Jim Eccleston: Morgan Stanley Suffers Big Asset Loss

From the Desk of Jim Eccleston at Eccleston Law:

The nation’s largest brokerage by adviser head count, Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, lost $8.4 billion in client assets during the third quarter, as some of its major producers took their business to competing firms. In the three-month period ended September 30, 2013, the average assets under management of advisers who moved also jumped nearly 25% from the previous year, to $402.2 million. Generally speaking, adviser movement with small books of businesses is not tracked by the data, and advisers do not necessarily take all of their business to the new firm.

Four of the 10 largest departures from Morgan Stanley in the third quarter were to other wirehouses. Three teams managing $7.9 billion in assets moved to UBS Financial Services Inc., while a $1 billion team in the New York area switched to Wells Fargo Advisors LLC.Morgan Stanley did add some major advisers last quarter. However, high-profile losses appeared to offset Morgan Stanley’s recruitment successes last quarter.

Given that Morgan Stanley had 16,321 advisers and $1.8 trillion in assets at the end of the second quarter, according to the company’s regulatory filings, it still is the largest wirehouse by advisers and the second largest by assets.

The attorneys of Eccleston Law represent investors and advisers nationwide in securities and employment matters.

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