AG Edwards vs. Major Wires?

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May 30, 2007 10:03 pm

I keep hearing the "work environment" is a lot better, avoiding some of the hostile culture of the majors. (ML, MS, SB, etc.) True? Comments? I'm on the market and looking at them all. Thanks in advance.

May 30, 2007 10:09 pm

AG Edwards is the ONLY large firm I would consider. Luckily, I'll never have to consider something like that.

May 31, 2007 1:58 am

That seems in line with a lot of comments I've heard before. Why though? Why AGE and not Smith Barney or Morgan Stanley, for example?

May 31, 2007 7:42 am
Bobby Hull:

AG Edwards is the ONLY large firm I would consider. Luckily, I'll never have to consider something like that.


Bobby, you don't seem like the bank-type to me.


UPDATE: Wachovia To Acquire A.G. Edwards For $6.8 Billion


May 31, 2007: 06:56 AM EST


DOW JONES NEWSWIRES


Wachovia Corp. (WB) agreed to acquire A.G. Edwards Inc. (AGE), in a $6.8 billion deal that will create the second-largest retail brokerage, with $1.1 trillion in client assets.


Wachovia, Charlotte, will pay A.G. Edwards shareholders 0.9844 shares of Wachovia stock and $35.80 cash for each A.G. Edwards share, for total consideration of $89.50. The deal, expected to close in the first quarter of 2009, represents a 16% premium to A.G. Edwards's Wednesday close of $77.15.


The deal makes Wachovia the second-largest retail brokerage in the U.S., after Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc. (MER), and propelling Wachovia past Citigroup Inc.'s ( C) Smith Barney.


David Carroll, president of Wachovia's Capital Management Group, said that as consolidation continues in the brokerage industry, the opportunity to combine with a premier firm like A.G. Edwards was "a rare chance to solidify our leadership in the industry with the scope and resources required to be the firm of choice for clients and for quality financial advisors."


Wachovia said the combined company will have 15,000 financial advisors and an increased presence in 48 of the 50 largest metropolitan areas.


The combined retail brokerage will have its headquarters in St. Louis. Other A.G. Edwards businesses including research, underwriting and investment banking, mutual funds and trust will be consolidated into Wachovia's existing lines of business.


Wachovia Securities President and Chief Executive Daniel J. Ludeman will be president of the combined company, and A.G. Edwards Chairman and Chief Executive Robert L. Bagby will be chairman of Wachovia Securities.


The combined company is expected to save $395 million in expenses by 2009. The company anticipates merger-related and restructuring charges, as well as exit- cost purchase accounting adjustments of $860 million related to the transaction over 18 months.


Wachovia expects the transaction add to earnings per share, excluding merger- related and restructuring expenses and intangibles amortization in the first full year after the closing, not including the effect of one-time charges. The company also said the transaction provides an internal rate of return of 24%, more than the cost of capital.


In October, Wachovia closed the acquisition of Golden West Financial Corp. for $24 billion. The deal expanded Wachovia's mortgage business, an industry that had slowed at the time of the buyout.

May 31, 2007 8:29 am
xbanker:

I keep hearing the "work environment" is a lot better, avoiding some of the hostile culture of the majors. (ML, MS, SB, etc.) True? Comments? I'm on the market and looking at them all. Thanks in advance.


More than anything else, to the individual rep, the "culture" is determined by the specific office. Ignore anyone who tells you the majors have a "hostile culture", they were probably dismissed by one.


May 31, 2007 9:57 am

He's right. Every AGE I've been in has a clique-ish environment where pretty much most business plans seem to be directed by the BOM. I've been into a branch that did nothing but 401k rollover plans for employees of major fortune 500 companies and another that did nothing but 401k corporate plans!

May 31, 2007 12:00 pm

I'm told the AGE rep enjoyed the work evironment the most out out of any other wirehouse/regional.  I don't know if that's true, but it looks like it could change dramatically.

May 31, 2007 12:59 pm
bXpress:

I'm told the AGE rep enjoyed the work evironment the most out out of any other wirehouse/regional.  I don't know if that's true, but it looks like it could change dramatically.



I don't know, that could be true. But aren't those the same surveys that always place Edwards #1? That makes them more than just a little suspect to me. OTOH, the general impression I've always felt from guys there is that they liked it. I hope the transition works out well for them.

May 31, 2007 2:43 pm

I am a recruiter working exclusively for MS nationwide. If you are interested, call my direct line at (713) 523-1828.

May 31, 2007 3:03 pm

Rep. has a good story on it's home page, with great comments from analysts:


http://registeredrep.com/advisorland/WachoviaBuys_AGEdwards /

May 31, 2007 3:30 pm
May 31, 2007 3:31 pm