How's Merrill Lynch?

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Jan 28, 2016 12:36 am

Hi,

I used to work at small brokerage firm for a while, but I quit and am looking for an analyst position. Currently Merrill Lynch has kept contacting me to have an interview for PMD program. Can you answer some questions?

1. I heard there is base salary + commission. How much does Merrill Lynch pay base salary for PMD advisor? 

2. What percentage of commission payout do they offer?

3. Can financial advisors change careers to analysts in BOA or Merrill? (I have a nice Master's degree)

4. How is PMD advisor's work? Are they forced to make cold callings a lot? and how many training hours are there per a day?

Thank you,

Mar 25, 2016 4:13 pm

1) Depending on your area, they will initially pay you around $50,000 a year for the first year plus your commissions. Each year after that, the salary will decline gradually over the duration of the program. I believe it decreases down to $37,500 by the end of the program. The idea behind that is that your salary will be decreasing but your compensation from your AUM will be increasing.
2) I am not entirely sure, but I believe the payout grid is approx 30-35%.
3) Even though Merrill Lynch is owned by BofA, the investment banking division is separate from the wealth management division. It may help, but it would be smarter to try and dive directly into an analyst position if thats what you are interested in.
4) Truth be told for the first 3 years at ML in the PMD program, you will be a glorified salesman. ML doesn't care how you bring in clients as long as you are meeting your hurdles. This means you can be in the office as much, or as little, as you like but ultimately you are responsible for building your book of business. Basically ML is "investing" in you by paying you a salary as you build a book of business, but if you are not making your hurdles you will be dropped. I wouldn't expect much help from management in regards to generating leads; you are on your own unless you partner with a senior FA (but be careful, they may not have your best interest at heart). Cold calling is still effective and it is really just a numbers game. At the end of the day, ML will give you an office, a phone, a computer, and say, "go." What you make of it will be up to you