ON THE MOVE-RBC Wealth lands veteran Merrill Lynch broker

Thu Nov 8, 2012 3:52pm EST

Nov 8 (Reuters) - RBC Wealth Management, a division of the Royal Bank of Canada , has expanded its adviser footprint in Arizona with a veteran hire from Bank of America's Merrill Lynch.

Harold Langer, who has worked in the industry for roughly three decades, moved to RBC in October after six years at Merrill Lynch. He managed $180 million in client assets and last year had $1.2 million in annual revenue production.

Richard Schaefer, who runs the RBC Tucson office where Langer joined, said the vast majority of Langer's client base has already moved with him to RBC.

"Within a couple of hours, our lobby was full," said Schaefer, referring to clients who showed up on the same day to re-paper their accounts with Langer at RBC. "I have never seen this quick a response by any other broker."

Brokers like Langer who follow an industry protocol are prevented from disclosing their decision to move to their clients until the day they resign from their old firm. Because of those limitations, it can be difficult to gauge how many of an adviser's clients will move with him or her to a new firm.

Langer joined RBC as a senior vice president and financial adviser. He was previously a senior vice president at Merrill Lynch and had also been an adviser with UBS earlier in his career, according to regulatory filings.

Toronto-based RBC, Canada's largest retail bank and the one most focused on wealth management, has set its sights on global wealth management as a key driver for growth. RBC Wealth Management has about 2,000 advisers managing more than $227 billion in client assets.

RBC last month also hired a veteran team of advisers from Merrill Lynch in Kansas. The team, known as the Haynes & Woodward Investment Group, managed $130 million in client assets.