Morgan Stanley has hired a significant Merrill Lynch Private Wealth Management team based in Florida and New Jersey

Morgan Stanley has hired a significant Merrill Lynch Private Wealth Management team based in New Jersey and Florida as it contributes to the list of multi-million-dollar hires from the rival wirehouse.

The group includes Lawrence W. Mercedes Fonte, Erik Beiermeister, Steven, his son, and Catena as well as 3 clientele associates. They’d been generating $7.5 million in annual fees and commissions, based on an individual familiar with the practice of theirs, and joined Morgan Stanley’s private wealth group for clients with $20 million or more in their accounts.
The staff had managed $735 million in client assets from 76 households who have an average net worth of fifty dolars million, as reported by Barron’s, which ranked Catena #33 out of eighty four best advisors in Florida in 2020. Mindy Diamond, an industry recruiter who worked with the group on their move, said that the total assets of theirs were $1.2 billion when factoring in new clients and market appreciation in the two years since Barron’s assessed the practice of theirs.

Catena, who spent all but a rookie year of his 30-year career at Merrill, didn’t return a request for comment on the team’s move, which took place in December, as reported by BrokerCheck.

Catena made the decision to move after the son Steven of his rejoined the team in February 2020 and Lawrence began considering a succession plan for the practice of his, as reported by Diamond.

“Larry always thought of himself as a lifer with Merrill-with no goal to make a move,” Diamond wrote in an email. “But, when the son of his, Steven, came into the business he soon began to view the firm of his through a whole new lens. Would it be good enough for the life of Steven’s career?”

The move comes as Merrill is launching an innovative enhanced sunsetting program in November that can add an extra seventy five percentage points to brokers’ payout when they agree to leave their book at the firm, but Diamond said the updated Client Transition Program wasn’t “on Larry’s radar” after he had decided to make the move of his.

Steven Catena started the career of his at Merrill in 2016 but sojourned at Prudential Investment Management from 2017 until 2020 before rejoining, as reported by FintechZoom.

Beiermeister, which works individually from a department in Florham Park, New Jersey, started the career of his at Merrill in 2001, as reported by BrokerCheck. Fonte started the career of her at Merrill in 2015.

A spokesperson for Merrill did not immediately return a request for comment.

Morgan Stanley has hired a significant Merrill Lynch Private Wealth Management team based in Florida and New Jersey
Morgan Stanley has hired a big Merrill Lynch Private Wealth Management team based in New Jersey and Florida

 

The group is actually at least the fifth that Morgan Stanley has hired from Merrill in recent months and also appears to be the biggest. Additionally, it hired a duo with $500 million in assets in Red Bank, New Jersey last month as well as a pair of advisors producing about $2.6 million from Merrill in Maryland.

In December, Morgan Stanley lured a solo producer in California who had won asset-growth accolades from Merrill and in October hired a 26-year Merrill lifer in a Chicago suburb who was generating much more than $2 million.

Morgan Stanley aggressively re entered the recruiting market last year after a three year hiatus, and executives have said that for the very first time in recent times it closed its net recruiting gap to near zero as the amount of new hires offset those that left.

It ended 2020 with 15,950 advisors – 482 more than 12 weeks earlier and 481 higher than at the conclusion of the third quarter. A lot of the increase came out of the inclusion of more than 200 E*Trade advisors who work primarily from call centers, a Morgan Stanley executive said.

Merrill Lynch, which has stood by the freeze of its on veteran broker recruiting put in place in 2017, no longer breaks out its number of branch based wealth management brokers from its consumer-bank-based Edge brokerage force.