Want to work for the hottest independent bank analyst around?
Meredith Whitney, who just left her job at Oppenheimer to strike out on her own, is looking for five salespeople for her new firm. She’s also looking for at least three more analysts (she already has two).
NYMag caught up with Whitney and asked the question of whether she can really turn her rising start into a thriving business.
Others have tried this move to mixed effect:
Whitney’s move has plenty of precedents on the Street. Ivy Zelman, who covered home-building stocks for Credit Suisse, now runs Zelman & Associates, and Dana Telsey, a retail-industry analyst at Bear Stearns for many years, now has Telsey Advisory Group. The ﬁeld tests even hard-earned reputations. Elaine Garzarelli, then an analyst at Shearson Lehman, predicted the stock-market crash of 1987 and rocketed to Wall Street stardom overnight. She launched her own business, Garzarelli Research, in 1995. If you haven’t heard of her, though, there’s a reason: She hasn’t replicated that feat since. The pressure is on for Whitney to continue to be right and prove her value in a world saturated with expert opinion.
We also enjoyed this tid-bit:
Whitney is an unlikely ﬁgure for the job of keeping Wall Street honest. For one thing, she’s a woman: “The funny thing is, in your twenties you try and look serious, and after your twenties, you just try and look hot,” she jokes. “I’m not an old white dude, so I stick out.” More important, her outsider status may have put her in a position to see what others didn’t, or at least to go public with it.