Wells Fargo Hired 370 Brokers with $268 Million in Revenue in 2019
Wells Fargo Advisors is sharing with managers attending a meeting at its St. Louis headquarter this week the results of its accelerated recruiting efforts, saying that it hired 370 advisors last year who were generating $268 million in annual revenue at their former firms.
The new hires, to be sure, have not offset the continuing erosion, and the average recruit’s production of almost $725,000 trails that of experienced advisors at competitors such as UBS, Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch.
But recruiters said signing offers from Wells that can reach 325% of what brokers generated at their former firms are resonating.
“They’re recruiting across all levels [of production], and as long as you have $500,000 with good assets, they are offering a very big deal,” said Mark Elzweig, a New York recruiter who said the gross hires at Wells tower over those attracted by Wells’ large competitors.
Wells Fargo in the past three weeks hired million-dollar producers in Tennessee and New York from UBS and Citigroup Private Bank, and another two in Tennessee and Pennsylvania who generated $400,000 to $500,000 at Edward Jones and PNC Financial, a spokeswoman said.
Bryan Mayo joined a Wells Advisors branch in Knoxville on February 14 from UBS, where he managed around $150 million of client assets, she said. Mayo, who joined with a client associate, had been with UBS for 15 years, following 13 years with Smith Barney and predecessor firm Lehman Brothers, according to his BrokerCheck history.
The Citigroup private banker who Wells attracted in New York on February 7 is Owen H. Watstein, who was managing $370 million in client assets and works within a Wells bank branch, the spokeswoman said. Like Mayo, Watstein began his career with Lehman Brothers in the early 1990s, according to BrokerCheck.
Scott Carswell, the former Edward Jones broker, joined a Wells Advisors branch in Chattanooga Tennessee on February 14. He generated $500,000 in fees and commissions for Jones last year on about $63 million of client assets, according to Wells. Carswell began his brokerage career in 2001 at A.G. Edwards & Sons, and ran a Jones office for seven years, according to BrokerCheck.
In Reading, Pa., Wells attracted Justin Weible, who rejoined Wells after spending eight years with PNC Investments, the spokeswoman said. He began his brokerage career with M&T Securities and had a one-year stint at Wells from 2009 to 2010, according to BrokerCheck. Weible produced $400,000 in fees and production on $60 million in client assets, according to the spokeswoman.
The brokers declined to comment, or did not return calls for comment, about their moves.
Headcount at Wells Fargo’s private client group and its Financial Network independent contractor channel fell by a net 456 people in 2019 to 13,512 advisors. The average trailing-12-month production of last year’s recruits was 28% higher than those it attracted in 2018, the spokeswoman said. She declined to specify the number of new hires in 2018.