Most large investment banks maintain central offices in financial centers. Pictured: Lower Manhattan

The following list catalogues the largest, most profitable, and otherwise notable investment banks. This list of investment banks notes full-service banks, financial conglomerates, independent investment banks, private placement firms and notable acquired, merged, or bankrupt investment banks. As an industry it is broken up into the Bulge Bracket (upper tier), Middle Market (mid-level businesses), and boutique market (specialized businesses).[1][2]

Largest full-service investment banks

The following are the largest full-service global investment banks; full-service investment banks usually provide both advisory and financing banking services, as well as sales, market making, and research on a broad array of financial products, including equities, credit, rates, currency, commodities, and their derivatives. The largest investment banks are noted with the following:[3][4]

  1. United States JPMorgan Chase
  2. United States Goldman Sachs
  3. United States BofA Securities
  4. United States Morgan Stanley
  5. United States Citigroup
  6. Switzerland UBS
  7. Germany Deutsche Bank
  8. United Kingdom HSBC
  9. United Kingdom Barclays
  10. Canada RBC Capital Markets
  11. United States Wells Fargo Securities
  12. United States Jefferies Group
  13. France BNP Paribas
  14. Japan Mizuho
  15. United States Lazard
  16. Japan Nomura
  17. United States Evercore Partners
  18. Canada BMO Capital Markets
  19. Japan Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group

Many of the largest investment banks are considered among the "bulge bracket banks" and as such underwrite the majority of financial transactions in the world.[5] Additionally, banks seeking more deal flow with smaller-sized deals with comparable profitability are known as "middle market investment banks" (known as boutique or independent investment banks).[1]

Financial conglomerates

Large financial-services conglomerates combine commercial banking, investment banking, and sometimes insurance. Such combinations were common in Europe but illegal in the United States prior to the passage of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act of 1999. The following are large investment banking firms (not listed above) that are affiliated with large financial institutions:[6]

Private placement companies

Private placement agents, including companies that specialize in fundraising for private equity funds:[8][9]

Other notable advisory and capital markets firms

The following is a list of other boutique advisory firms and capital markets firms that have some notability:[citation needed]

Notable former investment banks and brokerages

The following are notable investment banking and brokerage firms that have been liquidated, acquired or merged and no longer operate under the same name.

Firm Fate
A.G. Becker & Co. acquired by Merrill Lynch in 1984
A.G. Edwards acquired by Wachovia in 2007
Alex. Brown & Sons ultimately part of Deutsche Bank, survives as minor business unit
The Argosy Group acquired by Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in 1995
Babcock & Brown collapsed 2009, liquidation of its assets
BancAmerica Robertson Stephens acquired by NationsBank in 1998 and integrated into NationsBanc Montgomery Securities to form Banc of America Securities
Barings collapsed 1995; assets acquired by ING Bank
Bear Stearns collapsed 2008; assets acquired by JPMorgan Chase
Blyth, Eastman Dillon & Co. merged with Paine Webber in 1979
Bowles Hollowell Connor & Co. acquired by First Union in 1998
Brown Bros. & Co. merged with Harriman Brothers & Company in 1931 to form Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.
BT Alex. Brown acquired by Deutsche Bank in 1999 to form Deutsche Bank Alex. Brown
C.E. Unterberg, Towbin acquired by Collins Stewart in 2007
Commodities Corporation acquired by Goldman Sachs in 1997 and renamed Goldman Sachs Princeton
Dain Rauscher Wessels bought by Royal Bank of Canada in 2000
Dean Witter Reynolds merged with Morgan Stanley to form Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, subsequently the Dean Witter name was eliminated
Dillon, Read & Company acquired by Swiss Bank Corporation in 1997, and is ultimately part of UBS AG
Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette acquired by Credit Suisse in 2001
Drexel Burnham Lambert liquidated 1990
E.F. Hutton & Co. acquired by Shearson Lehman/American Express in 1988, ultimately part of Lehman Brothers
First Boston Corporation merged with Credit Suisse in 1988 to form CS First Boston, renamed "Credit Suisse First Boston" in 1996 and "Credit Suisse" in 2006
First Union Securities acquired by Wachovia in 2002 to form Wachovia Securities
G.H. Walker & Co. acquired by White Weld & Co in 1974 and ultimately part of Merrill Lynch
Giuliani Capital Advisors the investment banking division of Giuliani Partners was sold to Macquarie Group in 2007
Goodbody & Co. merged into Merrill Lynch in 1970
Gruntal & Co. acquired by Ryan Beck & Co. in 2002
H.B. Hollins & Co. liquidated in 1913
Halsey, Stuart & Co. ultimately part of Wachovia
Hambrecht & Quist acquired by Chase Manhattan Bank in 1999 and ultimately part of JPMorgan Chase; H&Q name continues as investment advisor
Hambros Bank acquired by Société Générale in 1998
Harriman Brothers & Company merged with Brown Bros. & Co. in 1931 to form Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.
Hayden, Stone & Co. acquired Shearson Hammill & Co. in 1974 and assumed the Shearson name; ultimately acquired by American Express in 1981.
HBOS acquired by Lloyds TSB to form the Lloyds Banking Group in 2009
Hill Samuel acquired by Trustee Savings Bank (TSB) in 1987 later Lloyds TSB
Hornblower & Weeks investment bank acquired by Loeb, Rhoades & Co. in 1977 and ultimately part of Shearson/American Express
J.&W. Seligman & Co. investment bank ultimately part of UBS AG; continues as asset manager
J.C. Bradford & Co. acquired by PaineWebber in 2000, ultimately part of UBS AG
John Nuveen & Co. IBD acquired by Piper Jaffray in 1999; company continues as asset management house under Nuveen Investments, which is controlled by private equity firm Madison Dearborn Partners
Keefe, Bruyette & Woods acquired by Stifel in 2012, still maintain independent branding
Kidder, Peabody & Co. acquired by General Electric Corporation in 1986, subsequently resold to PaineWebber in 1994 and ultimately part of UBS AG
Kleinwort Benson acquired by Dresdner Bank in 1995
Kuhn, Loeb & Co. ultimately part of Lehman Brothers
L.F. Rothschild ultimately part of C.E. Unterberg, Towbin, with parts sold to Oppenheimer; not to be confused with Rothschild & Co (the result of a merger of the British N.M. Rothschild & Sons with the French Rothschild & Cie); see Rothschild family
Lee, Higginson & Co. liquidated 1932
Lehman Brothers bankrupt in 2008, asset sold to Barclays Capital and Nomura Holdings
Llama Company ultimately defunct in 1998 after departure of Alice Walton
Loeb, Rhoades & Co. acquired by Shearson Hammill & Co. to form Shearson Loeb Rhoades in 1979 which was later acquired by American Express in 1981 to form Shearson/American Express
McColl Partners acquired by Deloitte in 2013 to form Deloitte Corporate Finance
Mendelssohn & Co. aryanized by the Nazis in 1938, sold in parts to Deutsche Bank
Merrill Lynch & Co. acquired by Bank of America in 2008 and integrated into Banc of America Securities to form Bank of America Merrill Lynch
Miller Buckfire & Co. acquired by Stifel in 2012, still maintains independent branding
Montgomery Securities acquired by NationsBank in 1997 and integrated into NationsBanc Capital Markets to form NationsBanc Montgomery Securities
Morgan & Cie acquired by Morgan Stanley in 1967 and incorporated as Morgan et Compagnie International in Morgan Stanley International Incorporated in 1975
Monnet, Murnane & Co. liquidated 1945
Morgan Grenfell acquired by Deutsche Bank in 1990
Morgan, Harjes & Co. renamed Morgan & Cie in 1926 and acquired by Morgan Stanley in 1926
Paine Webber acquired by UBS AG in 2000.
Park Ryan liquidated 1979
Prudential Securities acquired by Wachovia in 2003
Reynolds Securities merged with Dean Witter & Co. in 1978 to form Dean Witter Reynolds, subsequently merged with Morgan Stanley
Robert Fleming & Co. acquired by JPMorgan Chase in 2000.
Robertson Stephens acquired by BankAmerica in 1997 and integrated into BancAmerica Securities to form BancAmerica Robertson Stephens. Sold again in 1998 to BankBoston (later FleetBoston Financial and would operate as Robertson Stephens from 1998–2002, when the firm was shuttered after the collapse of the Internet bubble
Roosevelt & Son Broken up into three firms in 1934: Roosevelt & Son (liquidated), Roosevelt & Weigold (today operates as Roosevelt & Cross); and Dick & Merle Smith
Ryan Beck & Co. acquired by Stifel in 2007
S. G. Warburg & Co ultimately part of UBS AG; not to be confused with M.M. Warburg or Warburg Pincus; see Warburg family
Salomon Brothers acquired by Travelers Group in 1997, ultimately part of Citigroup
Schroders investment bank bought by Citigroup in 2000; continues as asset manager
Shearson/American Express acquired Lehman Brothers Kuhn Loeb in 1984 to form Shearson Lehman/American Express, later Shearson Lehman Hutton and Shearson Lehman Brothers
Shearson, Hammill & Co. renamed Shearson Loeb Rhoades after the 1979 acquisition of Loeb, Rhoades & Co. in 1979; acquired by American Express in 1981 to form Shearson/American Express
Shearson Lehman Hutton renamed Shearson Lehman Brothers in 1990 and split up in 1993 with the IPO of Lehman Brothers and the sale of the retail and brokerage operations to Primerica
Soundview Technology Group Acquired by Charles Schwab in 2003.
Swiss Bank Corporation merged with Union Bank of Switzerland to form UBS AG
Union Bank of Switzerland merged with Swiss Bank Corporation to form UBS AG
Wachovia Securities acquired by Wells Fargo in 2008 and renamed Wells Fargo Securities
Wasserstein Perella & Co. bought by Dresdner Bank in 2000.
Wertheim & Co. acquired by Schroders, and ultimately by Salomon Smith Barney
White Weld & Co. bought by Merrill Lynch in 1978.
Wood Gundy acquired by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in 1987, operating as CIBC Wood Gundy before becoming CIBC World Markets in 1997

See also


  1. ^ a b "Middle Market Investment Banks List - Investment Overview". Corporate Finance Institute. December 1, 2018. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  2. ^ Seth, Shobhit (October 6, 2017). "Should You Work At A Boutique Investment Bank?". Investopedia. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  3. ^ "Top investment banks 2017 | Statista". Statista. Retrieved 2018-03-29.
  4. ^ Seth, Shobhit (2014-11-11). "The World's Top 10 Investment Banks". Investopedia. Archived from the original on 2019-02-08. Retrieved 2018-03-29.
  5. ^ "Definition of "Bulge bracket" - NASDAQ Financial Glossary". Retrieved 2018-03-29.
  6. ^ Litan, Richard J. Herring and Robert E. "Financial Conglomerates: The Future of Finance?". Brookings. Retrieved 2018-03-29.
  7. ^ ABN AMRO Bank N.V. was acquired by a consortium of Fortis, RBS and Santander in October 2007. Since October 2009 ABN AMRO is owned by the state of the Netherlands.
  8. ^ Dow Jones Private Equity Analyst, Special Section "Sources of Capital", page 23 "Placement Agent Ranking" Total Raised From New LPs
  9. ^ Excludes placement agent groups within large investment banks. Top Placement Agents at End of 2008. Wall Street Journal, April 22, 2009