ON THE MOVE-Ameriprise hires veteran Morgan Stanley broker team

Sept 5 Wed Sep 5, 2012 10:49am EDT

Sept 5 (Reuters) - Ameriprise Financial Inc has expanded its adviser force in Connecticut after landing two veteran brokers from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney.

Advisers Robert Ceccarelli and John Hursh moved on Friday to Ameriprise, where they are now a team based out of the firm's New Haven office. The advisers managed $148 million in client assets at their old firm and together generated nearly $1 million in annual revenue last year.

"There seems to be not only a client focus, but also a financial adviser focus that's pretty refreshing," said Hursh in an interview about his decision to move. "Even though we're employees, it feels like a real partnership."

Both Ceccarelli and Hursh were legacy Citigroup Smith Barney advisers who joined Morgan Stanley Smith Barney after the merger of Citi's Smith Barney with Morgan Stanley's wealth division in 2009.

A Morgan Stanley Smith Barney spokeswoman confirmed the departures, but declined to comment further.

Hursh, a 30-year industry veteran, was a senior vice president at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney. Both Hursh and Ceccarelli also had worked at Prudential Securities.

The advisers joined Ameriprise's traditional employee broker-dealer unit, which now has more than 2,300 advisers, an 8 percent increase from last year.

"We noticed that Ameriprise is recruiting quite a few brokers from wirehouses," Hursh said, in reference to veteran advisers who have moved away from big bank-owned brokerages. "We sense they're growing quickly, which is in alignment with what we want to do."

The company has about 7,500 additional advisers in its independent channel and a total of $330.8 billion in client assets under management as of the end of June.

Many of the firm's big broker recruits this year have come from top U.S. brokerages, including Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, Bank of America's Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo Advisors.

Photo

After wave of QE, onus shifts to leaders to boost economy

DAVOS, Switzerland - Central banks have done their best to rescue the world economy by printing money and politicians must now act fast to enact structural reforms and pro-investment policies to boost growth, central bankers said on Saturday.