Most advisors say they are very likely to be working for their current firm over the next year, but it is interesting to wonder where they would go if they left. The most popular answer was “other,” at 38 percent, with many respondents writing in that they would be most interested in joining a regional firm like Benjamin Edwards or Stifel. Going independent was also a popular response, reflecting the data in the 2014 Independent Broker/Dealer Report Card. A lot of Wells Fargo advisors also said they would consider joining FiNet, Wells Fargo’s network for independent advisors.
Just looking at the big national firms, Raymond James & Associates was the most popular destination, with 23 percent selecting it as their choice if they left their current firm. Merrill was the most popular choice among Morgan Stanley advisors considering a change, while advisors at UBS and Merrill Lynch both named Morgan Stanley as the national firm they would be most interested in joining.