100% of 3 Pros
I would say that it depends on what you're looking for. Also, there are differences within those classifications as well. In general, the pressure is higher on the Sell side. On the Sell side, you're focus is on making money for clients, but also your shareholders. On the Buy side, you're primarily focused on your performance for your clients. If integrity is a big factor for you, that may be something you want to consider, but I wouldn't say the Buy side is filled with angels. Within the Buy side world there's a big difference between working in Private Equity from something like a Mutual Fund. The pressure would tend to be higher with Private Equity, but that's also because more of your compensation is tied to the performance of your assets. So in a sense, even if you're on vacation, you may always need to be available if a deal is happening. My experience was as an intern at an equity Mutual Fund. It was not an easy internship to get. I had to wait until after my first year of business school was over, which was quite a risk. But I enjoyed the experience. I did notice that the work life balance was much less stressful than my prior role in consumer banking. Portfolio Managers, Analysts and Traders generally worked along market hours and I would say the pressure levels were lower. However, I would have expected the long term compensation to be lower than say, Private Equity, or having gone to be a Sell Side equity analyst.
It's not so much that entering Sell side before Buy side is better....just that many Buy side firms look to hire experienced analysts with sell side experience.