The death of a young Goldman Sachs analyst in San Francisco back in April has officially been determined to be “suicide by jumping,” Bloomberg News reports citing a police report.
The police said Sarvshreshth Gupta was seen on surveillance footage falling from an apartment building into a parking lot at around 4:20 a.m. on April 16th, the Bloomberg report said.
In a heartbreaking essay posted on Medium last month, which has now been removed, Gupta’s father Sunil wrote about how his son was dealing with stress at work before his untimely death.
Gupta, a University of Pennsylvania graduate who was originally from New Delhi, India, worked as a tech/media/telecom analyst in Goldman‘s San Francisco office.
He began his career at Goldman in the fall of 2014. His father explained how early on he would complain about the long hours. In late March, Gupta quit his job. Shortly after, he rejoined the firm.
The father wrote that a few weeks later his son called and said that he was not getting any sleep and had a lot of work to finish.
“April, 16, 2015, 3.10 pm, India time. That is,+ 12.30 hours, California time. He calls us and says, ‘it is too much. I have not slept for two days, have a client meeting tomorrow morning, have to complete a presentation, my VP is annoyed and I am working alone in my office.’
“I got furious. ‘Take fifteen days leave and come home’, I said. He quipped ‘they will not allow’. I said, ‘tell them to consider this as your resignation letter.’
“Finally, he agreed to complete his work in about an hour, go to his apartment which was half a mile from his office block and return in the morning.”
Gupta was later found dead in a parking lot near his apartment building. He was only 22.
There’s been an ongoing debate about stress and long hours for junior-level bank employees. This conversation really began back in August 2013 when Bank of America intern Mortiz Erhardt died after reportedly working consecutive all-nighters at the bank’s London office.
In the last two years, there have been a number of suicides and unexpected deaths among financial-services employees. In May, Thomas Hughes, a 29-year-old banker from Moelis & Co., died after leaping from his luxury apartment building in downtown Manhattan.His father told the Daily Mail that his didn’t have much free time from work and that “…at a time when he was under stress he probably resorted to illegal drugs, causing this incredibly poor judgement…”
Banks have been trying to do more to improve the lifestyles of their employees, especially the junior level ones. Goldman makes it so Saturdays are off for their junior bankers. JPMorgan offers one “protected weekend” for the younger employees. Lower-level employees at Bank of America Merrill Lynch are required to take four weekend days off each month.
It seems the conversation will continue.