ON THE MOVE-Morgan Stanley lands two veteran advisers from rivals

April 25 Thu Apr 25, 2013 1:51pm EDT

April 25 (Reuters) - Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, the largest U.S. brokerage and majority-owned by Morgan Stanley , has bolstered its adviser force in California and Florida with two veteran hires from rival firms.

The new additions, who moved to Morgan Stanley in April, came from Deutsche Bank and Bank of America Corp's Merrill Lynch.

In Florida, Eric Behr joined Morgan Stanley's Boca Raton office from Deutsche Bank, where he was a director and client adviser. Behr, who has worked in the industry for more than two decades, had an annual revenue production of roughly $1.2 million. He reports to Morgan Stanley complex manager Michael Higgins in his new role.

In California, Thomas McCann joined Morgan Stanley's La Jolla office from Merrill, where he managed more than $200 million in client assets and last year generated about $1.1 million in revenue. McCann, who had been at Merrill since 1986, now reports to complex manager Mark Kremers at Morgan Stanley.

Morgan Stanley also said it hired adviser David Rascoe from Wells Fargo & Co's U.S. brokerage division, Wells Fargo Advisors. Rascoe, who joined Morgan Stanley's San Diego office, managed $80 million in client assets and last year generated $905,000 in revenue.

Bank of America, Deutsche Bank and Wells Fargo confirmed the departures but declined to comment further.

Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, which is partially owned by Citigroup Inc, was formed out of the merger of Morgan Stanley's wealth division and Citi's Smith Barney in 2009. The combined unit created the largest U.S. brokerage by adviser headcount and client assets under management.

Merrill Lynch and Wells Fargo Advisors are the second- and third-largest U.S. brokerages, following Morgan Stanley. The firms often compete for the same pool of top advisers.

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