Morgan Stanley lands two broker teams from rival UBS

Tue Jan 29, 2013 4:23pm EST

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(Reuters) - Morgan Stanley Wealth Management said on Tuesday it added two veteran adviser teams that managed a combined $750 million in client assets from rival brokerage UBS Wealth Management Americas.

In Florida, adviser Kevin Cooper joined Morgan Stanley's Boca Raton office from UBS, where he managed $400 million in client assets and had annual revenue production of $1.6 million.

Cooper, who was a senior vice president at UBS, was listed among Florida's top advisers in a 2011 Barron's ranking. He now reports to Morgan Stanley complex manager Bert White.

In New Jersey, advisers John Ryan, David Nelson, James Gallagher and Philip Martinho joined Morgan Stanley's Shrewsbury office from UBS. The team managed $350 million in client assets and generated more than $2.8 million in annual revenue at the firm.

Both Ryan and Nelson were senior vice presidents at UBS, previously based out of the firm's Red Bank, New Jersey office. The team now reports to Morgan Stanley branch manager Todd Sacks.

Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, the largest U.S. brokerage by adviser headcount and client assets, is majority owned by Morgan Stanley and partially owned by Citigroup.

UBS Wealth Management Americas ranks fourth among top U.S. brokerages and is owned by the Swiss bank UBS AG.

The two wealth management units often vie for the same group of veteran advisers, along with Bank of America Corp's Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo & Co's Wells Fargo Advisors.

UBS confirmed the departures, but declined to comment further.

(Reporting by Ashley Lau in New York; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)

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