Morgan Stanley Lands $10-Million Goldman Team in Seattle
A team of Goldman Sachs brokers in Seattle with $10 million in production have joined Morgan Stanley’s private wealth group, a sign of wirehouses’ willingness to selectively hire mega-producers even as they tighten their operational belts.David Midgley, who was responsible for about 90% of his three-advisor team’s revenue in the past 12 months, arrived at the wirehouse two weeks ago. He had been with Goldman since 2005, according to his BrokerCheck history.
Midgley was interested in finding more flexibility in product choice and succession planning, according to Mindy Diamond, a recruiter who helped facilitate his move. He was frustrated with Goldman’s reluctance to allow him to make Sarem Mukhtar, who had worked with him for eight years, a partner on the team, among other reasons, she said.
“In years prior it used to be very rare to see a Goldman team leave,” said Diamond, who said she has moved six teams from the white-shoe investment bank in the past two years. “Goldman is a wonderful place and has the best imprimatur on the Street, but a lot of folks get to a place where they have outgrown this.”
A spokesman at Goldman, which in July acquired registered investment advisory rollup United Capital that caters to less affluent investors than the typical Goldman advisor, said he could not immediately comment on the Midgley team’s departure or Diamond’s comment.
A Morgan Stanley spokeswoman confirmed the group’s arrival. The wirehouse’s Seattle complex, which has around 120 brokers, last week named a new associate complex diretor who joined from Wells Fargo Advisors.
In addition to Midgley and Mukhtar, the team includes Michael Vint, who has less than one year’s experience as a registered rep, according to his BrokerCheck history. Mukhtar, who began his brokerage career eight years ago, has worked the entire time for Midgley at Goldman.
Midgley’s book at Goldman included about 40 households with some $2 billion of assets, according to a person familiar with the practice. He began his wealth management career in 2002 at Sanford C. Bernstein, according to his BrokerCheck record and sources familiar with his career.
Midgley, who also worked for seven years as an investment banker at Piper Jaffray, is at least the second advisor to leave Goldman’s private wealth management office in Seattle this summer.
Jacob M. Burns, one of the office’s approximately 15 advisors, joined JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s private banking unit in mid-July after 11 years with Goldman, according to his BrokerCheck record and a person familiar with the move. Burns, who began his wealth management career in 2000, did not respond to a request for comment.
In April, three Goldman advisors with $21 million in production and $6.6 billion in assets moved to UBS Wealth Management USA in Dallas, another example of a budget-conscious wirehouse that has been selectively hiring even as its total broker salesforce declines.
In July 2017, a pair of brokers who had been with Goldman for 12 years in Washington, D.C. joined Morgan Stanley, while a Los Angeles team producing more than $14 million left Goldman for First Republic four months later. Other Goldman brokers opened registered investment advisory firms in 2017 in Chicago and Palm Beach, Florida while a third Goldman veteran in Chicago went independent last year.
Goldman’s private wealth group has fewer than 600 brokers, excluding United Capital’s approximately 220 advisors in 90 offices, and is housed within the company’s asset management division. Its high-net-worth advisors on average have $4.5 million in production, well above big-bank competitors, former Goldman Chief Executive Lloyd Blankfein said in a 2018 presentation.