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Wells Fargo Loses More Veteran Reps to These Rivals

By Alex Padalka January 15, 2019

The exodus of Wells Fargo advisors continues uninterrupted into 2019, with five experienced representatives departing in recent days.

Peter Morimoto, Jon Jewitt and Roy Elliott Jr. join First Republic Bank in San Diego as managing directors and wealth managers, while Marena Tufenkjian joins as vice president and wealth manager, according to a press release from the company.

Morimoto had been with Wells Fargo for the majority of his 21-year career in wealth management, having joined the wirehouse in 1997 from Smith Barney, First Republic says.

Jewitt began his industry career at Wells Fargo predecessor AG Edwards in 1998, according to the press release.

Elliot, who’s been in the industry for 17 years, had come to Wells Fargo from Morgan Stanley in 2004, First Republic says.

Tufenkjian had been with Wells Fargo for her entire 13-year career in the industry, according to her BrokerCheck profile.

In New York, meanwhile, Wells Fargo Advisors lost Clifford Bartlett, III to Stifel Financial’s broker-dealer subsidiary, Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, according to a press release from Stifel. Bartlett has been in the industry since 1989 and had stints at Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley before joining Wells Fargo in 2008, according to his BrokerCheck profile.

He oversaw $100 million before joining Stifel, the company says.

More than 1,000 advisors have left Wells Fargo since the 2016 revelations that employees in the company’s retail banking unit opened millions of accounts without clients’ permission.

Regulators have kept the company in their crosshairs ever since, with the SEC and the Justice Department opening an investigation into sales practices in the company’s wealth management units at the end of 2017.

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So far in 2019, Wells Fargo has also lost representatives to LPL Financial, Ameriprise and Carson Wealth.

First Republic, meanwhile, has been aggressively poaching advisors from wirehouses. In addition to other Wells Fargo advisors, First Republic also nabbed representatives from Merrill Lynch and UBS last year.