ON THE MOVE-RBC Wealth hires former Morgan Stanley manager

March 22 Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:38pm EDT

March 22 (Reuters) - RBC Wealth Management, a division of the Royal Bank of Canada , said on Friday it hired a veteran manager from Morgan Stanley Wealth Management to expand the firm's presence in southern California.

Michael Melton, who had been with Morgan Stanley and its predecessor wealth management firms for roughly a decade, joined RBC's San Diego office last week as a branch director.

In his new role, Melton will help expand RBC's adviser presence in the region, which already includes offices in Beverly Hills, Century City, Escondido, La Jolla, Long Beach, Newport Beach, Pasadena and Manhattan Beach.

Melton, who has worked in the industry for more than 20 years, had also previously worked at UBS AG's U.S. wealth management division earlier in his career. He later joined Citigroup and then Morgan Stanley Wealth Management after Citi's Smith Barney merged with Morgan Stanley's wealth unit in 2009.

Morgan Stanley declined to comment on Melton's departure.

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 $235 billion in client assets.