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Merrill Lynch Loses FAs Collectively Managing Over $1.5 Billion

July 31, 2018

First Republic Private Wealth Management has scored another recruiting victory, luring a 26-year Merrill Lynch veteran, AdvisorHub writes. And a team of mostly millennial advisors at Merrill Lynch have opted for independence, according to a press release from Dynasty Financial Partners, with which the new firm is partnering.

Sam Hodgson oversaw around $650 million and generated over $4 million in fees and commissions annually, sources familiar with the move tell the industry news website.

Hodgson had joined Merrill Lynch in 1991 and catered primarily to wealthy families and executives with company stock options, AdvisorHub writes. He did not return the website’s request for comment.

Hodgson had been in a two-person team at Merrill Lynch, and his partner, Matthew Hart, stayed with the wirehouse, where he’s been for the entire 12 years he’s spent in the financial services industry, according to AdvisorHub. Hart declined comment to the website.

Hodgson’s switch follows Merrill Lynch’s loss of a $4.5 billion advice team led by Jim Atwood to First Republic in April.

Atwood had been with Merrill for the entirety of his 33-year career in the industry.

First Republic’s private wealth management division now has around 150 brokers working from 70 locations, according to AdvisorHub.

The company’s wealth management assets have reached $121.1 billion as of June 30, a 26.9% rise over the previous year, which the firm has attributed to rising markets and net new assets from new and existing clients.

Meanwhile, 34-year-old Michael Henley has formed Wyeth Private Wealth, headquartered in Chadds Ford, Pa., according to Dynasty. Prior to launching his own independent firm, where he’s taken the role of CEO, Henley had been with Merrill Lynch for 10 years, Dynasty says in its press release.

Also joining Henley from Merrill Lynch are private wealth advisors Alison Brooks and Mark Jackson, private wealth managers Steve Maconi and Tracy McGuire, as well as private wealth relationship manager Brittany Kalsky, who’ll serve as Wyeth’s chief compliance officer, and senior private wealth associate Erin Yake and private wealth associate David Clark, according to Dynasty. Henley’s team, most of whom are in their early or mid-30s, managed $930 million at Merrill Lynch, FA magazine writes.

Merrill Lynch has lost some large producers to rivals recently. Earlier this month the wirehouse lost a pair of veteran advisors managing $465 million to RBC Wealth Management.

Nonetheless, advisor ranks have remained relatively flat year over year at Merrill Lynch.

By the end of the second quarter, Merrill Lynch had 14,820 advisors, and an executive at the firm told InvestmentNews earlier this month attrition rates have been at record lows.

By Alex Padalka
  • To read the Advisor Hub article cited in this story, click here.
  • To read the FA Magazine article cited in this story, click here.