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Vanguard's London pay isn't the best, but it's been hiring heavily

If you want to make a lot of money on the buy-side, you probably want to work for a hedge fund. While funds like Balyasny are paying an average of £1m ($1.2m) per head in London, Vanguard - the arch index fund provider is paying an average of just £167k according to accounts released this week. 

The accounts are for Vanguard Asset Services Ltd, which employs 834 people in London and has been doing some heavy hiring, as per the chart below. 

Most of the employees at Vanguard Asset Services work in either investment management or in operations and client services, and headcount in both areas increased by around 25% last year. 

At the same time, though, pay is falling. Back in 2020, Vanguard paid an average of £214k per head in London. In 2021, it paid an average of £188k. The squeeze is on. 

Last year's decline in average compensation came despite an increase in net profits, which rose from £17.5m to £20m at the London subsidiary. 

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor

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