Morgan Stanley Hires Ex-UBS Complex Manager in Southern California
(Corrects fifth paragraph to say that consolidation and branch manager changes occurred in Santa Monica, not La Jolla.)
David H. Bigler, a former UBS complex manager in Beverly Hills, has re-entered the securities industry as a manager of Morgan Stanley’s San Diego branch.
Bigler, who left UBS in the summer of 2017 after 20 years with the company and predecessor firms, joined Morgan Stanley to lead its principal San Diego complex office at 101 Broadway in January, according to his BrokerCheck record and to a person at the branch.
Bigler, who had not been registered as a broker since his exit from UBS, declined to comment.
The job requirements of branch managers have shifted since Morgan Stanley and rivals Merrill Lynch and UBS Financial Services significantly reduced their hiring of brokers over the past two years, creating a churn among managers industrywide. Instead of focusing on recruiting big producers and mediating between them and corporate headquarters, they are now rewarded primarily for retaining brokers and motivating asset gathering and sale of bank products and services.
Morgan Stanley in December made other changes in southern California, combining several branches into a newly located ocean-view building in Santa Monica. As part of the consolidation, Santa Monica’s producing branch manager, Jeff Rush, moved to Beverly Hills as an advisor. He has been replaced by Nicholas Gormley, who had been chief operating officer for Morgan Stanley’s Pacific Coast regional head Curtis Peterson.
Bigler left UBS in July 2017 as part of a “mutual agreement” with the firm that was not related to compliance or sales practice issues, according to regulatory filings. He was serving as the company’s Western division sales manager when he left, following his stint overseeing the firm’s Beverly Hills and Century City branches.
The only “disclosure event” on Bigler’s BrokerCheck record is a customer complaint against him, a broker he supervised and a regional supervisor for $21.1 million. UBS settled the complaint for $1.5 million in February 2017, and an arbitration panel in October 2018 ordered the complaint to be expunged from the individuals’ records.