Morgan Stanley Hires $2 Million Merrill Producer in Florida
Morgan Stanley Wealth Management’s revived recruiting efforts yielded a $2.1-million producer from Merrill Lynch in Florida last week and a $1.1-million broker based at an Oregon credit union a month ago, a spokeswoman confirmed.
Victor Panos, whose brokerage career began with Merrill in Orlando seven years ago, shifted to Morgan Stanley on Friday, according to his unmarked BrokerCheck history. The $2.1 million of revenue he generated for Merrill in the previous 12 months came from around $178 million in client assets, said a person familiar with his book.
In Coos Bay, Oregon, Morgan Stanley hired John Nicolaus on May 26 from Cuso Financial Services, an independent broker-dealer that services credit union advisors. His $1.1 million production came from customers with $120 million in their brokerage accounts.
“The process of deciding to move a book is worrisome in the best of times,” Nicolaus said in a prepared statement that noted his trepidation about shifting amid coronavirus constraints. “If I had known how positive the transition to Morgan Stanley was going to be, I’d have slept a whole lot better the quarter before, when I was weighing the decision.”
Nicolaus, who started his career at the now defunct Thomas James & Associates, worked at Merrill Lynch for just over a year before joining Cuna Brokerage Services in 1997, according to BrokerCheck.
Morgan Stanley last month hired a significantly larger team from UBS that was producing $5.1 million as part of its recommitment to recruiting after a pause coinciding with its withdrawal from the Protocol for Broker Recruiting in late 2017.
Merrill, which remains in the Protocol, halted veteran broker recruiting two years ago. The Bank of America-owned firm earlier this month lost teams managing over $2.7 billion to Raymond James, Sanctuary Wealth, Stifel Nicolaus & Co., and Rockefeller Capital Management.
A spokeswoman for Merrill Lynch did not immediately return a request for comment.