Wells Broker in Utah Migrates to Merrill
In a rare move that underscores an emerging rivalry between the two wirehouse firms still in the Protocol for Broker Recruiting, a Wells Fargo veteran has joined Merrill Lynch.
Lynn Brandenburg, a 24-year brokerage industry veteran in Salt Lake City, arrived at Merrill in mid-December from Well’s private client group in a previously unreported move.
He confirmed that he had been managing about $100 million in assets in his solo practice and was generating more than $1 million in fees and commissions, and said he moved in part because of a longtime acquaintance with Merrill’s Salt Lake City market executive Mori Paulsen.
Also motivating his move was a belief that the 45 or so business owners that comprise the bulk of his book will be able to negotiate more favorable banking rates and services from Bank of America, Merrill’s parent, than they were getting at Wells.
A Wells spokeswoman declined to comment.
For Merrill, Brandenburg’s hiring is a departure. The wirehouse retreated from offering large bonuses to experienced brokers last summer, in line with competitors Morgan Stanley and UBS, but said at the time that deals already in process would be honored. Brandenburg was among those prospects who were in the pipeline, said a person familiar with his move.
Brandenburg began his career at Lehman Brothers in 1993, moved to Prudential Securities in 2001 and stayed with Pru as it was absorbed into Wells in 2003.
At Merrill, Brandenburg has formed a team with Benjamin Rogers and a client associate. Rogers began his brokerage career last July at Merrill, according to his BrokerCheck record.
Brandenburg made headlines in 2001 when his former manager at Smith Barney froze about 200 accounts that customers had asked to transfer to the broker at Prudential Securities. The action prompted a civil complaint from Utah securities regulators and an industrywide change of policy on putting up impediments to the Automated Customer Account Transfer Service process, according to a Wall Street Journal report.