More Defections From Morgan Stanley (Or, More To The Point, Smith Barney)


Bud Wilson and his two associates in Westlake Village, California have defected to Raymond James, taking a total of 63 years of experience under Smith Barney with them.


The team ran $415 million for Morgan Stanley but only generated a ROA of 0.55% on those assets for annual production of $2.3 million.


Significantly, Wilson bemoans what his old firm has become, noting that Smith Barney a quarter century ago was "very boutique" and "a wonderful place to work."


He calls the new Morgan Stanley regime "too bureaucratic."


Three other advisors have fled to UBS and Baird Private Wealth Management.


All were originally from the Smith Barney side of the Morgan Stanley "family" and handled about $600 million in client assets between them.


Ex-Smith Barney reps have been defecting for months now.


And unlike other wirehouses, which sometimes seem to operate like revolving doors for advisors, Morgan Stanley does not seem to be replacing those defectors by luring an equivalent number of top producers from Merrill Lynch, UBS, and so on.


Compare to Merrill Lynch in particular, where advisors are riding high and attrition is -- at the moment -- at a record low.



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