ON THE MOVE-Morgan Stanley hires 5 high-producing brokers

NEW YORK, July 11 Fri Jul 11, 2014 12:13pm EDT

NEW YORK, July 11 (Reuters) - During the same pre-Fourth of July week when wealth management firm Wells Fargo Advisers hired eight new high-producing brokers, rival firm Morgan Stanley was making its own recruiting catches.

Morgan Stanley announced on Thursday that it hired five top financial advisers, who collectively produced nearly $7 million in revenue in the last twelve months, away from its competitors. The new recruits joined the firm during a 10-day period stretching from Tuesday, June 24 to Thursday, July 3.

Brokers Richard Duffy and Russell Kwok started at Morgan Stanley's Los Angeles, California office on June 24. They previously worked for J.P. Morgan Securities where the two produced a combined $3.5 million in revenue over the last twelve months.

A J.P. Morgan Securities' spokesman declined to comment on their departure.

On June 26, Brian Purcell joined Morgan Stanley in Santa Rosa, California from Bank of America's Merrill Lynch, where he generated $1.3 million in revenue over the last year and managed $115 million in client assets.

Morgan Stanley hired financial adviser Dante Neyra the following day, June 27, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, also away from Bank of America's Merrill Lynch division. At Merrill, Neyra generated $1.1 million in revenue in the most recent twelve months.

Most recently, Linda Goodson joined Morgan Stanley in Palm Harbor, Florida on July 3 from Wells Fargo Advisors. Goodson generated $1 million in revenue in the last twelve months and managed $110 million in client assets.

In the week before the holiday, Wells Fargo Advisors, the nation's third-largest brokerage firm by sales force, hired eight financial advisers who collectively managed more than $1 billion in combined client assets.

Morgan Stanley spokesman James Wiggins said the firm is focused on recruiting "accomplished professionals on a regular basis." While the firm does not publicly announce all hires, he said the firm generally report hires of individuals or teams with more than $1 million in trailing-twelve-months' revenue.

Neither Merrill Lynch nor Wells Fargo was immediately available for comment.

Morgan Stanley, which employed 16,426 financial advisers at the end of March, is the world's biggest brokerage by the size of sales force. (Reporting by Elizabeth Dilts; Editing by Chris Reese)

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