New York / Sept 22, 2010 – Total compensation for risk professionals in asset management was on the rebound in 2009 after declines in 2007 and 2008, driven largely by bonuses. Based on data gathered in 2010, total compensation for 2009 grew 4%, salaries remained flat to slightly negative and bonuses grew 7% between 2008 and 2009. These figures were reported in the sixth annual Professional Compensation Survey by Risk Talent Associates, a leading risk management executive search firm.
Last year’s survey reported a 14% decline in total compensation between 2007 and 2008 that reflected the impact of the credit crisis and early parts of the recession. The trend for declines in total compensation in 2008, followed by increases in 2009 was particularly magnified for risk professionals at alternative investment firms (hedge funds and fund of funds), where bonuses have the most impact on total compensation. For 2009, 90% of risk professionals in alternative investments reported receiving a bonus as compared to 86% of those in traditional asset management and 81% of those in insurance. Michael Woodrow, President of Risk Talent Associates, notes, “these gains show that asset management started to settle this year, and employers are willing to compensate risk professionals with bonuses more typical of healthy economic times.”
This year’s survey confirms that total compensation and salary ranges peak for those with more than 16 years of experience, however growth for those with less than 10 years of experience is more robust. Compensation is highest for professionals focused on enterprise risk, typically more senior-level managers, however compensation for market risk professionals exceeds that of credit and operational risk professionals. Michael Woodrow adds, “for obvious reasons, we have seen credit risk become a much more important role for asset management firms whereas in the past these firms favored market risk professionals.” As the financial system has stabilized, job movement has declined: 23% of respondents report changing jobs in the last two years versus 29% in the last survey. This trend looks likely to change again in the coming year as 35% report they will seek new jobs in the future as opportunities become more plentiful.
Over 225 risk professionals participated in this year’s risk salary survey, including executives from traditional asset management (54%), alternative investments including hedge funds and fund of funds (20%) and insurance (26%). Risk Talent Associates, an executive search firm focused on risk management, will publish additional survey updates in 2010 (software, consulting, energy and corporate). All surveys analyze compensation trends by years of experience and title, industry segment, risk focus, geography and size of company.
About Risk Talent Associates
Risk Talent Associates (www.risktalent.com) is the leading international executive search firm focused exclusively on positions in the fields of market, credit and operational risk, as well as financial compliance and risk technology. Risk Talent’s expertise, industry knowledge, proprietary network and dedicated focus shorten the recruiting process to deliver senior and mid-level risk managers in the capital markets, asset management, energy, consulting and software industries. Risk Talent has offices in New York, Chicago, Hong Kong and London.
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