Have you ever spoken with your finance friends and wondered what exactly they were saying? It often feels as if Wall Streeters have their own language, especially when talking about what they do.
Alan Li, a former Goldman Sachs analyst, explained some popular banker jargon on a recent episode of his podcast, “The Vampire Squid.”
“Financial jargon,” Li said, “is any financial professional’s way of saying something very direct in a very abstract way.”
Here are seven key financial phrases, according to Li:
- Revealing the kimono:Sayingsomething straight, without the sugar coating, even if it’s negative. As in, “Oh gosh, the other company is asking too many questions. We’re going to have to reveal the kimono sooner or later.”Fire drill:An impending deadline or meeting that presents a big time crunch to get work done. As in,”Guys, I can’t go out to eat dinner tonight – I’m on a fire drill until 10 p.m.”Out of pocket: Not able to respond to anything because a person is at an event or doesn’t have any phone service. As in, “Mr. MD I can’t join the 3 p.m. call. I’m going to be in Patagonia; I’m going to be out of pocket.” Underwater:Too much work. As in, “Hey I can’t get a beer with you right now. My MD just gave me a 30-page deck that’s due tomorrow. I’m underwater.”Burning the midnight oil:Working late into the night. As in, “Alan, I need this model from scratch done by tomorrow morning. I know it’s 10 p.m. already, but please don’t burn the midnight oil.”Bandwidth:Capacity. As in, “Alan, I got a really exciting new project. How’s your bandwidth looking?”Face time:Being seen in the office as to be noticed by senior people, whether or not there is actual work to be done. As in, “Geez all Alan does is face time until 3 a.m. He doesn’t even do any work.”