up my previous employer.

    What actions should I take in this case? Can you give me some advices?
    Thanks !

    1. You should disclose that you have accepted a full-time return offer, but you will definitely interview with them if they are OK with you potentially reneging on it. Otherwise you run the risk of them finding out later on or in the background check.

  47. Hi Brian,

    Really appreciate your thoughts. Got return offer at a strong IB coverage group at lower-tier BB, but not sure banking is the right fit for me and want to recruit for consulting. Should I say yes and renege later if I get a job in consulting or decline the offer? Thank you!

    1. Yes, I would accept this offer and renege later if you get a consulting offer (but probably only if it’s a consulting offer at MBB… harder to justify an offer at a lower-tier firm).

  48. Hi Brian,

    Just finished a summer at a mid-tier BB (Citi/BAML) in a decent coverage group (C&R/Power/Healthcare). However, I just received my dream offer from an EB, and want to accept. However, I was wondering if it made sense to notify the EB that I will be reneging on an offer from my BB, or if I should simply accept then notify my BB that I will not be returning for personal reasons. My contact at the EB knew about my offer deadline and simply chose not to address it when we talked and emailed. Does it even make sense to renege? Will the EB care?

    1. I don’t think reneging will provide a huge benefit in this case, but you might as well do it because it sounds like the EB also doesn’t care what you do. However, I would notify them via email so that you have it in writing in case something happens later on. An EB vs. Citi/BAML probably won’t make a massive difference in exit opportunities, but it could deliver other benefits (more independence/interesting work).

  49. TheYoungWolf

    Hey Brian, I think I will most likely be reneging on a Corporate Banking Internship offer in SF/Chi/Houston for an IB Internship. Assuming all else equal, do you think it would be better and safer to do my IB internship a different location?

  50. Dear Brian,

    Do you think that reneging an offer for a middle office role (Credit Risk) will have influence on front office (M&A, Capital Markets) recruiting 3~5 years from now?

    I accepted a Credit Risk role in a large bank (JPM/Citi/BOA) a week ago, but today a boutique private equity gave me an offer to join them as a full-time analyst.

    My eventual aim is use this private equity exerience to get an analyst/associate role in BB front office. But I am afraid that my reneging on the Credit Risk role may have adverse impact on future recruiting.

    FYI- The PE is aware that I already have an offer and they made this offer with expectation that I would renege on the Credit Risk offer.

    1. I don’t think it will matter, at all. In 3-5 years, 90% of the people at that large bank will be gone anyway (at least the ones in front office roles).

  51. Hi Brian,

    Could really use your advice here. Accepted an early process IB offer with BAML/Barclays/Citi in a top regional city (think SF, Chicago, Houston, LA). But goal is to be in NYC and just received a NYC IB offer with a tier 1 IB BB firm (GS/MS/JPM) in my desired coverage group. Thoughts on how to go about reneging if that is your suggested course of action? I would appreciate any advice you might have. Thank you!

    1. Reneging poses some risk in that scenario, and I can’t quantify it or tell you 100% whether or not it’s worth it. If you are set on PE mega-fund opportunities, it probably makes sense, but otherwise, I’m not sure because there is some risk of the first bank notifying the second bank. So… maybe let the second bank know what you’re doing first and then write a brief email to the first bank saying that you have decided to decline the offer because you won something in your desired location in NY. But as I said, there is some risk here, so I would not recommend doing this in all scenarios.

  52. Hi Brian,

    would really appreciate your advice.

    Accepted an offer for equity derivatives sales internship in BNP; got an offer for off cycle at DCM at BAML week after.

    My long term goal is to go into fixed income S&T; what would be best? Salary at BAML is much better, but I am scared by the talk of limited exit opps. both banks are very strong.
    Is it worth reneging in this case in your opinion ?

    1. If you want to do fixed income S&T in the long term, either one could work. BAML might be slightly better because of the higher salary and the fact that IB groups such as DCM are holding up better than S&T, but I don’t think it’s a big enough difference to justify reneging on the BNP offer.

      1. Thanks for your insight – I have been thinking about it and I’m still unsure about my future career path. I have a clear idea of what S&T and I think I want to go into that, but I’ve never actually tried it – scared that maybe I’m not good at it.

        Maybe DCM could be better from this point of view, because from there you can move in either direction (trying IB or S&T next) rather than locking myself up on the trading floor?

        Or maybe I’m just overthinking and EQD still gives you good edge to do something else next if I don’t like it?

        1. OK, but if you don’t try S&T at some point, how can you know if it’s right for you? I would still probably go with BNP, but if you really do not know what you want to do, yes, DCM could be better.

          1. Firstly thank you so much for your advice

            yours is a great point and that is what I thought..but what really made me change my mind is that after making some phone calls I realized the BNP position is not about selling proper derivatives like options or swaps, but “buy side products” (e.g. quant funds based on equity derivatives). yes, still form the trading floor, but not proper S&T. Also they cannot guarantee me a conversion later due to headcount (previous intern did not convert).

            On the other hand, the DCM there team has a great reputation internally and I have seen people moving around and supported. Spoke to associates there and they said previous ppl went also to LevFin or Rates (understandable if you move from sovereign) so I think, career wise, that would be better.

          2. OK. If they can’t guarantee a full-time conversion and it’s very specialized, then yes, DCM may be better.

  53. Brian,

    Really needs your advice on this. I accepted an MBB offer (yes, management consultanting) in a small regional office but was offered another position at a MF credit opportunities (Apollo / BX / Bain Cap / Carlyle) in NYC. Should I renege? The problem is that I’m really passionate about finance and I’d be fine to start off as the credit guy. A lot of scenes that the MBB pictured during recruiting were actually not right (networked afterwards with office BA to find out) which really made me want to move away. I don’t want to stuck in a sketchy city doing pure strategy ops. Long term goal is still finance- (PE/VC/Growth equity fund). What should I do?

    1. I think this is a clear case when you should renege on the offer. The only reason to stick with the MBB offer is if you really do not want to do finance, or you want a long-term career in consulting or something else more operational.

      1. Brian,
        Thank you for your reply! I was talking to people and they seemed to be one two different ends. Some tell me that if I am in credit, I am pigeonholed and can’t move to broader private equity even if I want. On the other hand consulting does have some exit opportunity (BainCap, Golden Gate, Vista etc) for post two year analyst experience. Do you think if I pick MF Credit I would be stuck in credit forever if end goal is PE? PS – the guy told me this worked on Carlyle distress and special sits in London..

        1. Apologize for the typos…I’m a bit sleep deprived..

        2. If you switch to normal PE early enough, you won’t be pigeonholed. If you stay for years and years, yes, sure, you may end up stuck in credit.

          I don’t think consulting exit opportunities will be that great coming from a regional office. You’re at a disadvantage if you’re not in NY. And even if you are at MBB in NY, you’re still at a disadvantage in PE recruiting next to most bankers… yes, some firms like to hire consultants, but relatively few out of the total number of PE firms out there.

  54. Hi Brian,

    Really need help making a right decision here. I’m a first year analyst in a corporate banking division at small European bank, trying very hard to move into IB. This week I received an offer for a big Japanese bank with the better pay and group, but also within corporate banking. Yesterday had a second interview with a MM Investment Bank, and they asked me to let them know an expiration date of my offer. I have two more days before expiration and I am not sure what I should tell the MM bank. I never reneged an offer before and I am very nerveous on making a decision here, but IB is something I really want to do. Thank you in advance.

    1. If you really want to do IB, then hold out for it. There is no point in moving to another corporate banking role if you don’t want to be in CB. Just tell the MM bank that you only have days to respond, and if it doesn’t work, keep recruiting for IB offers elsewhere.

  55. algernonlf

    Hi Brian,

    I have two offers for junior year internships – Wells Fargo Corporate Banking in Midwest and HSBC Liquidity/Cash Management in NYC. I accepted the one from WF and was offered HSBC after. Which one do you think I should go with? HSBC is paying better, is in NYC, better brand name, however its not IB. I aspire to be within CB/IB for FT at a BB.

    Do Bankers weigh relevant skills more than a better brand name internship? Should I renege on Wells offer? Please advise, thanks.

    1. I would stick with Wells Fargo here because not only is the WF IB division stronger than HSBC’s (I don’t even think HSBC does much in the US), but I would also argue that the brand names/reputations are similar. The only real advantage of the HSBC offer is the location, but I don’t think it’s a big enough advantage to justify reneging.

  56. Hi Brian,
    I am really having a hard time deciding what to do in my situation. I am hoping you can give me your advice. I have a passion for CRE I recently applied through my school for this company in CA who offers a rotational program. Since I have been working full time as a finance analyst for 1.5 years (not in RE), I jumped at the chance to apply because this was my one shot chance to transition over to RE without prior experience. I got the offer but at a much lower amount than what I am making now and although I asked them to match me they wouldn’t budge. I accepted the offer anyway, because I really wanted to do CRE. Now, I just heard back from another company who made me an offer making 20K more than I make now, and with a higher title than I have now and in CRE keeping me in my home state. This presents such a huge dilemma for me because I never told the second company that I had already accepted an offer. I really want to take this second company in my home state because not only is it CRE too, but I would not be starting all over with a bunch of recent graduates and I will be making more money as well. What are the chances that if I renege on the accepted offer that this will have a huge negative impact on me or that these two companies would find out about each other?
    Am I being selfish for wanting a better position for myself?

    1. I think you can and should renege in that situation and be fine. There’s no point in accepting a sub-par offer with lower pay when you have a clearly better option. Real estate is such a big industry that I doubt anyone will find out about it.

  57. Hi Brian- appreciate you’ve kinda answered this but any advice would be much appreciated. I feel this could be slightly UK specific. Signed on for Evercore summer IB, just got JP IB summer offer. UK specific, because over here far less prestige for Evercore, they only take around 14 interns, and send you to NY for training for 3 weeks. Compared to c. 80 interns in JP IB and 8 weeks in NY for training if get FT role. Keen to renege- any tips?

    1. Personally, I would not renege on Evercore for JPM unless you’re very certain that you want to do something outside of banking/PE in the future. Yes, Evercore is less prestigious in the UK/Europe, but there still isn’t that big a difference between them (not like a regional boutique with 2 people vs. JPM).

      You can probably get away with it if you want to, but I’m just not sure how much it would help you unless your eventual goal is to work at a normal company outside finance.

  58. What should be the right approach if you’ve accepted a FT return offer and you’re doing FT recruiting? Banks will definitely ask if I got a return offer and while I want to showcase that I’m capable by getting a return offer, I also don’t want to show lack of commitment by saying I’ve accepted and am interviewing. How should I structure the answer to that question?

    P.S. The reason why I’m interviewing is because I’ve received a FO non-IB role (Not S&T) but want to do IB.

    1. Just say that you received a FT return offer, but are still interviewing for other roles because you want to do IB. You don’t have to say that you accepted it yet, and in fact you probably shouldn’t say that until you get further into the process (just to make them aware that you will be reneging on another offer tpo take this one).

      1. So I’ll take that as unless I get asked directly in an interview if I accepted, I will just say I got the offer and am pursuing FT IB roles. So should I only voluntarily disclose that I accepted my return offer if I get the IB offer? Correct me if I’m wrong but wouldn’t bankers generally appreciate the honesty in the super day? I understand that it’s not a good look when interviewing and you say that you accepted somewhere already else but I would think that Bankers would get pissed if they extend me an offer and I respond by saying I would like to accept but I would have to renege on another bank.

        1. If you want to say it upfront in Superday interviews, sure, go ahead. I don’t know. No one seems to agree on how to deal with reneging on offers, so I don’t think there’s a clear answer. Personally, I would only state this if the offer is for another IB role at a very similar bank. If it is a non-IB role or it is at a much smaller bank or different firm, you don’t have that much to lose by reneging.

  59. Thank you so much for such a great post! I am in a position where I have two Bulge Bracket full-time offers. I spent my summer in capital markets at a mid-tier bulge bracket bank, and really wanted to move over to coverage IB but was denied. I ended up accepting my offer back but just got an offer from another bulge bracket guaranteeing me a coverage group. Do you think its appropriate to renege?

    1. Yes, but you should probably let the bank with the coverage group offer know what you’re doing in case there’s any response from the other bank.

  60. Thanks for the great article. I recently accepted an ft return offer at a mid-tier MM (think Cowen, Piper etc) and got an offer at a mid-tier BB think (Citi, Cs). Is this worth reneging? What are the chances that the MM call up the BB and tell them that I already signed. And, if I sign with the BB, will they find out that I reneged on MM during background check process? if so, will they rescind my offer? What’s the best way to handle this situation. Thanks.

    1. I would say it’s worth reneging in that case yes. Just tell the BB that you want to accept their offer, but to do so, you would have to renege on one at another bank and make sure they’re OK with it first, which they normally will be.

  61. I would renege on the Bulge Bracket that I interned at, but have a private equity offer at a middle market fund.

  62. Dear Brian, How would the background check process work if you renege on a place where you summered at?

    1. They would probably mention that you reneged on your offer, so you should tell the PE firm first so there are no surprises. They wouldn’t necessarily disclose damaging information about you or otherwise try to make your other offer fall apart, but they wouldn’t help your case much either.

  63. Hi Bryan,

    I currently have an offer from a MM O&G bank in Houston for a SA position but just got an offer from a BB SA (think UBS, CS, Barclays) in NYC. I received the offer from the bank in Houston and accepted a little over 4 months ago. Can I renege on that offer? the offer from the BB is in natural resources and the MD is from Houston. interested to know what you think.

    1. You could, but there’s definitely some risk there because it’s the same industry group and senior bankers will tend to know each other. If you want to stay in energy long term, I’d say the upside isn’t that great. Reneging would be more useful if you want to move into a more generalist industry after a year or so in natural resources.

  64. Hi Bryan,

    Nice post as always. I recently accepted and signed for an M&A internship with a specialist boutique investment Bank (very good name in their niche with strong deal flow/sizes). However, I’ve been told that there’s no need for full time recruiting in the end. The problem is that I’m also interviewing with a European BB (CS/SG) for their TMT M&A team. Internship with the potential conversion in the end.
    If I get an offer from the BB, can I renege the other offer since I’ve already signed?

    PS. I applied to the BB before I even get an interview with the boutique. The process with the boutique is at the references stage.

    1. Not sure I understand your question – are you saying that there’s no chance you’ll receive a full-time return offer from the boutique bank? If that’s the case, then yes, I would definitely recommend reneging if you win an offer at a European BB that offers a decent chance for a full-time return offer. It is notoriously difficult to switch banks as internships end because everyone else also wants to switch banks around that time, so unless you get lucky or the hiring market is extremely strong, you’re taking a big chance.

  65. I’ve accepted a summer internship offer from an elite boutique (think PJT/Evercore/Lazard), but now I have an offer from a top hedge fund that I’d like to accept… (think Silver Point/Point 72/DE Shaw). What am I to do? I’d like to accept the offer from the hedge fund, but I feel like I’m playing with fire, and that there’s an opportunity that I could lose both offers.

    1. I would recommend sticking with the elite boutique offer. You can always move from banking to the HF; it’s harder to do the reverse, especially if you renege on the IB offer and somehow get in trouble over it.

  66. M&Aconfused

    If I did IB for a summer and didn’t like it but received a FT offer, and wanted to move to economic consulting, how risky would reneging be? Neither offer would be from OCR.

    1. If you do not care about IB and have no plans for moving into it in the future, reneging presents very little risk, especially if you did not win the offer via your school.

  67. Hi Brian,

    I just had a quick question on my situation and I wanted to get your insight. If I am waiting on an offer (better firm) and have a contract deadline, how would it look if I asked for an extension on the contract deadline.

    1. It’s normally not a great idea, but if you think you have a solid chance of getting a better offer, you can certainly do it. Not worthwhile for an incrementally better offer, though.

  68. Hi Brain,

    Thank you so much for the article. I have accepted a BB IBD offer (think CS, UBS, Barclays) at HK after my internship there, but I just got JPM offer at NYC and SF for one of their coverage groups. Do you think it would be worth to renege the offer? I really like the people in the firm I intern with though. In the future, I want to join a VC and I think firms in SF and NYC would provide better exit opportunities? Thank you again.

    1. Yes, reneging is probably worth it in that case if you understand the risks. VC exits would be quite difficult from HK but much easier from SF and a bit easier from NYC.

  69. Hi Brian,

    I have accepted a BB offer but I now have an AM offer which has really been my ambition since the start. What are your thoughts on reneging a B.B. offer for AM. Do you think the bank is likely to go a-wall? I did let AM HR I had the BB offer and I was accepting.

    1. Is it at the same bank? If so, then yes, you might have a problem. If it’s at a different bank or firm, you can probably do this without the sky falling (as large banks and AM firms don’t necessarily communicate about job candidates).

      1. Thanks Brian, it is a pure asset management firm, not at the B.B.
        Thank you for your advice!

  70. Hi Brian,

    Thank you for your insightful article! I have accepted a PWM grad role for an European BB in London following the internship, but now I have received another offer for an AM grad role for one prestigious asset manager in London(non-bank). I really want to do more analytical stuff compared to managing relationships, so I strongly prefer the AM role. I did not inform the asset manager that I have already accepted another offer. Would it be risky for me to renege the PWM offer? Many thanks!

  71. I am currently a final year student and will graduate in June 2018. I want to start working full time in 2018.

    I have received offers from two firms (“Firm A” and “Firm B”)

    Firm A is for a Front Office role, however this offer is a SA position which runs from June – Aug 2018. The return offer rate during the past few years is approx 50%

    Firm B is for a Middle Office role, however this is a FT position which starts in Sep 2018.

    If I receive a return offer from Firm A, FT will likely start in summer 2019, so I could just start working at Firm B in Sep 2018, stay there for a year then quit in 2019 and start working at Firm A.

    If I do not receive a return offer from Firm A I can just start working at Firm B in Sep 2018 and stay there for a few years.

    As there is no overlap, if I accept both offers I am able to fulfill both commitments without reneging, therefore would it be “OK” to accept both offers?

    I understand both firms might have their hesitations (both firms might question my commitment), would it be preferable to be upfront and inform both firms about the situation, or should I not mention it?

    1. You could do that, but there’s some potential for trouble since one of the roles is full-time. You probably shouldn’t say anything since doing so would result in even more problems for you. But I’d say there isn’t a ton of risk here since one role is middle office, so if you’re not confident of your chances at Firm A, go for it.

  72. Hey Brian,

    I accepted an internship offer about a month ago from a full-service investment bank (Jefferies/WF/Nomura type). However, I just ended up getting an offer in consulting from MBB. How bad would reneging be in this instance?

    1. I think it’s fine.

  73. Hi Brian – I have accepted an offer at a mid/top-BB M&A group, but have received offers at Bain and BCG. Would it be bad to renege? Do you think bankers would call consultants? The firm also didn’t follow my schools recruiting policy and gave me an exploding offer when it is not supposed to. Advice?

    1. Why would you ever renege in that situation? Bain and BCG offer no advantage over a BB bank unless you want to stay in consulting long-term or move to a normal company. They are far worse for traditional PE/HF exit opportunities.

      1. Thanks Brian. Makes sense. I will think more about it. If I decide to make the jump, however, what are your thoughts on reneging as well as repercussions? Thanks.

        1. It is a bad idea to renege in that scenario for the reasons mentioned in the comment above: Bain and BCG are worse for finance-related exit opportunities. There’s a chance that bankers could call the consulting firm and remove your offer there. Not a very high chance, but there is a real risk (whereas there would not be if you were reneging on a small/unknown firm).

  74. What’re your thoughts on reneging from a PE firm to do IB? Would they technically be considered to be in the same industry? PE firm is small so would be hard to confront everyone there.

    1. If the PE firm is small, that is fine.

  75. Hi Brian,
    I have received a SA return offer for research at a middle market firm that expires in a week, but 100% want to pursue IB next summer. Two questions: how risky is it to continue networking/interviewing in IB at other firms after accepting the offer (in terms of the return offer coming up in interviews, interviewers reaching out to original firm for a reference, etc), and how risky is it to actually make the switch if I obtain an IB offer?
    Thanks, Max

    1. I don’t think it’s risky to make the switch if you receive an IB offer at a larger bank, but there is a decent chance this firm could figure out what you’re doing. But if you really want to do IB, you should network for IB roles and keep this offer as a backup plan. Try to limit what you say in emails so that nothing compromising can be forwarded (i.e., don’t directly ask about jobs, just say that you’re interested in the person’s background, current group, etc. and want to learn more).

  76. odellbeckjr

    I need your advice. What do I do if I received a return offer from an elite boutique (and signed b/c I had only a few weeks to sign) but just now received an offer from a top BB (think top 3). Is reneging the EB for the BB too risky?

    1. Personally, I wouldn’t do that. The potential gain is not worth the risk.

  77. Hi, I just received a full time offer following the summer internship in a top 3 bank but I did not end up in the desk I wanted. I got macro research but decided I want to do trading (I did no full rotations in trading, just shadowing and networking). At the time I was told about the outcome I acted extremely grateful and happy but after I got home I realised that I have doubts whether I should even sign the contract for research. What would you do if you were in my shoes:

    1. sign and keep the offer in case I won’t be able to find the desk I want elsewhere
    2. decline straightaway

    I feel like whatever I do will put me on the “Blacklist” because I already acted committed.

    1. Take the offer. You don’t want to risk a real return offer just because you don’t like your desk that much.

  78. Hi Brian,

    I have two SA BB offers, one of which I accepted. However, that role was in Asset Management but I found out that Capital Markets (the one I just received) is what I would like to pursue instead. Should I renege in this case? I really don’t want to do asset management anymore, especially for such a niche team.

  79. I’ve accepted a temp-to-hire MO position (fixed income post-execution) at a BB (a location not in NYC) and may receive an offer from a small real estate company doing actual finance.

    The staffing agency would be paying me an ok hourly hourly wage to work at the BB whereas the CRE job would be a good permanent salary. Do you think this is reasonable justification?

  80. helloworld

    Do you think it would be OK to renege a financial services company (think something along the lines of S&P/Reuters/Bloomberg) for a position at FO BB? Would you say the potential downside is serious?

    1. Yes. Low potential downside.

  81. somerandomperson

    Thanks for the post.

    I’m in a rather awkward situation as I know you have mentioned that it is a poor idea to jump from BB to BB, but the current offer I have requires me to train in an offshore location for two years at roughly 55% of the market rate before becoming a normal analyst and returning back to my home location.

    Would you recommend reneging if I were to receive an offer that allows me to work locally at another BB (and at a far higher rate)? Or do you think reneging is reneging regardless of the situation?

    1. Reneging would make sense in that situation (if you receive a superior offer at another BB at a higher rate).

  82. Love the article, thank you! It was very helpful.

    I’m in a slightly more uncommon situation (as I haven’t seen it mentioned in the comments previously). I’m actually in IT, and am planning to move from a IBAB bank to the Telecomms industry (to a ‘BB’ of that industry). I originally accepted the IBAB job as it was my only offer at the time and I was worried about not having a full-time job after I graduated. Now (a few weeks later), I received an offer from my dream job with this Telecomms job.

    Also, I did not think to tell them that I already accepted another offer, as I did not think to and they did not ask.

    Should I renege? Would a bank attempt to contact anyone in that industry?

    Thank you!

    1. There’s about a 0.000001% chance of getting in trouble in this situation, so you can renege.

  83. Robert C.

    Hi Brian,

    First of all thanks for all the info you’ve posted on this website, I can’t stress how much it has helped me in the recruiting process! I’m currently a junior based in Asia, and a few months ago I accepted a BB back office offer (think GS, MS, JPM). I’m looking to pursue a front office role in the future and fortunately, I received a FO summer internship offer at a reputable bank in Asia last week. Ideally, I would like to leverage the FO internship this year to help me with SA /FT interviews at BB’s next year. My main concern is that would reneging at this point in time severely diminish my chances of getting through to the interview stages at other BB’s next year? Also, would you recommend calling HR and tell them you’d like to renege, or would it be better to inform them through email (and risk the email being forwarded to other banks)? Would really appreciate your advice on this!

    1. It’s worth reneging in this case to go from a BO to FO internship. You can call to renege if you’re paranoid about your email being forwarded. You are taking a chance that you may not be able to recruit for FO roles at the top banks as a result of doing this, but it’s worth the risk in this case.

  84. vERONICA

    Hi Brian – I am trying to decide if I should renege on this situation:

    I have accepted and signed an offer from a well respected MM in NYC in their M&A group, but I kept recruiting and got an offer from JP Morgan in nyc in one if its coverage groups (a mid-tier coverage group that I did really feel that passionate about) The 2 positions are all full time positions, difference is that the M&A position is a first-year analyst position but the JPM one is a Junior analyst position (one year below 1st year and they convert you to 1st yr once 1 year passes, but I know this group’s conversion rate is 100% for the past 2 years from a reliable source), so I am not sure now as to whether I should renege?

    Also I should mention that I accepted the MM offer back in Dec and just got the offer from BB, so if I renege it would be late in the game and it would be in late March..

    What do you think Brian? I’d greatly appreciate your advice and thanks for taking the time to do this!!

    1. I would renege because an MM firm to JPM is a pretty big leap, even if you come in as a Junior Analyst rather than a true 1st year.

      1. vERONICA

        Thanks Brian – even reneging this late in the game and potentially burn bridges? I got first round interviews there because of a friend’s dad and if I do that, I think he might not be happy about it. And the HR and all those bankers interviewed me there might be angry so the risk is high here, if I renege, how would you recommend me to go about this?

        Also, I think I will like my work better there since I will be doing M&A but at JPM is more of a coverage group that I don’t really like that much(I did an internship before in that field but I did not really like it), do you think this is an issue?

        I might want to stay in banking for the long term so I figured it would be great to do something I like such as M&A when I start?

        Thanks again Brian!

        1. It sounds like you prefer the MM bank, so if that is the case, you should just accept that offer. There is no “nice” way to renege. It’s like a divorce – people are going to be mad and upset no matter what you do, so you have to be sure it’s worth it. If friends/family will be upset and you don’t want to do coverage, then accept the MM offer and think about moving to a larger bank once you’ve been there for a while.

  85. cannot disclose

    Brian – what to do if a friend accepted summer internship offer at Real Estate PE (boutique) and recently got another offer at a BB firm?


    1. If you want to ask a question about yourself, say that it’s about yourself and not “a friend” (Why even bother when you’re anonymous anyway? This is why I’ve started to hate running this site.)

      If you want to stay in real estate long term, stick with the first offer. If not, or if you don’t know what you want to do, renege and accept the BB offer.

  86. Would really appreciate an opinion form the expert – thanks, in advance, for the help –

    I accepted an offer about 1.5 months ago for a generalist IB Analyst position in M&A at a “middle-market” firm that is not extremely well known and is in a non-NYC city. They have 5+ offices in the US and UK, (biggest office is 60 people), they have good deal flow, a focused training/professional development program for new analysts, pay about 30% below the street, and focus on deals $30mm-$400mm.

    I have a final round interview next week for an IB analyst position in the Public Finance group at a well known, upper middle market firm (think Wells, Jefferies, Piper Jaffray, Cowen) in NYC. Pay is on par with the street, the Public Finance group is organized under the Investment Banking umbrella here (as a coverage group) and is growing.

    I am really just looking for the best opportunity for professional development, and because of personal preference (where my family is, etc.) I would much rather be in NYC.

    Would really appreciate an objective opinion! Thanks!! – Gotta like M&I!

    1. I think it makes sense to renege in that situation, if you get the offer. It would make sense to stick with the original offer only if there is a good chance of moving or transferring to NYC quickly.

  87. Hi guys,

    I accepted an offer from the MM bank that I interned at, but am going through an interview process with a top BB. I’m nervous that the BB may reach out to the MM bank BEFORE offers are handed out. Would they ever do that? I’d think that since bankers are so busy they won’t bother to even read the candidates’ resumes before the superday, but I just feel paranoid.

    If I do accept the offer from the BB, is it possible for the MM bank to call up the BB out of spite and tell them to cancel my offer? Should I be clear with the BB that I already have an offer if they ask me? Or should I tell them even if they don’t ask me?


    1. I just wanted to clarify, this is for FT recruiting. I’m currently a college senior. Neither of the positions came through OCR, and I frankly don’t care of my school bans me from OCR since I’ll be graduating soon anyways.

      1. I would probably just tell the BB that you accepted the MM offer a long time ago, and you’re willing to renege on it to accept an offer at the BB, but you want to make sure they’re fine with that first. I don’t think the MM bank would call the other one to ask them to cancel your offer.

  88. Great read!
    Would you regard the danger of getting banned from OCR as relevant if you are a recent grad and are not enrolled in university any longer?

    1. No. It’s less relevant then.

  89. Hi, thanks for the great article. I quite enjoyed it.
    In December of last year I went through the recruitment process for a non Bulge Bracket (but nevertheless quite large) investment back and got a 2 year rotational offer that would start in September. Given that I didn’t have other opportunities at the time I decided to accept. Now I got an internship offer in a completely different industry (Consulting) which could potentially turn into an offer. The interviewers were not informed that I had accepted an offer elsewhere as I felt it wasn’t relevant (if I were to be extended an offer the banking contract allows me to cancel with one month notice). Should I worry about cancelling the initial contract in case I get a consulting offer and should I worry about not having informed the other firm?
    Thank you in advance

    1. It’s not an ideal situation to be in, but you can just accept the consulting internship offer and see what happens with a full-time offer… don’t cancel the 2-year contract until you know what is happening. That is a bigger problem than not having told the consulting firm about the other offer.

  90. Thank you for this article. I’m trying to make a decision about this right now. I received an internship offer from a large asset manager (back office role) and was only given a week to sign. I didn’t have any other offers so I signed. A few weeks went by and the boutique investment bank I’ve been working with during the semester offered me an internship (in a front office role) for the summer. Should I reneg? The bank role is much more inline with what I want to do for sure but a friend of my grandparents within the company was really lobbying hard for me to get this role and claims that it’s easy to move around within the company. You guys have any thoughts?

    1. Yes, renege. I doubt that it’s easy to move around, as it’s almost always difficult to move from the back office to the front office.

  91. I’ve accepted and signed an internship contract with a BB (think CS, UBS, Barclays) for the summer but just got a call from one of the biggest asset/investment managers in the industry. I know it’s too early to worry about this but would it be worth it to go to the interview, and if I get the offer, renege on the BB offer? (I really want some buy-side exposure before graduation)

    1. It depends on your previous experience and future goals… if you don’t already have an IB internship at a large bank, this is not a good idea. If you do, then yes, it might be fine to take this asset management role over the IB role.

  92. I am in a bit of a sticky situation. I accepted a corp fin internship offer a month ago but just got an offer for a banking internship. I want to renege on the corp fin offer, however, I never brought it up to the bank that I already accepted the corp fin offer. Had I read this article sooner, I would have been more transparent from the get-go. That being said, do you have any advice on what I should do now? Should I just keep quiet that I accepted the other one initially?

    1. Don’t tell the bank. Just renege on the corp fin offer and accept the bank’s offer.

  93. Hey Brian (or anyone who may be able to help),

    I have an exploding offer for a MM firm in a Midwest city I am not excited about for a non-IB role.

    I am in the process for several IB internships at good banks in cities I am excited about (LA, SF, NYC, etc.), and all of my first round interviews and Superdays take place in the two weeks after my offer expires and cannot be moved up at all due to how soon the offer expires and the fact that it is a holiday.

    I give it a 50-50 combined chance of getting an offer from one of the other five places, all of which I would much prefer. Would you recommend rejecting the offer, or accepting and then reneging?

    1. It’s still probably better to accept the offer and then renege, if necessary, just because *not* having an internship is the worst-case possible scenario these days.

  94. Hi Brian,

    Thank you for the great website! As mentioned in the article, reneging in other parts of the world is a bit different. Can you expand on what you mean by that, particularly for Hong Kong? Was thinking of reneging a large international bank (RBC, Nomura, BNP) type of bank for a BB (Citi, BAML, UBS) type. Does signing a contract mean anything in that part of the world? Thanks!

    1. I don’t think it makes a big difference if you’re reneging on an IBAB (See: for a BB bank. But it may or may not be a good move because capital markets deals tend to be more common in HK, and some of the banks you mentioned are strong in ECM/DCM.

      1. Alexander Qu

        Thank you Brian, great to see you still take your valuable time to respond. Mind expanding on the banks with stronger DCM platform? I imagine the BBs, along with Nomura probably are.

      2. Also enjoyed the IBAB classification, and the fact that you couldnt classify Macquarie

  95. Hi Brian,

    I recently accepted an internship offer at a MM bank in the midwest (in a city I have no interest living in) in a specific area of focus that is often pigeonholed. I’m a non-target junior who managed to make it to a few Superdays but ending up not getting an offer at my top BB choice. At the time, it was my only offer and I panicked.

    Now, I’ve had multiple phone interviews and 2 Superdays at a BB in NYC I really like. The positions are completely unrelated to the Midwest internship. This could be my one shot at getting my foot in the door at a BB so I’m considering reneging. Do you think it would significantly hurt my career after graduation?

    1. No. Renege if it helps you.

  96. Hi Brian,

    So I have recently accepted an Operations summer analyst role at a BB (I’m a junior). The main reason I accepted the offer was because of the deadline that I couldn’t extend and I didn’t want to be left with nothing for this summer. However, I now have two IBD interviews and a Commercial banking interview. I’m really confused as to what I should do and how negative reneging on my offer (if I choose to do so) would be for me and my career? Additionally, the operations role is at a BB that I see myself working at in the future if given the opportunity. Thanks in advance for your help!


    1. I don’t think it’s the end of the world if you renege in that situation. So you might as well proceed with those other interviews – but you’ll probably have to let them know that you’ve accepted the operations offer elsewhere and will have to renege on it to proceed with the offer process there.

  97. Hi, thanks for the article. I had received a BB SA S&T in HK. If I get an offer from a BB SA S&T in NY of the same tier, should I renege? I want to work in NY after graduation and am afraid that going to HK might pigeonhole me there. Since this year, FT recruiting is down in NY and the analyst class is being filled mostly with the interns.

    1. Yes, I would say so


    HI Brian, I hope you can find the time to respond to this. I’ve accepted a full time S&T offer at a MM Bank about 2 weeks ago. I had been applying to top 10 Business schools (MBA programs) without thinking I had a shot. I recently received an offer to interview for one of them. I’m not sure S&T is where I want to be long term as I see it as a shrinking industry (I’m in my late 20s and come from an operational background). I’m wondering what your thoughts would be on reneging this offer in the event I am offered acceptance?

    1. It depends a bit on your previous work experience. If you have solid experience and you have no plans to go back into finance in the future, reneging on the offer won’t kill you. But if you do eventually want to work at a bank after business school or get back into finance, it may not be a great idea.



  99. Hi M&I,

    I was wondering if you could give me specific advice for my situation. Basically, I signed and accepted a B4 accounting return offer after my summer internship, due to its pressing deadline and my lack of confidence that I’d find something better at the time. However, a week later I received an invite to interview for a top bank’s IBD analyst program. As IBD is clearly my dream (and the pay should be more than double) and I hate accounting, I know I’d wanna shoot myself later on if I don’t take this opportunity.

    However, the conflict here is that I had put the accounting internship on my resume that I used to apply for the investment bank. In addition, said investment bank sent me a generic employment application form which forces me to list my references and supervisors from my last 5 jobs, which means I’d have to give away my manager at the accounting firm. My biggest fear right now is that even if I were to get this IB dream job, IF they do contact my references or the old firm in any way to conduct a background check, I’d be completely screwed as the B4 would then just tell the bank that I’m a reneger, and both jobs will blow up. I’d also get a ban from OCR.

    Given my situation, how should I proceed? I really don’t want to give up this IB interview opportunity. Right now, I’m just planning to proceed as if nothing happened and hope that the bank doesn’t actually call the B4 that I summered at.

    From your experience, how common is it that IBs actually check references (particularly for junior year summer internships) and contacts the summer firms of incoming analysts? Thanks.

    1. They could check, but it’s more common to do so in the final stages or when you’ve already won an offer.

      There is some risk, so one approach might be to skip the manager at your accounting firm and just list the internships before that. But if you’ve already listed it on your resume, that may not work.

      I would just proceed with your plan and interview at the bank, and if your manager asks about it, say it was a mistake or it was for an application you submitted a long time ago and is no longer active.

      1. Thanks for the reply Brian. So regarding the interview, I’ve actually moved on to super day at this point, and I’ve gotten more interview offers lined up. I’m starting to regret more and more about having accepted my B4 return offer.

        I don’t actually care that much about what my manager at the accounting firm thinks, because I want to get into the bank. So if I wait ’til the time he brings it up to me, it likely means that the bank has already called him and he has already informed the bank that I had a commitment, which may or may not screw up my offer.

        My real concern is, how do I prevent the BANK from knowing this or calling him? I already put down his contact info because it was unavoidable. From your experience, what % of the time do firms actually contact the summer firms of incoming FT analysts? And do you think they’d care that I’d renege an accounting offer for IB?

        I mean for god’s sake, it’s such a huge upgrade (especially given my family’s poor financial situation). People have to understand!

        1. If you already put down his information, you can’t do much at this point to prevent the bank from calling him. But I don’t think the bank would care that you’re reneging on a Big 4 offer. They probably won’t even call him because banks tend to be disorganized with hiring.

  100. Thank you for your advice. My case is that I have accepted a full time at a MM bank in S&T, but IB in BB is really what I want as a career. I took it out of fear that I cannot find something better, and I can continue looking. After signing I realized the situation is much more difficult than I thought, and I don’t want to move to that city at all. Can I still continue applying and interviewing for BB banks while in school, and should I tell them up front that I already took an offer elsewhere? Also,if it increases my chances, would applying in different cities make a difference?

    1. Yes, you can continue applying and interviewing, but you should tell them that you have accepted an offer at a smaller bank, so you would have to renege on it to accept an offer with them.

      Or, you can just not tell them that and take the risk. To be honest, I don’t think it’s a huge risk if you’re applying to different-sized banks in different cities in different divisions. Yes, applying to different locations may help.

  101. Hi there,

    Although you’ve mentioned not to renege on a full time offer for an internship, what would your advise be for a big4 FT offer for a BB front office summer internship?
    Also if the FT job starts (a few months) after the internship finishes, would it be okay to renege after (hopefully) receiving a FT offer from the bank?

    1. Yes, if you’re serious about IB. You are taking a risk even if you get the FT offer first, but it’s less of a risk than if you reneged on another bank’s offer.

  102. Hi, great article. I was curious about your thoughts on reneging from one BB to another BB in a different city. For example, reneging on an offer in North America in order to pursue an offer in Hong Kong. This is for a SA internship.


    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes this makes sense. I believe you can say that you plan to work in another location instead so this may not sound as “bad” to the firm you’re reneging on.

  103. Jason Hall

    I recently received an offer from a BB (think Citi, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank) but in Corporate Banking. I was given only a week to accept, but I have a final round interview at another BB in Investment Banking a couple days after the acceptance deadline. I think I like the culture at the first BB, where I received the offer, more, but I think I might want to do IB as a career more than Corporate Banking. How do you think I should best handle the situation? THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR HELP!

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I’d try your best to extend your deadline by a few more days with the first BB, and I’d also let the other BB know of your offer and see if they can expedite your offer (if they were to extend you one.) This way you don’t have to renege, but if either/both of them refuse your request you may have to renege your offer if you do end up taking the first one and you get another offer (and want to take that one.)

  104. Accepted a FT offer at a MM earlier this month. After accepting, I entered into an interview process with a BB – top three if you consider JPM, MS, and GS to be top three. Did not tell the BB that I already accepted another offer and believe they are under the impression that I have not accepted yet. Advice? Should I bring it up before the superday or wait to see if I land the offer first to bring it up after.
    Honestly, took the advice from bankers at the MM where I accepted the offer to ‘accept now and if something better comes up then just renege.’

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes I’d see if you land the offer (assuming you really want to work for the BB). If you don’t care for the MM that much and you do receive an offer from the BB, yes you can renege but you may risk burning bridges.

      1. In the end I did renege and took the WM position. It turned out to be in the “Products” team and was sat on the trading floor carrying out deal execution and product research and offered much more interesting work / networking opportunities than the sales / relationship management side of PWM that M&I seems to focus on. In fact the work is more similar to the sales side of Sales and Trading albeit with Private Banking clients (and therefore lower deal flow).

        I was wondering if there were any plans to write an article sometime on this division; it shows a very different side to WM that could be important to people who are struggling to break into more prestigious roles, or just want to do something different. Is this simply too niche a team to warrant its own article?

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Tom, thanks for your note. It is not too niche. If you’d like to be interviewed, let us know and we will reach out to you.

          1. Sure I’d be willing to be interviewed; contact me by email

  105. ER intern


    I got an Equity Research internship in a boutique bank in South East Asia. A few days ago i got offered by a relative (Ex- IBD bulge bracket bank) to intern for his own company.

    ER internship – (End of June – End of Aug)
    2nd internship – (mid Aug -mid Sept)

    I want to make it for both, but they kinda overlap. If i call up my ER internship bank and tell them i’ve got another internship and would like to shorten the period for this internship would it work? How would u suggest i pull this off?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes I may do so. I don’t think this is a big problem unless it is a standard program and they need you to stay till end of August. In this case I’d call up the second company to delay the internship.

  106. Thank you for your advice. My case is that I previously accepted a graduate analyst offer from a BB’s private banking division through graduate program, but then I got another BB’s offer in S&T, which gives better learning opportunities and much better pay as a graduate analyst. I’m considering renege on the previous offer. What’s your suggestions and opinions on this case? Thank you!

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Reneging is not always the best option. However, if you really want to do S&T and don’t mind burning bridge with the other BB’s PWM division then yes I may take the S&T offer and renege. However, when you renege, try to be responsive, very appreciative of the opportunity so you do your best to “lessen” the damage. You can just tell them that you’ve changed your mind and decided that PWM isn’t the best fit for you. You’d also need to make sure you’ve signed the contract etc with the other firm first.

  107. Thoughts on reneging for a paid intership at MM firm when I’ve already accepted an unpaid offer at small boutique?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      We don’t recommend reneging if possible. However, since you’re talking a paid vs. unpaid role, and a MM vs. a small boutiques, I’d say it may not be a bad idea to do so especially given financial reasons.

  108. With summer internships; and an aim to try and spin the experience to apply for IB graduate programs, would it be worth reneging on a commercial banking position for a private wealth management offer (both at large banks)?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      If both are for BBs, I probably wouldn’t renege, unless you know for sure you don’t want to be in commercial banking, and that you want to work in PWM.

      1. Thanks. In regards to the commercial / wealth management question is PWM not considered more prestigious (and therefore more useful for graduate recruiting)? I’ve read and spoken to several people who’ve made switches from PWM to IBD or sales and trading but not about people switching from commercial banking to these positions?

        Just to be clear this commercial banking position doesn’t involve retail or small business accounts its essentially corporate banking for mid-sized business (£2 million to £2 billion market cap)

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Yes I’d say PWM is considered more prestigious versus commercial banking.

  109. I’ve accepted a valuation job offer with an accounting firm (not directly through my school but through alumni referral). A few people at school know that I received an offer, but I didn’t admit to anyone that I’ve accepted it. (They might now believe it but I don’t know for sure.)
    Now I just received and accepted a campus interview with a well-known middle market investment bank through the school. Both are full-time positions with start date in the summer.
    I got a bit nervous and kept thinking what if the school or a classmate or the firm where I accepted an offer finds out what I’m doing. Should I be worried? What could possibly happen if someone finds out? Should I just quietly turn down the interview and pretend nothing has happened and stop interviewing elsewhere? My goal is really to do IB in the first place. I’d appreciate your advice on this.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I wouldn’t be worried but I’d be discrete about it, because if someone on campus/your career centre finds out you may risk losing two roles. If you do plan to turn down the interview, you don’t need to worry too much and pretend nothing happened. However, if you plan to interview with the second firm, I’d be very quiet and discrete and see where the interviewing process takes you. If you really want to do IB, it maybe wise to interview with the bank to see what your options are and decide later should you get an offer at the bank.

  110. I accepted an associate internship for corporate banking BB in the US.

    However, another offer just came yesterday for IBD BB in HK. Essentially it’s my dream job, but location wise, HK is not my preference.
    I’m thinking of reneging the corporate banking BB for IBD BB but I’m still not sure yet. If I do renege, would US BB be able to contact HK BB about this situation?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      If you really want to be in the US, I’d stay in the US and see if you can transfer internally from corporate banking. I know it can potentially be challenging, but moving from HK to US, unless you have a US citizenship, can also be challenging. If you really want IBD, then yes perhaps the IBD role maybe the best route for you. Yes there’s a chance the US BB may contact the HK BB re. the situation but I wouldn’t worry too much about it.

  111. I am a senior graduating from undergrad this upcoming May. I had a summer internship in the Back office of a bulge bracket bank, I received and accepted an offer about 2 months ago for a back office rotational program. I did not sign up to work for a specific team or a specific manager. All of my communication has been with HR. I recently received an offer from a smaller bank, on the cusp between MM and BB, to work in the front office. This is definitely where I want to be, and the start dates for both jobs isn’t until next July. Do you think it would upset the BB that much if I were to renege, even if its this far in advance? What do you think is the best method to go about doing so?
    I appreciate any input, thanks in advance.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes you may burn a few bridges but if since it is for this summer they will still have time to choose their candidates. So if you really want to do front office work I’d say go for it though there’s a risk word may get around. I’d suggest you be very diplomatic. Make sure you’ve signed the contract with the IB before you renege. And when you renege call HR and explain. Be brief – just say you’ve changed your mind and realized that BO isn’t where you want to be this summer. Apologize profusely and say that in hindsight you don’t think its fair you work with them this summer since they may benefit from a candidate who can truly enjoy being there (and hence contribute more)

      1. Thanks for the help

  112. I accepted and signed an offer from company A but am now regretting it, and prefer company B. Both banks are BB and applied through headhunters. Recruiter for company B does not know I signed company A already, he still thinks I’m considering both offers. Both recruiters know the companies involved. How should I handle the situation?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      So you’re saying that recruiter at company B knows recruiter at company A and vice versa? First I wouldn’t do anything unless you already have an offer with company B. If so, tricky situation. If you renege company A there’s a chance word may get around to company B. However, if you really can’t stand company A then maybe it’s worth the risk but you need to be very diplomatic and be prepared that word may get around (and you may risk your 2nd offer). But if the difference is marginal (i.e. both front office same division, salary similar, you like both teams) I wouldn’t renege.

      1. Yes, both headhunters and companies know I’m choosing between them. But company B don’t know that I signed A, should I just tell headhunter B I signed A but prefer company B to see if they will support the decision. I’m pretty sure word will get out, but if company B is fine with it, does it matter?

        1. M&I - Nicole

          This is a very tricky situation. It depends on whether you trust the headhunter or not. If you truly trust him/her then yes you can tell him that you signed with A. However, there maybe a risk that he’ll let company B know and they rescind that offer to you. So you really have the weigh the options. I can’t say because I am not familiar with your relationships with the two headhunters and the companies. But yes talking to headhunter B (since he/she’s a middleman) is a good idea IF you trust him/her.

  113. I accepted a FT offer with bank A and received a FT offer from bank B (BB) recently. I would like to renege on bank A but am concerned since both banks are in the same city. Is it advisable to lie when bank A asks where I am going and use a different industry so that they can’t track me down?

    1. I don’t think it will even matter since they’ll easily find out anyway. I would just keep it short and vague and not say anything about where you’re going… and be really sure you want to do this, because unless it’s a massive difference in size/brand recognition it may not be worth it.

      1. Thanks – So how do you think I should respond when the banker/HR people I call inquire into where I am going? And also curious to know why you think it is so easy for them to find out.

        1. M&I - Nicole

          I’d just keep it vague and short as Brian has suggested. I wouldn’t tell them the name of the firm until you’ve signed and everything is set and stone. Because the industry is very small.

  114. Hi,

    If I have an offer in NYC at a BB, but would like to recruit for London for full-time due to personal reasons, how would reneging the US offer be viewed in the UK? Would that be problematic in the UK as well?


    1. M&I - Nicole

      Assuming the UK office doesn’t know, no I don’t think it’s a big problem. I’d speak with the guys in NY and be honest and tell them you need to be in London due to XX reason and that you have to renege the offer.

  115. Thanks

  116. Hi Nicole,

    I’m currently working in a leading KPO in India.
    I have recently got an offer from a boutique IB.

    But the issue is they want me to work as an intern for six months, adding to it they are not offering any hike too. Is it wise to quit a full time job in KPO to join IB as an intern without hike.

    Please guide me on this.


    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes, especially if you want to work in IB and you can think about this on the longer term.

  117. Hi,

    So I am a student in Europe and signed a FT offer around 3 weeks ago with a US BB. I just got a call from an elite boutique regarding the interview process for a FT job with them.

    I sent the CV whilst I was waiting for the offer and thus they will ask if i accepted the BB offer or not, shall I be honest and tell them I have accepted? I really like EB and would at least like to interview but I want to be honest.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      If you want to have an interview with the boutique then no I will not tell them you’ve accepted another offer before the interview. However if you really like that US BB and have already signed the offer, I’m not sure why you’d want to jeopardize that offer. Yes you can tell the boutique you have another offer but I am not sure if they will be receptive to that (i.e. they may tell you you can’t interview and give the slot to someone else)

  118. Hi Nicole,
    Thank you for your post, it is really helpful!
    I got a return offer from my IBD summer internship and I have signed it already. But now I got a buyside interview – which is from my dream company. Should I mention anything about my return offer during the interview? At how much chance would the buyside firm do a reference check? (I am sure the buyside ppl know some analysts/associates/MD in the previous bank, cus they worked on some deal tgt)

    Looking forward to your reply. Thanks a lot.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes they may do a background check and there’s a chance word may get around. I’d still go on the interview and see how it goes. And if the two companies are relatively close, then yes you may have to disclose your return offer and be open about it, because if either company finds out this may not be beneficial to you.

  119. Hi,
    I have just got an offer from a BB IBD after my summer internship (not like GS/JPM that kind but still quite big). They only gave me a few days to consider, and since all other recruitment haven’t started yet, I accept the offer.

    However, after the summer internship, I don’t think IBD is something I want (cus of the long hours and high pressure). I think Management Associate program in other banks / top corporates / buy-side will suit me better. If I keep applying and interviewing, will the rumors spread back to my IBD team and piss them off? (I am currently in an Asian city and the finance world is pretty small here)

    What suggestions do you have for me? Do you think it worth the risk?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes you can keep interviewing, but yes there’s a chance word may get around. If you really don’t want the IB role, then yes it maybe worth the risk. If you still want to do IB, then it may not. Perhaps you can just apply to a selected few firms and be discrete about it

      1. Hi Nicole – thank you for your reply!
        Now I only orally accepted the offer, the official contract will be out in a few weeks.
        I really can’t make up my mind. Does doing IBD for one year then exit make sense for you?

        Or would it be better if I just tell them I am going to withdraw before I sign the contract?

        Really appreciate if you could advise on that.

        1. M&I - Nicole

          This is subjective. If you have other better offers on hand then yes you may want to renege. Otherwise, I may stick to what you have. Reneging may burn bridges though; I don’t advise it in general

  120. I accepted an offer at firm ‘A’. But 3 weeks later (1 week before my start date at firm ‘A’), I got an offer from firm ‘B’ in a different city where I really want to be.

    The firms / pay are similar but the location is what stands out. If I join firm ‘A’, I will eventually try to move to the other location in 2-3 years.

    What do you think? Is this a situation where reneging makes sense?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes, and you may have to do so diplomatically. There’s really no best way to do this because you’re backing out of a commitment so people may not necessarily like that.

  121. Would you renege on your first offer (that was a finance position but non-IB) if you later received an investment banking offer at a respectable shop? Suppose this situation arises out of undergrad and you have always wanted to work in investment banking? Thanks

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Perhaps. I’d do so diplomatically to not burn bridges.

  122. Peter Parker

    Hi, i have 2 offers. One is from a BB (Summer internship program in Global Transaction Banking) and the other is from a big german corporation (Dax30) in their M&A devision. Which one would be better, to break into investment banking? I have to add, that I accepted the offer from the corporation and I am thinking about switching to BB.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      If you want to work for a corporation, I’d stick to the German company. If you want to understand what working in a BB is like yes you may want to renege your offer. I have to add that it can be challenging to move from transaction banking into IB especially if you don’t have the experience. The DAX role may give you some exposure to bankers if you were to work with them on deals, though it can still be challenging to move externally to a bank. You may find that a target MBA in 2 years may help you down the line.

  123. Raimundo

    Hey. I have two summer internship offers in London. My goal is to work in LevFin. “The world’s local bank” first gave me an offer, which I signed. Recently, I got a similar offer from a BB. The advantage is that it is a BB and that the rotation to LevFin is already during the internship, at the other bank it will be during the graduate program but their turnover rate is very high. Actually, the BB is ranked lower in DCM and Leveraged Loas in the latest Bloomberg ranking for EMEA so I was wondering if it is worth cancelling my contract with the world’s local bank. The interviews at the BB were harder, but also more relevant and they really tested you.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I’d say the BB’s name may help you in the long run. Yes if possible, I may renege. Try to do so politically though

      1. Raimundo

        How do I do this. and why would it make so much difference if the BB has less deal flow in EMEA?

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Call up the 1st firm and apologize profusely. Say that situation has changed and you can’t accept the offer (if you choose to renege)

          No I don’t understand your question. What I meant earlier was the BB’s name will open you more doors.

  124. Can you help me?
    As a junior, got an offer at a top 10 IB for summer analyst internship. Got excited at the offer call and was asked, can we take this as a verbal committment? I said yes
    Then got offered by a top 3 bank who asked had I signed anything to which I answered no. I want to take the second offer but need to know what to do. Need to choose by Monday
    Please help

    1. M&I - Nicole


      Well if you made a verbal commitment, it isn’t technically a done deal though you’ve still made a commitment. If you want to take the 2nd offer, I’d go back to the first group asap and tell them you’ve changed your mind. Apologize and tell them you were grateful for the opportunity. I’d also make sure you secure/sign the 2nd offer first before you do the above…

  125. Very interested to see your take on this situation:

    1.) Signed an FT offer at a BB for a specialized front office team
    2.) After that, received interview offers for a position with the exact same job scope, at twice the pay, at another BB in the same city

    I understand it’s a risk to even commence interviewing but the upside in this case is very significant. What a dilemma – hope someone has some interesting views on this!

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I’d just interview and see how it goes. Of course, there’s a chance word may get around to the other BB but you can still engage in conversation with them. Of course, you may want to be very vigilant. It is risky though. So if you don’t want to risk your first offer, or word getting around, then you can lay low and tell the other BB you accepted the offer, which may sound like the right thing to do…

  126. Hello! Thank you for the article, it’s helpful as always! I come from a target school in the UK, and I recently got an IBD summer internship offer with Morgan Stanley, Hong Kong. Suppose that I get a return offer eventually but I wish to start off my career in London instead. Is it possible to ask MS to transfer me to the UK office? Or should I just apply to another BB in London instead? Thanks?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Congratulations on your internship. Yes you can try though it can be challenging. It is highly likely you may have to go through the recruiting process all over again though I may be wrong.

      1. I see, thank you Nicole.

  127. Johnny Garro

    You say it is a bad idea to try to renege from one BB to another, but everyone that I have talked to (literally everyone) says that I should do so. I have an offer for UBS IBD in NYC. It is for a SA position. I quickly accepted it (just like in your hypothetical example above) but then received notice that I have a spot in a GS final round Superday. Lets say I go to the Superday and receive an offer. Is it really that risky to renege? WSO and other sites bash UBS (which I still don’t understand why. Why not bash Piper or Wells…) which makes me not want to go there. The reputation is horrible becomes the online world ruins it and makes it so. Do you agree? Or do you think UBS is actually a bad place to be and I should try to get into one of the other BBs if I can

    1. Johnny Garro

      The reputation is horrible because*

      Sorry about the typos. I am on my phone

    2. M&I - Nicole

      Johnny, yes it maybe risky to renege because word can get around. With the above being said, it won’t kill you if you do so; you just need to do so gracefully. In terms of whether UBS is a good firm to work for or not, I’d speak with more people in the firm and decide for yourself. I wouldn’t make a decision merely based on what you hear in forums. Of course, if GS extends you an offer, it is very tempting to renege so I can understand.

  128. Hi! So I’m a senior and have just recently accepted an offer for a corporate finance fdp rotation program about a month ago. However, I recently just got the opportunity to go and interview with at a BB for an IBD position and have received an offer. I got this opportunity outside of my school’s career services. Do you think that it’s ok to renege on my corp finance job? Since they’re not in the same field it should be ok right? The only reason why I’m hesitating to do this is that my school has an ethical job search policy where once we accept an offer we’re not allowed to even interview and that if we renege I will be banned from using the career services for the rest of my life. But, I’m a senior….. so I won’t need career services in the future anyways right?

    1. Also will the bank care that I had accepted a corp fin job before? I didn’t tell them I had accepted the corp fin offer.

      1. M&I - Nicole

        Probably, but this is the risk you take.

    2. M&I - Nicole

      I think you’ve answered your question. I’d probably renege gracefully. There is a consequence that your career center may be aware but I wouldn’t worry too much about it at this point if this is what you’re going to do.

  129. My question relate to 2 summer internship offers in the UK.
    I accepted and signed an offer at a “tier 2” bank.
    I got an offer from a “top tier” bank.
    If I sign the second offer and renege the 1st one AFTER, will the 2nd bank be able to “withdraw” the offer given the fact it has already been signed ?
    Thanks a lot

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes they can do that, and this has happened to other people before. They signed a contract and declined another, but the firm they signed with withdrew the offer.

  130. Hi,

    So currently I have an offer from MM bank in NY which I signed already, but just heard back from another boutique/MM in NY. Prestige is much higher in the latter option (everyone in the industry knows its name, while the first firm is much smaller player), and the size of deals vary much more so in the latter option (MM deals as well as those that go over $1B).

    I also think that I should have a better experience as teams are leaner in the second option.

    Would reneging the first option make sense in this case?


    1. M&I - Nicole

      I can understand if you want to renege. Try to do so in a graceful manner and yes it is likely you may burn a bridge but try your best to minimize the “damage”

  131. avid reader

    Ive been recruiting for FT. Up until recently I had no offers. I got my firstoffer with a boutique(employees less than 10) and accepted and signed a document outlining the basic tenets of the offer (salary, startdate, vacation days) because they were going to give it to another finalist if I didn’t (this happened just a few days ago). I just heard back from an elite boutique and got an offer. Not only does it pay better but more importantly exit opportunities will be infinitely easier to find and better. I want to renege but am scared by downside. Also I haven’t told the elite boutique about accepting the other offer. The crucial wording of the document was that ” we mutually agree that you will be an employee at will and that the analyst position is a 2 year program.”

    1. avid reader

      also starting date for either firm wouldn’t be until the summer

    2. M&I - Nicole

      I’d consult a lawyer regarding your document. Is there a clause re. breaking the contract before you start? When is the contract effective? I can’t say because you’ve already signed the contract and a lawyer may be able to give you better suggestions. Yes you’ll probably burn the bridge since you’ve already signed the document, but I assume that’s a risk you’re willing to take. Make sure you get the contract on hand (run it by a lawyer preferably and compare the 2) from the other firm before you do anything.

  132. Hi Nicole,

    So I should call and email right? It would be very bad if I just email? How should I explain the circumstances: that I got another offer and I would regret it very much if I don’t take it?

    Thanks so much.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I’d call and email out of respect for that firm. I’d apologize and tell the firm that you have to renege the offer given change in circumstances. I don’t think you need to disclose too much information. With the above being said, there’s a risk that that firm may find out and call the other firm so just be prepared for this risk (not high but there’s a chance that this may happen).

      1. Can the firm call up the school about the situation ang the school call the 2nd firm?

        Thanks so much.

        1. M&I - Nicole

          It may happen…

  133. Hi,

    I gave the HR a call aroung May about reneging but didn’t send an email since I wasn’t sure how things were working out. Now since I am 100% sure I won’t go to that place to work, should I call again or should I just write an email.

    Moreover, how should my email look regarding this very sensitive information? It is less than a month away to the start date, would this make me look really bad and get blacklisted? The two offers are in different industries by the way.

    Thanks so much,

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I’d email and call the firm to apologize profusely and renege the offer.

      Yes it may be it’s a risk you take.

  134. Hi,

    Suppose I’ve accepted a full-time IBD offer with a BB regional office. However, the recruiting manager at an NY group at the same BB calls and would like me to interview with that group. If the NY office is my preference and I get the offer there, how would I go about reneging when these are two different offices at the same firm?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Whoa. I wouldn’t do that at the same firm (different story if the firms are different). You may be blacklisted. What I’d do is to speak with the recruiting manager at NY and tell them that you’ve accepted a full time IBD offer at the regional office. However your first choice is still NY. Ask him/her if you can still interview and what he/she think you can do with your situation. Be firm and say that you prefer NY over the regional office but you accepted the offer given time constraints.

  135. Hello,
    Say I renege on a FT offer from a top BB and go to MBB consulting. If I ever decide I want to return to PE later down the road, will my decision to renege come back to haunt me?


    1. M&I - Nicole

      I don’t think so. I’d try not to burn the bridge with the BB. I think the IBD experience maybe more useful than the consulting experience if you want to move to PE down the line though.

  136. I am a recent graduate of a MS in Accountancy program. While at the program, I interviewed with the Big-4 and recieved an full time offer I ended up accepting. While at the MSA program, I also applied to MS in Finance programs after I had accepted the offer from a Big 4. I wanted both degrees to make me marketable in the finance/consulting industry because I knew I didn’t want to stay in public accounting for long. Later in the semester I accepted an offer for a MS in Finance program to start 3 months after the MS in Accounting program ended. I asked the firm I had an offer with if they would extend my contract to start a year later as a result of the additional year of education in finance. They obliged and pushed my start date back one year.

    Fast-forward to current time, I am rethinking my decision to start with a Big-4 firm (and accounting in general) as I believe consulting would give me a better start to what I would ultimately would like to do for a long term career. I am mulling over whether 1) I should apply for consulting jobs this fall while at the MS in finance program and whether the Big 4 firm could figure out I was doing so 2) if I were to interview with consulting firms, should I tell them upfront that I have already accepted an offer 3) if I were to get an offer from a consulting firm, would reneging on the Big 4 job make it back to the consulting firm that extended an offer?

    Any comments would be appreciated.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      1. Yes you can apply. I don’t think the big 4 would figure out, though if you do renege on the offer be prepared you’d probably burn a bridge because the big 4 firm has bend over backwards to extend the contract for you
      2. Not really, because they would probably not give you a 2nd round. They’d question why you’re interviewing in the first place.
      3. It may. If you’re in final stages of discussions with the consulting firm, I’d suggest you to call up the big 4 and let them know, ideally the sooner the better (way before your expected starting date).

  137. Anonymous

    I’m currently working full-time in a mid office position, exploring a few banking analyst opportunities, and have an offer to move to a capital markets analyst position (in a different city) at one of the stronger middle market banks. However, I started the interview process with a bulge bracket bank (in my current city) for an industry group before my current offer was given out, and expect a superday shortly. Timing wise, I would be expected to start work in about a month if I took my current offer. I do hope to go to the bulge bracket superday. Is it worth accepting my current offer even though I will potentially reneg later? Also, should I disclose to the bulge bracket bank that I’ve already accepted an offer when I’m going to the superday?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      The most ideal solution is for you to delay the process with the first bank and tell them you need more time to think about the offer. If you can buy more time, then you can wait till the Superday to make the decision. Otherwise, I’d really weigh which option you care for the most. If you really want to work for the BB, I’d still suggest you to go on the superday and see how it goes. I believe the best solution is to buy time so you maintain your integrity and credibility.

  138. I’m a Sophomore at a non-target and received an offer for a Tech internship at a BB a few months ago in NY. Naturally I took it because I was unsure of what other offers I might receive. However, I just received a middle office Finance role at a “better bank”, and I feel like I should jump on this position. What is your opinion? Are my chances for a Summer Analyst role for next summer the same in both situations?

    1. Answered your question above.

  139. I’m a sophomore at a non-target and received an offer for a Tech internship at a BB a few months ago in NY. Naturally I took it because I was unsure of what other offers I might receive. However, I just received a middle office Finance role at a “better bank”, and I feel like I should jump on this position. What is your opinion? Are my chances for a Summer Analyst role for next summer the same in both situations?

    1. If you’re asking about a back office IT internship vs. a middle office finance role, yes, I would make that move. It will still be tough to move from that to a front office role, but it’s do-able and it’s the right move to make.

  140. I signed an offer from a prop trading shop, and now I’ve received an offer from a BB I-Bank. Both are internships. I-banking has already been where my heart is. But for the prop trading shop a FT offer is pretty much guaranteed, while the IB internship doesn’t guarantee any FT offer. Should I renege?

    1. Trading and i-banking are very, very different, so if you really are more interested in investment banking as a long-term career, yes, it’s worth it to renege in this case… especially since the prop trading firm probably has minimal contact with the bank.

  141. Hi Nicole

    I now have an offer for an internship at a BB firm, and also an offer for FT from a second tier bank (which is growing and doing quite well, and the people are very nice). My concern is that if the internship converts to FT I would prefer to stay on there itself, but that would involve reneging on the offer at the second tier bank. Both of them are in the same location and for IBD. I have informed the BB firm that I have a FT offer elsewhere that I would be accepting. What would be the best thing to do if I wanted to renege on the offer, and would that entail a bad decision for the future?

    Thank you!

    1. M&I - Nicole

      If you have informed the BB firm that you have a FT offer elsewhere that you would be accepting, I am not quite sure if the BB firm would give you a FT offer! I wouldn’t worry too much about it!

  142. Hey guys, been a long time reader, and your tutorials have been very helpful. I hope this hasn’t been touched upon yet. I’m going for FT positions. Essentially I received an offer from Company A, in a completely different industry than I was initially going for. I’m currently still in the process of interviewing with B and C, but A gave me a deadline of earlier last week, and I accepted because it was my only offer on the table. I’ve spoken to my career’s office about the possibility (as A was OCR, the rest are not), obviously they are very unhappy that I am even considering renegeing. I was wondering if this is a circumstance where it may be okay – in order to pursue my actual career goals, albeit burning bridges in the process.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Are B and C your dream jobs?

      It would make sense to continue interviewing and see how it goes first. If you do get an offer, shoot us another comment with the details

      I don’t think you need to disclose your job offer with company A to your career center unless it was necessary. Perhaps you can just lay low for now and continue interviewing. When you get an offer, worry about it then

  143. Hi Brian,

    What is someone has signed a return offer, but just has been contacted for additional superdays. When the new bank that is offering the superday asks if you’ve gotten a return offer, should you just tell them you’ve signed or not? i assume if they directly ask if you have signed, you should tell the truth? this happened at one firm, which told me it was against their policy and they stopped interviewing me after i said i signed, but do you know most bank’s policies. would appreciate an email, thanks brian

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes most probably. You’ve signed the offer though so I’m not quite sure if you want to renege your offer or?

  144. Hi,

    I received an offer from a large bank in Charlotte in IB (i prefer not to mention the group). I also also had a superday with another bank in ny with a great group that I would rather be in, and they told me that I should sign my offer and reneg once I hear from them. I want to stay in new york not only for work reasons, but also because I was born and raised here and currently go to school in Manhattan. What are your thoughts?


    1. M&I - Nicole

      If the other bank gives you an offer, I’d renege the other office politely without burning bridges. Since you haven’t received the offer yet, I’d just wait for now

  145. Jack Kennedy


    Loved the article!

    I have a current situation at hand: I have accepted a Full-time, Middle office/Back office role at a BB a few months ago. However, I recently received an front office offer at another smaller firm.

    What is the best way to approach this, and is it wise to renege ? I feel like the Front office role will be better for career.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Challenging situation. Yes I might renege if I were you too. Its hard for me to say because I don’t know what your relationship w the two banks’ contact persons are like. I’d try to be diplomatic and not burn bridges if I were to renege the offer.

      1. Jack Kennedy

        Hi Nicole,

        Thanks so much for your advice, that’s basically what I was thinking as well. Eases my mind when I tell the recruiter :)

  146. Hi M&I,

    I have had several offers for FT recruiting and have decided to take the offer from the elite boutique.

    However, I’m an international student and hence commencing work is subject to the company successfully obtaining a work visa (which they assure would not be an issue).

    Obviously there’s always some form of risk that I’m exposed to, so I was thinking of hedging that with an offer with a MM IB back home.

    What do you think of that? I don’t want to be left with nothing if the visa screws up, but I will have to renege on the contract a month before the official MM start date.


    1. M&I - Nicole

      Tough position. How did they assure you that the work visa wouldn’t be an issue? Did they have that in writing? Otherwise, there is a slight chance that the visa might not come through. I can understand why you would want to hedge though I’d suggest you to think through it carefully and try not to burn any bridges. However, it does not hurt to speak with the MM IB and see how it goes.

      1. Thanks Nicole, I doubt any company would formally guarantee a visa. They mentioned it verbally and to be honest, I don’t see an issue with visa, but you never know.

        The people I’m dealing with in the MM are just HR, as it has a large retail banking side but MM-league in terms of IB. Do you think the bridges burnt with HR will be very crucial down the line?

        1. M&I - Nicole

          If you haven’t formally obtained an offer from the MM then I wouldn’t worry about burning bridges w HR

          1. I have, but have not sent my contract back.

          2. M&I - Nicole

            Ok, you left that part out earlier. Have you already verbally accepted the offer?

  147. This is important,

    Two guys started a consulting startup a year ago and they offered me on wednesday, I called the bank that i was interviewing with but they didnt answer, so on thursday i acceptd the startup.

    Friday the bank offers me and is my dream job and is finance, now what do i do?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Ha, I love this situation! You’re at a great place!
      I’d first apologize profusely to the guys at the startup and explain that I just got offered my dream job (details not disclosed). I’d tell them that I want to accept that offer but knowing that I’ve already made a commitment to you guys, I want to tell you where I stand.
      The above is what I’d say.

      1. Maybe they’ll understand but Im pretty sure they are going to hate me hehe.

        So: “Im sorry but this is one in a lifetime opportunity more alligned with my interests”


        1. And I shouldnt tell the bank right?

        2. M&I - Nicole

          I can’t really say because I don’t know the team. Either way they will not like you reneging your offer but you can try to mitigate the damage

  148. Nathan Ackerson

    here is the quandary –

    i have already accepted a BO offer at a BB (think MS/JPM/GS). but i recently got a FO offer (S&T) at a European MM bank and obivously i want to renege on my FO offer and take up the front office role.

    first, all of this is for summer internship and secondly OCR is not an issue.

    so under these circumstances, would reneging on my offer spell disaster or is it advisable, given the upside??

    thanks in advance

    nathan ackerson

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I don’t think it will spell disaster. However, you may be blacklisted by the bank you renege the offer on (or may not). If you decide to renege, I’d suggest you to be polite and try not to burn any bridges.

  149. Lakishma

    Hi, I recently accepted an offer from citigroup but havent signed yet. Just to hedge myself against any last minute complications, I agreed to a superday coming up that requires me to travel. Would it be acceptable to go to a superday (all expenses paid) even though I have already verbally and will contractually accept the offer?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I believe so–never hurts to interview & network. Try to be discrete though.

      1. True, be discrete and it wil go smooth. Just remember that what is important is not to burn bridges.

        1. M&I - Nicole


      2. How can I network through interviews when I already accepted an offer?

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Without mentioning that you have an offer. Can be tricky so you may want to be diplomatic and not too open about it

          1. But what if they give me an offer after going through the process? Or what if they don’t give me an offer? Doesn’t that just mean that they don’t think I’m good enough anyways? Why would they want to stay in touch with me? Thanks very much!

          2. M&I - Nicole

            I would not worry too much about it. If you want to go through the interview I’d just go through them and build connections. You can always keep in contact with people you’ve built solid rapport with throughout the process.

  150. I recently signed with A, and now have received an offer from B. B is what I consider my ‘dream’ firm. Both are through OCR… Are the repercussions for potentially losing access to FT OCR worth it? Or should I just stay with A and try to get into accelerated interviews for the fall with B? Both firms are BBs…

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Is the difference b/ A & B really huge? If not, I’d go with A given the potential repercussions. However, if you can deal with the consequences of reneging, you can choose B. Since both are BBs, I’d suggest you to be more diplomatic in dealing with the matter

  151. I’ve been interning at a regional boutique for about 7 months, and they extended me an SA offer that exploded before OCR, so I took it. I now have an offer through OCR that is more in line with my long-term goals. I still intern there, and I want to take this new opportunity. How should I go about doing this without burning the bridge?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Difficult situation. I’d tell the other firm you don’t want the offer anymore. Apologize profusely. There is a chance that the first firm will found out your offer with the second firm and let them know that you reneged their first offer. If you are willing to take this chance, do the above.

      It also depends on how much you like the second offer. If you really like it a lot better than the first one, I’d take the chance. I’d do so honestly with grace though.

      1. So to clarify:

        Option 1: Tell them you don’t want the offer anymore and sincerely apologize.

        Option 2: Be honest to the regional about it.

        Just want to get this right since it’s so hard. Really appreciate the help.

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Yes. And there is a risk they (A) may know you have another offer from B and they will tell B you reneged their offer

          You can choose to tell B you have signed another offer with A, or you can choose not to.

          Or you can choose to just stick with (A) and forget B.

          1. I’ve decided that this is too risky and will stick it out with A. Thanks for the pointers, though.

          2. M&I - Nicole

            Good luck! Let me know how it goes.

  152. My offer at a bank got withdrawn and I didn’t even renege.

    Bank A called me to give me an offer and I accepted right away because the position was my top choice. It was a dream job.

    Then another tempting offer came from Bank B. I posted on an internet finance forum asking for advice on which offer to take, even though I had already accepted the first offer.

    I objectively listed the pros and cons of each position. I did list some negative aspects of Bank B’s offer, but I was all positive about Bank A. Throughout the thread, I never indicated I would renege and I was always in favor of Bank A. I never accepted the second offer.

    However, ironically, the first bank withdrew their offer. The second bank complained to my school but didn’t withdraw their offer. One would expect Bank B to get mad at me for listing negative aspects of the job, but it was Bank A that was the most upset. Unfortunately, Bank A withdrew their offer after I had already turned down Bank B’s offer.

    I have since deleted the thread. Have you ever heard about something like this happening and was I treated fairly?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      I’m sorry to hear regarding your story. Did you list your real name when you posted on the forum?

      No, first time.

      Fair/unfair – its your judgement call. They have a right to withdraw their offer. I’d focus on getting an offer with Bank C now

      1. My full name was never included anywhere but my first name was part of my username. The banks recognized my account because I have a relatively unique first name.

        I have already committed to a third firm, but the offer is less desirable than the previous two. Luckily Bank B is still willing to take me for future internships.

        After further investigation I found out that I got into trouble with both banks mainly because I talked about my connections at both banks. I didn’t name specific persons but I said they helped me get my foot in the door.

        Bank A didn’t offer an explanation when they withdrew their offer despite the fact that I asked. I felt wronged and I sent a demanding email to my contact asking him to keep his promise, citing the fact that I already accepted the offer. Finally Bank A HR called me to tell me that it was the online post. I apologized later for the demanding email. But I feel that I’ve burned too many bridges at Bank A and there’s personal dislike. I’m just really sad about the whole situation.

        1. M&I - Nicole

          What did you write about Bank A on your online post?

          Don’t be sad. Let go!

          1. Bank B withdrew their offer as well.
            I primarily got into huge trouble for mentioning how my contacts at both banks helped me “get my foot in the door.” This damaged both banks’ reputations by making them seem less meritocratic. They were high level connections. Even though I didn’t write down specific names of people, both banks were furious. The forum was public and both banks independently found the thread. Let this be a warning to everyone else: don’t publicly post about your connections.

          2. M&I - Nicole

            Good luck!

  153. So I verbally accepted an offer from a BB in HK but just received an offer from a BB in NY. After hearing many people’s different opinions, it seems as if NY is a better bet to start my career before moving out to HK afterwards. What are your thoughts on reneging on the HK offer?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Follow your gut. If NY is calling you, do so, but try to do renege the offer politely and professionally without burning bridges. Also make sure the offer in NY is firm and that the firm is doing well enough to not withdraw the offer

  154. Dear Brian,
    I verbally accepted an offer, however, if I told them now I am not going to sign the offer, that shouldn’t be a “renege”, or is it still? The offer is for internship. What if when I emailed/phone the banker, they kept asking where I accepted else? Please help, it’s very urgent.

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes, it is still considered “reneging” an offer.

      Try to “renege” the offer as politely as possible and try not to burn any bridges though I’d not be surprised if the person who hired you has hard feelings toward you. Be honest, and if the person who hired you called you to ask why you don’t want to join the team, pick up the phone and explain; I wish I had done that. However, one word of advice – make sure the firm you will be accepting an offer with (I assume you are reneging the offer because you have a better offer elsewhere) is a good firm to work for, and that you definitely click with the team. Think very carefully and make sure you really don’t want the offer you accepted before you renege. The last thing you want is to go back to the team you “reneged” and ask for a job down the line (been through that too).

  155. Great article, thanks!

    I accepted a junior summer internship in public accounting but during the semester became very interested in corporate banking. I was wondering if I could interview for corporate banking and renege on my public accounting internship if I am given an offer. I heard that my school bans students from on campus recruiting if they renege. However, I know I would much rather do CB for a career rather than accounting, if I can convert the internship into a FT offer.

    1. Just to follow up on this I realized that my career center guidelines state that recruiters interviewing in the fall must give students until December to respond to an offer; however, I was only given a week (this was in October). I don’t know if this makes things easier or not, in the end I still signed the offer letter.

    2. M&I - Nicole

      Tough call. Can you renege the offer without your school knowing? I’d choose CB too if I prefer it to Accounting. Try to figure out a way to renege your offer gracefully, and be prepared to accept the consequences.

      1. I’m pretty sure they would tell my career center if I reneged. My best bet would be to tell the career center about this and see if they let me renege without banning me from OCR though somehow I am inclined to believe that even if they see that I only had a week to decide on my offer they would still tell me to stick with it rather than letting me renege.

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Tough call on this one. Try to be as genuine as possible and see!

  156. Firstly I love this website!! This site is incredible. My dilemma is that I (junior) accepted an internship offer from “Company A” in their finance division. This is not what i want to do for my career. But, knowing the job market i signed and sent the paper back to the company. Plz note that on the signed letter it said that the offer can be terminated by either party. Also i got this through on campus recruiting. Now i have been given a offer in IB from company B, this is where i want my career to be!! However, Company B does not come to campus. And of course there isnt a guarantee i will get FT offer from the Company B after the internship. This is my dilemma!! I dont want to create any friction at my career services center and at company A. What should I do. Yes, this is a step better from A to B. PLZ comment other can also give there opinion

    1. M&I - Nicole should help

      I’d take the offer w Company B – none of the internships can guarantee you a FT position. Even if you were guaranteed a FT position you could get laid off too so I wouldn’t worry too much

  157. I went through an accelerated process for one of the Bulge Bracket Summer Analyst programs and was fortunate enough to come away with an offer. However, it came with a pretty tight deadline that will prohibit me from interviewing elsewhere. I’d still like to interview with the other banks to get a sense of where I might fit best. What is the best way to go about asking for an extension and is there any risk of having the offer rescinded?


    1. M&I - Nicole

      Depends on how badly they want you. Excuses – you need more time to think about it. However, if they really need you to sign the contract now, I don’t think you can do much

  158. Hey guys,

    Any thoughts on reneging on a big 4 audit f/t offer for another big 4 advisory f/t offer in the same city? (at different firms obviously) Just wondering, thats all. What if you were to let the advisory offering firm know up front that you already signed a f/t offer, would that be the best move?


    1. M&I - Nicole

      I’d tell the big4 audit firm that I can’t work there anymore. I don’t think I’d tell the advisory firm upfront though; depends on the situation but you should be vigilant

  159. I’m a JD/MBA with no full-time (but good summer) work experience. I currently have 2 summer assoc. offers at big law firms. I would like to do IB more than work in biglaw, but the law firm offers expire before I’ll know if I get an IB summer offer. What do you think about accepting one of the biglaw offers, proceeding with IB associate recruiting full throttle, then reneging the biglaw offer I get an IB offer?


    1. M&I - Nicole

      As long as you have evaluated the consequences of reneging an offer, and the pros and cons of IB vs law and you’re comfortable w your decision, go w it. Just don’t burn bridges or at least try not to

  160. Have more of a unique situation — would a top BB (GS/MS/JPM) ever call up a megafund if you reneged on their FT offer (verbal acceptance only, no contract signed) and they found out which megafund you were headed to? And would the megafund ever tell the BB that you were interviewing?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Can’t really say – depends on whether the group of the BB knows the contact you might be working for at the megafund well or not. Possibility not high though. And since you are just starting your career, i dont think senior peeps wld care too much. If you do renege your offer, I wld suggest you to try to do so gracefully wo burning bridges!

      1. Thanks for the quick response! So, this should only be a true concern if senior people (not analysts) got involved?

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Yep though words could spread so don’t burn bridges!

  161. Hi Brian,

    Great site! I am in a similar situation: I accepted an offer from a top BB in Finance (like treasury or controller). I know for sure that I want to do research/trading. You mentioned that it doesn’t make much sense to go from BB to lower, but it makes sense to go from back/mid to front office. What do you think of my situation in terms of risk and potential upside?

    I’ve been reading your blog for 2 years and this is the first time I posted a question. Really looking forward to hearing back!!

    Thank you!

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Have you networked with people in the front office? Do they know you are interested in working in trading/research? What is the likelihood of you transferring to those teams? = these are questions you should address

      Risk: your current boss knows you are looking and get upside at you. Potential upside: You get the job you want. Upside > Risk

      1. I know for a fact that it is close to impossible to move within the firm, as I have asked many people. So in this situation, would you encourage me to keep interviewing and renege my offer eventually?

        1. M&I - Nicole

          Keep interviewing and meet as many people as you can. I don’t recommend reneging offers given the downsides (discussed in the article) and personal experience. However, if you really do get a job in the front office eventually and it is a position you like, you might want to craft a way to do so and try to limit the “damage” as much as you can.

          1. Thank you very much for your advice and quick response!

  162. Hi,

    I recently got a full time offer from a big IB (not on the level of GS/MS/JPM but big enough and I liked it there a lot) after doing an internship.

    I can’t start working right away (have to wait for a few months). There are a few recruiting events in the near term future, and I was wondering whether to attend them. I’ll sign the offer I have (given the economic climate), but I’m wondering whether there’s a point going through all these events again?

    If I do get an offer elsewhere, is there a point in reneging?

    I’m also worried about the bank pulling my offer before I start. If I’ve signed everything, etc., is there a chance that this may happen?

    1. M&I - Nicole

      Yes, always network! Network, network and network.

      Don’t think too much! You only have one offer now. When you get another offer, then you worry about the questions above. I’ll be happy to help if this happens

  163. Anonymous

    Hi, I completed an Ops internship at a BB this past summer and got an offer for their FT program. I found out from work that I REALLY don’t want to do Ops, and I’m gunning for S&T. However, they gave me a very early deadline. If I take the offer to secure a job, will that end up affecting my chances of being interviewed/hired by another company? If they ask and I tell them I already took the job offer, will they dismiss my application?

    1. It depends on the bank and group, some will care, some won’t. I would take it to be secure and have a Plan B and then not worry about reneging if something better comes along.

  164. Hi,

    I recently received a return offer from a bb i-bank after finishing my summer internship there. I haven’t accepted yet, since I would like to explore my options and consider a few other banks. I believe “accelerated recruitment” starts very soon – any tips on how to go about doing that, in terms of preparation as well as how to do that without annoying the people that I worked with this summer (who hope to see me back next year)?


    1. Just contact recruiters and friends at other places and explain your situation and say that you’re very interested but need to find out quickly. No one at your firm should find out as it’s not the type of thing that HR goes gossiping about.

  165. Hi Brian,

    I am currently interning with an Australian Middle Markets Bank in IBD. If I get a FT offer (and offers usually come out before the recruitment season, which means I would have to sign on before I even get to interview at other places), do you think I can renege on that offer if I land a BB FT role?


    1. You can, but in Australia it may not be the best idea since the finance industry is even smaller and everyone really does know everyone else

  166. Hi,

    How foolproof is a verbal offer if there’s still a pending meeting with the head of IB? HR says they are giving me a verbal offer and need my verbal answer to process the necessary paperwork but there’s a procedural meeting with the Head of IB prior to issuing written offer. Too early to celebrate? It is a BB.

    1. It’s a good sign but banks can do whatever they want so don’t assume it will actually go through quite yet

  167. So I didn’t read this article before, but I recently reneged on an internship offer for data analytics at a start-up for a BB IBD SA offer. I told the recruiter at the start-up that I had ‘personal reasons,’ a mistake, I know now. That recruiter found out about my other offer and contacted career services a few days ago. My question is, do you think that recruiter would try to tell the BB? I also didn’t know to I should tell the BB I would renege another offer in order to accept theirs–should I tell them now? I really don’t know what to do!

    1. You can’t do much of anything now, I doubt the bank will do anything though since it was not another bank you reneged on.

  168. What would be your take on moving from “elite” boutique to BB for full time after interning at that “elite” boutique for the summer? You never officially accepted the full-time position but said previously that if offered, you would take the full-time.

    1. You can do that, as long as you haven’t signed a contract it’s not the end of the world.

  169. Jonathan

    Hey Brian,

    I understand that each person is different really. And here I’m really talking about my school’s Office of Career Services. Would the guy that is in charge of the account I previously accepted an offer from actually be understanding of my situation and allow me to renege.

    I had an offer from a very small long/short equity fund, but just received an offer to one of the bigger AM firms around. The opps are much better, along with the pay and job scope. Should I just be honest with him? Thanks

    1. I’m not sure I understand your question. No one “allows” you to renege, you either do it or you don’t and then deal with the consequences. For moving from the small fund to the big AM firm just say a better opportunity came up and you’ve decided to accept it but don’t name the specific firm.

  170. If UBS and GS gave you an offer in Australia, you would have an orgasm (reference Australian league tables).

  171. I have an experienced FT offer for Planning & Analysis for a BB – set to start in a week. Just got an offer for equity research at a small independent firm. Should I renege?

    1. Tough call there but I would only renege if you actually want to do equity research in the long-term.

  172. Ok how about this:

    The bank I work for tends to provide counter-offers when certain employees (graduates) resign. In fact, I know some of my colleagues have used this as a tactic to get better opportunities.

    In this situation, should I sign the contract for the new job before or after I resign in my current job? If I do get a great counter offer and have yet to sign, no problems. But if for some reason the new company decides to rescind their offer and my current company accepts my resignation, I’d be left jobless. So what’s the best approach?

    1. Why would you resign without signing the contract for a new job? Just tell them you got the offer and will be moving unless they make a counter-offer. If they do, consider it, otherwise move on. No point in leaving before signing the contract first.

  173. I’m a sophomore at a non-ivy target school. For this summer, I have an offer from a boutique bank that only offers a generalist program, so I would be working across all aspects of commercial/real estate/IB/VC/private wealth banking. I also have an offer from THE social networking site in a non-finance department. I don’t think I will be learning a whole lot if I work at the bank, so is it worth going with a non-finance internship if I can get a name like [social networking site] on my resume?

    1. I would say no if you want to do banking or PE afterward. If you wanted to do tech or anything else go with the tech company.

  174. What if you get two offers, both at bulge brackets?

    1. I would never renege on a BB offer for another BB offer.

      1. Is reneging the same as rejecting? That is, in terms of the effects?

        1. No. Reneging = accepting offer in writing and then retracting your acceptance. Rejecting = you never accepted it, so you receive the offer and say no. So rejecting is acceptable, whereas reneging can get you into trouble.

  175. Thanks for the message! What if I have an exploding verbal offer but the bank has not provided any written offer or any detailed info regarding the offer (not even salary, housing, etc)? Would it look less bad to first accept and then find out the details in the written contract and possibly renege later? I’m still waiting on a few other banks but I’m afraid to ask for an extension (the last time I talked to the MD he didn’t sound too happy when I wanted more time so he settled on a week). Thanks so much!

    1. It doesn’t look as bad if it’s not in writing. They should really give you detailed info. first.

  176. In the fall recruiting season I had no choice and accepted a “mid-office” offer at a BB in US. However, after the new year I was able to land a trading position at an European bank in Asia. I was thinking of reneging the “mid-office” offer. But one major obstacle is that the BB has applied a work visa for me, which cost something around $5,000. It makes me feel really sorry if I have renege the offer. It is absolutely very unethical and I want to hear your opinions on this.

    Thanks a lot.

    1. I would just renege, $5,000 is about 0.000000000001% of their profits for the year

  177. This is not banking related, but still would like your opinion.

    Let’s say, I’ve participated in fall full-time recruiting (senior at undergrad), and I’ve received offers, pushed the offer deadline as much as I could, but still had to sign in the end. None of the jobs are ideal, so I picked the most attractive offer.

    Recently, a firm that I cold-called during fall recruiting finally got back to me saying that they want to interview me. I actually prefer this firm over the offer I currently agreed to. Should I tell the firm that offered me an interview that I already accepted a full time offer? Wouldn’t that create a negative impression on their mind? Or should I keep quiet until an offer is made? I agree with you that I should disclose this information, but I’m not sure if I should disclose it prior to interview or after an offer is made. Both are consulting firms, but practice in different areas.



    1. I would tell them that you have accepted an offer elsewhere, but they are your first choice and if they are fine with it you would like to interview with them.

  178. Btw in UK is it worth calling them to delay offer deadlines or asking to hurry up with last stage intw outcome? Is it more or less acceptable?

    Thank you

  179. Hi,

    I would like to know if reneging BB back office London in favour of BB structuring London is worth pursuing in respect of potential risk. At the assessment centre at BB back office bank, I was stupid enough to put the name of the other bank on their comment sheet where they asked a question if I have applied to other banks. How bad is my situation?


    1. It’s worth it. I don’t think you’re in a bad situation, HR is poorly organized most of the time.

  180. Hey, very informative article.

    In the comments, I know you have been dicussing alot of Big4 vs. IB offer decisions. In the article, you say to never renege on an internship offer since no fulltime position is certain after the internship, but that it is ok to renege on a Big 4 offer for BB IB.

    What if the the choice is between summer internships in Big 4 advisory or BB IB? Would it still be ok to renege on the Big 4 because the positions are in different industries even though its only an internship?


    1. Yes that’s probably ok.

  181. alphaclear

    Awesome article, excellent site.

    Would reneging be worth it in order to switch groups? Say BB DCM to BB M&A? I hate DCM and really want to do M&A.

    1. In my opinion, no – you could just transfer to M&A once you’re already working there. There is too much risk if you renege for the reasons mentioned here.

  182. I noticed I have similar question with GL and AA. However, I just do not know how should I tell the IB? Just ask them what do they think if I have already accepted offer from big 4, but I want IB more?

  183. Hi Brian,

    When I started my job hunting, I applied both big 4 and IB. I got the offer from big 4 and signed it (the starting date is one year from now). The contract did not mention how to cease employment, any fine related to the cancelation of contract etc. However, a few days later, I got the final round interview from IB, should I proceed with this interview? And if I finally get the IB offer, can I renege my big 4 offer? Will I be involved in any legal issue? Thanks!

    1. Yes you can proceed, just renege on the Big 4 offer if you get the IB one. I would just tell the bank, “I am very interested and would accept a position here if given one, but I’ve already accepted an offer with a Big 4 firm. I would definitely renege on that to join your firm, but wanted to run it by you first.”

  184. I was reading this, and I think it’s very well written. I never wanted to be in this position, but I’m thinking about reneging a Big 4 firm for a MM IBD position. I’m just waiting for the physical contract to arrive from IBD.

    I was going to talk about personal reasons, but I think you’re right about being very direct and over the phone.

    I was wondering if you could give any more specific advice?

    1. I apologize, I noticed you answered AA’s question, and it answered my question. Any further advice would be greatly appreciated though!

    2. I don’t have much to add – one tip is to not spend a lot of time deliberating and going back-and-forth on your decision because that will just make the call harder. Plan out a few sentences for what you’ll say, then make the call and let it be over.

  185. Hey Brian,

    So i did an operations analyst summer internship at a BB this past summer, and received an offer to continue their full time. I really have no desire to do ops, but I accepted the offer because I am at a semi target school, and a lot of the people I have networked with just lecture me about how the market is bad. (not to mention they gave me a ridiculously early deadline to decide by and I personally can’t afford to graduate unemployed) I have a final round interview however at a middle market bank in sales trading, if I were to receive this do you think this would be a case where the positives far out weight the negatives?


  186. Hi Brian,

    Signed a contract with a BB for Corporate Banking in Italy but have strong indications of a second offer from another BB, but in IB instead and in London. I know you said not to switch between BB banks but these are two different areas. I’d really appreciate any advice.

    Many thanks.

    1. In that case it’s worth it to switch since they’re in different countries and groups – I would not hesitate to renege.

  187. Hi

    I had initially accepted an offer at a BB in Aus but now I accepted a more prestigious BB in HK. How should I go to renege that offer? HK is obviously a bigger financial hub than AUS and my long term goal is PE in HK/China so I guess it wont make too great a dent on my career if I renege on the AUS offer. However, I do not want to burn my bridge in AUS at the same time.


    1. Just follow the advice here – there’s no way to avoid burning bridges, it’s like getting a divorce but pretending you can still have the same relationship with the other person. Send a quick email to them and say that you have decided to pursue an offer elsewhere.

  188. Hi Brian,

    Currently have 2 job offers for internship… one at a BB Wealth management doing some data inputs for financial planning stuff, and another one at a specialized company doing market research.

    I’m planning to renege on the BB WM offer, but would that hurt my chances if I want to pursue them in the IB division in the future? ie. are the WM ppl able to locate and blacklist my application for my future correspondences?


  189. What are your thoughts on reneging on a BB middle office position for a MM/boutique front office role? Both are full time jobs and in the same location.

    Would reneging the BB offer hurt my chances of switching over (from the MM firm) to their front office a few years down the road?

    I’d like to think that MO and FO managers don’t really tell each other about new hires (which is probably true for IBD I guess), but given the work proximity between risk management/trade support and S&T, I’m concerned that reneging the risk mgmt offer might mean a black mark in S&T as well.

    1. I don’t think firms really make / keep black lists and track people over years and years so it’s not that dangerous a move… it might hurt you if you want to move to the front office later on but chances are low given the high turnover

  190. Hi- quick question for people. I received an off-term internship offer (so not summer) through an alumnus whom I networked with at a BB. For recruiting for junior year summer internships, am I compelled to accept the offer that they will no doubt give me? Is it really bad to switch banks later on, especially since this guy helped me so much, and basically created a one-person internship just for me?

    1. It’s not the end of the world if you do a summer internship elsewhere, but I would only do it if it’s a major jump in recognition / quality of work or such.