Wells Fargo Kentucky Team Bolts for Morgan Stanley
A pair of wirehouse veterans who built a prominent practice from a small Wells Fargo Advisors office in Bowling Green, Ky., has migrated to Morgan Stanley after more than a decade with Wells and predecessor Wachovia Securities.Steven A. Rogers, Ben Tomblinson and three associates made the move on Friday, according to their BrokerCheck reports. They produced around $4 million at Wells in the past year, said a person who claimed familiarity with their practice, and each ranked among the top 265 of more than 10,000 advisors in Wells’ private client group channel.
Neither Rogers not Tomblinson—who have 35 and 20 years of brokerage experience, respectively—returned calls for comments left at their new office.
Their move signals that Morgan Stanley continues to make exceptions to the broad recruiting pullback that it, Merrill Lynch and UBS initiated over the past two years as they focus on expense controls and training from within. New York-based Morgan Stanley last month recruited a $10-million team from J.P. Morgan Securities in Miami.
Rogers and Tomblinson are registered as working out of Nashville, but Morgan Stanley has created a website for the team listing Rogers as its branch manager in Bowling Green. Wells now has five advisors in the south-central Kentucky branch, according to its website.
“We’ve got a great business and branch in Bowling Green, and are very committed to the community,” said John Gardner, manager of Wells Fargo Advisors’ eight-office Bluegrass complex. “We wish them well.”
He declined to comment on Rogers and Tomblinson’s production or internal rankings.
Rogers joined Wachovia Securities in November 2006 after 21 years with UBS (and its predecessor firm J.C. Bradford & Co.) in Bowling Green. Vann Doyle, who made the move with him, remains at the Wells branch.
Tomblinson began his career with a seven-year stint at Morgan Stanley in 1999, according to BrokerCheck, but moved to Wachovia in Bowling Green in 2011 for an almost 13-year sojourn. Michael L. Jennings, who made the move with Tomblinson from Morgan Stanley to Wachovia, left Wells in 2013 for J.J.B. Hilliard, W.L. Lyons.
Wells Fargo Advisors, to be sure, remains the only one of the four “wirehouses” to be actively recruiting experienced advisors, as it looks to replenish a brokerage force that has attenuated in the wake of its sister bank’s fake-account scandals. Last week, it reached into Morgan Stanley to hire a million-dollar broker in Texas.