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Nov 16 (Reuters) - Wells Fargo & Co said on Friday it hired 24 veteran advisers over the past three months from rival brokerages, expanding the company's private client group across the country.
The brokers, who in total managed more than $2 billion in client assets at their old firms, came from the U.S. brokerages of Morgan Stanley, Bank of America, UBS AG, Royal Bank of Canada, Stifel Financial Corp and Wedbush Morgan.
"It sounds old-fashioned, but Wells reminds me of the way the industry was like when I started back in 1978 - very much focused on the clients," said California-based adviser Nancy Johnson, who came from Morgan Stanley Wealth Management.
Johnson joined Wells' Irvine office in October with fellow adviser Susan Ellena. The two managed $210 million in client assets at Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, the brokerage majority owned by Morgan Stanley and partially owned by Citigroup.
Johnson, along with the other new hires, joined Wells' private client group. The biggest division within the company's St. Louis-based brokerage business, it has more than 15,000 advisers with $1.2 trillion in client assets among its brokerage subsidiaries.
Wells also has a broker-dealer unit for independent advisers and a separate division of advisers who work in bank branches.
The advisers' previous employers either declined to comment or did not return requests for comment.
From Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, advisers Andrew Siegel, Nickolaus Roeschley and William Kulesh also moved to Wells in October. They managed $231 million in client assets and joined Wells' Scottsdale, Arizona office, where they report to branch manager Robert Burghart.
In Texas, advisers Chris Queen, Peggy Etheridge and Jason Hofnagel joined Wells in August from Morgan Stanley, where they managed $206 million in client assets. The advisers are based out of Wells' Plano office and report to branch manager Jim Doran.
In Arkansas, advisers Curtis Coburn and Wade Meeks joined Wells in September from Morgan Stanley, as previously reported by Reuters. The advisers managed $127 million in client assets and are now based out of Wells' Little Rock office, where they report to branch manager Mark Trevillian.
From Bank of America's Merrill Lynch, advisers Robert Evans, Walt Shinault and Richard Hastings moved to Wells in August. The advisers, who managed $250 million in client assets, joined Wells' Oxford, Mississippi branch, where they report to branch manager Allen Kimbrell.
In West Virginia, adviser W. Howard Humphrey joined Wells in August from Merrill, where he managed $101 million in client assets. Humphrey, who has worked in the advising industry for 20 years, is based out of Wells' Parkersburg office and reports to complex manager Charles Capito.
From UBS AG's Wealth Management Americas, advisers Robert Shwedel and Andrea Roth joined Wells in November in Walnut Creek, California. The advisers, a father-and-daughter team, managed $196 million in client assets at UBS. They report to branch manager Kevin Smith at Wells.
In Illinois, adviser Rich Ceffalio rejoined Wells in November after four years at UBS, where he managed $165 million in client assets. Ceffalio, based out of Wells' Arlington Heights office, reports to branch manager George Styskal.
In Maryland, adviser Susan Gallagher moved to Wells in October from UBS, where she managed $146 million in client assets. Gallagher, who has worked in the advising industry for 29 years, joined Wells' Bethesda office and reports to complex manager Buck Grier.
In Pennsylvania, adviser Curt Coulter joined Wells in August from UBS, where he managed $134 million in client assets. Coulter is based out of Wells' Pittsburgh office, where he reports to market manager Nicholas Bruno.
From Wedbush Morgan, adviser Greg Moore joined Wells' Portland, Oregon office in November. Moore managed $139 million in client assets at Wedbush and now reports to complex manager Kirk Mandlin.
From RBC Wealth Management, the U.S. brokerage owned by the Royal Bank of Canada , advisers Robert Hart and Thomas Tonkovich joined Wells' Spring Lake, New Jersey office. The advisers, who moved in September, managed $107 million in client assets and now report to complex manager John Puzio.
From Stifel Nicolaus, a subsidiary of Stifel Financial Corp , adviser Allen Wilson moved to Wells in August. He managed $212 million in client assets and joined Wells' Morristown, New Jersey office, where he reports to complex manager Tom Thives.
In Chicago, adviser Bradley Gummow joined Wells in October from Stifel Nicolaus. Gummow, who has worked as an adviser for 30 years, managed $100 million in client assets at the firm. He reports to complex manager Kevin Ortmeyer.