Trainee or RIA

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Jun 5, 2009 1:57 pm

I'm a new trainee with a wirehouse. I was able to negotiate a salary of $95K + bonus. My question is, are there an advantages to start out in a wire house with a decent salary before going independent, or should I bite the bullet and just go for it. I feel there is good value in the training aspect of the wirehouse. But its hard to deny the benefits of the RIA set up. Thoughts?

Jun 5, 2009 2:15 pm

Are you kidding me?  If you are getting 95K plus bonus for a few years, that's a no-brainer.  As long as you make it, that's a huge help, as long as you still spend money like you're broke.  My suggestion - plow as much $$ into your business as possible from day 1 (obviously make it count).  Get as amny clients and assets on board as possible in your first 3-5 years.  Then the world will be your oyster.

Jun 5, 2009 2:48 pm

What wire is paying 95K?

Jun 5, 2009 5:02 pm

I should mention that I was able to negotiate that because the team I am "with" jumped firms just before I got my number, so my salary was part of the deal but I wasn't part of the lock up because I didn't have my production number yet. I skated by pretty good.

Jun 5, 2009 5:04 pm

Good insight. Thanks for the confirmation.

Jun 5, 2009 5:05 pm

I've been sworn to secrecy by both the complex manager and the divisional manager to never utter a word about my salary. So I won't mention which wirehouse it is. Sorry, but I promise you it is legit, 100%.

Jun 5, 2009 5:12 pm
mtlobo:

I should mention that I was able to negotiate that because the team I am "with" jumped firms just before I got my number, so my salary was part of the deal but I wasn't part of the lock up because I didn't have my production number yet. I skated by pretty good.

 
Liar.
Jun 5, 2009 5:19 pm

mmmm-kay.

Jun 6, 2009 7:43 am

mtlobo - the math doesn't add up.  what firm is going to risk that kind of capital on someone that has less than a 10% chance of succeeding?  it doesn't make sense from an acturial standpoint. 

 
even if what you say is true, i'd leave.  I wouldn't want to be part of a firm that is that fiscally irresponsible.  is this a federal government wirehouse?
Jun 8, 2009 1:19 pm

Federal Gov't Wirehouse? I assume your joking?...I left merrill to another competing wirehouse. I came from a completely different industry and when I was hired on at merrill, I simply explained to the complex manager what I needed to pay the bills, etc. I actually took a pay cut! When the team I was on made the move out of Merrill, we provided pay stubs to the recruiting firm and they matched. Granted, they ride us hard to make sure we perform, which we are.

 
There seems to be a lot of focus surrounding my salary, when my initial question is whether there is a benefit of going independent or staying through my training phase and then jumping. I'm looking for a good piece of information based upon my situation so I thought it would be applicable. Cleary I've struck a nerve.
Jun 8, 2009 1:32 pm
mtlobo:

Federal Gov't Wirehouse? I assume your joking?...I left merrill to another competing wirehouse. I came from a completely different industry and when I was hired on at merrill, I simply explained to the complex manager what I needed to pay the bills, etc. I actually took a pay cut! When the team I was on made the move out of Merrill, we provided pay stubs to the recruiting firm and they matched. Granted, they ride us hard to make sure we perform, which we are.



There seems to be a lot of focus surrounding my salary, when my initial question is whether there is a benefit of going independent or staying through my training phase and then jumping. I'm looking for a good piece of information based upon my situation so I thought it would be applicable. Cleary I've struck a nerve.





Mtlobo - you haven't struck a nerve. People are just cautious about giving advice out to trolls. Which when you talk about a 95k salary, people are little skeptical.



I own an RIA - so to answer your question - i think it is better to go RIA. But that's my bias. I have never worked for a wire.



As for a Federal Gov't Wirehouse - of course I'm joking. I was talking about fiscal irresponsibility, as it is fiscally irresponsible to pay someone that kind of jack as a salary. It doesn't make sense from a financial standpoint. When you price a factor of production (you), you don't pay more than it's worth (you are in training). I can imagine doing a capital project proposal for that. My guess is it wouldn't make it past the first accounting analyst that saw it.



Just saying. It's great if you get paid that much, I just know it would never make sense from my perspective.





Jun 8, 2009 1:41 pm

I can understand that. I think the only reason why it penciled for the recruting firm is because of the team I was recruited with. There are 2 advisors with production in excess of $1MM 3 others who have great production ($600K). It was a big recruting windfall for the firm so they were bending over backward to make it happen. But that said, Merrill hired me straight up at that salary. But then again, they had to be bailed out by BofA so you're right on. But I can honestly say, I've been in official production for 2 weeks and have ACATs for almost $10MM coming in (family and friends). So, I'll pull my weight.

Jun 11, 2009 10:48 pm

In 2008, my firm (a wire) was paying new hires, with no experience salaries of 75k-125k on a regular basis. 95k would not surprise me at all, except if it was in 2009 then I would be surprised, we have not hired trainees at all in 2009.

Oct 11, 2009 11:19 am

My Guess is Morgan Stanley.

 
I believe it.
 
Stick with the team, and build all of the relationships you can. Do not create any vices for yourself, such as living a lifestyle way beyond your means, stay away from the gold diggers.
 
Focus on your business.  (laser)
 
Create a Vision 3-5 years out much larger than you can conceive right now in the early stages of your career.
 
 
Oct 11, 2009 9:47 pm

Hi MT! Stay with your wirehouse.  The best training I received was from Shearson when I first started out at 22. That was in 1992! They ride you hard, but you'll learn a lot! Hang out for a few years and then go RIA, there's nothing like "freedom"...

 
Try to find a "niche" you really enjoy- if your clients are your friends it will make the transition much easier! Watch your employment agreement with the wirehouse and coming from a female on this forum...Watch out for the gold diggers!
 
PS buy a house before you buy the Porche 911.
 
GOOD LUCK!
Oct 12, 2009 12:16 am

Arrrrgggh!!! YA GOT ME!!!  Blame it on the cabernet!

Nov 17, 2009 9:42 pm

With that kind of deal, be a team player for now and stay with them.  Learn from them, but eventually develop your own marketing style.  If you like it there, then that's fine, but if you need to spread your wings later on go independent.  Remember, you need to be comfortable with whose filing cabinet you leave your book of business with - yours or theirs.