Ex Merrill FA recruited by Edward Jones

or Register to post new content in the forum

11 RepliesJump to last post

 

Comments

  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
Dec 31, 2008 1:56 am

After spending nearly 12 years in both banking and independent planning environments, I joined Merrill last year to build my own business. Unfortunately no one was really willling to sign ACATS this Fall, and I was left go in early December. Jones has contacted me regarding a position....my former Merrill colleagues have said "don't do it". Any advice on what to negotiate for with the Jones recruiters, or a potential starting salary. I do not have a big enough book to leverage at this point....I was in Private banking and am a CFP.


Thanks!

Dec 31, 2008 5:43 am
feebasedrep:

After spending nearly 12 years in both banking and independent planning environments, I joined Merrill last year to build my own business. Unfortunately no one was really willling to sign ACATS this Fall, and I was left go in early December. Jones has contacted me regarding a position....my former Merrill colleagues have said "don't do it". Any advice on what to negotiate for with the Jones recruiters, or a potential starting salary. I do not have a big enough book to leverage at this point....I was in Private banking and am a CFP.


Thanks!

 
As a non-Edward Jones rep, I've always been facinated by the rave reviews Jones reps give their own firm.  Reps love it there.  However, the Jones platform is extremely limited (by design).  No options, paid more on A-shares, lack of fee based and lending capabilities.  Edwards is starting to offer more, but they are primarily an A share mutual fund sales person shop. 
 
As a fellow CFP, I would ask them about their planning software that is available to the reps.  As a planner, I prefer to have my compensation tied to my clients goals.  That's the reason my business is fee based.  I think it can be a conflict of interest for me to be compensated upfront when my clients' goals are years into the future.  Jones, from what I understand, doesn't share that view and preaches A share mutual funds and A share annuities b/c they are the lowest cost options for their clients if they hold the investments long term.  It is a philisophical difference that you may want to address before signing on. 
 
Dec 31, 2008 10:06 am
feebasedrep:

After spending nearly 12 years in both banking and independent planning environments, I joined Merrill last year to build my own business. Unfortunately no one was really willling to sign ACATS this Fall, and I was left go in early December. Jones has contacted me regarding a position....my former Merrill colleagues have said "don't do it". Any advice on what to negotiate for with the Jones recruiters, or a potential starting salary. I do not have a big enough book to leverage at this point....I was in Private banking and am a CFP.


Thanks!



That's the problem with being a cfp. Noone wants to buy what you're selling.

Dec 31, 2008 11:03 am

FBR,

I would sort of hesitate before you make the leap to Jones.  It can be very difficult to transition a book (especially a fee-based one) to Jones.  I have seen many successful AGE advisors come over, and even ML and other wire reps, but usually at earlier stages in their careers, or advisors that are primarily commission-based.  Not that Jones is bad, it's just that they have less flexibility in their model than many firms.  I would receommend you look at your book, then sit with someone experienced at Jones and determine EXACTLY what you can and CANNOT do.  You don't want to have any surprises when ACAT's start coming over.  For example, the new advisory service is very good, but you are limited by their fund choices (about 160 funds - very good funds, but that is your choice).  You cannot use discretion, and you can only hold funds/ETF's in the fee platform.  The FP software is from Sungard.  The CMS system is one of the better ones in the industry, and much of our software is very integrated now (portfolio, financial planning, CMS, order-entry, Quote Monitor, Morningstar Hypo, performance diagnostics, and e-mail are all integrated).
 
The biggest question is, how big is your book, and what's the asset makeup?
 
If you have a decent sized book, you may be able to hold out for an open office, or have them build one out right away.
Dec 31, 2008 12:46 pm

FBR,

 
The biggest question is what you want your business to be?  EDJ, where I've been for 10 years is a great firm for me.  Other people on this board will strongly disagree and have valid reasons.  We have our niche and do it well.  If your dream is to be a fee based financial planner, EDJ is not the best fit. 
Dec 31, 2008 6:00 pm

I know former Jones reps. They hated it there. Not bad producers either. Besides who the F wants to go knocking door to door like a vacuum cleaner salesman or a Jehovah W. Good way to get shot, considering this economic environment. I cant help but laugh my ass of thinking about some new Jones rep knocking on doors to get people to invest in this environment. Better bring an armed guard with you. Good grief!!!!!!

Dec 31, 2008 8:07 pm

I would probably try to stay a bit clear of Jones.  It just doesn't seem like there are many quality firms for people to choose from right now.  You can either work in a wirehouse that has been dragged through the mud to earn a salary or work for a firm that doesn't pay you anything when you need to put food on the table.  Perhaps you could hook up with an insurance company that also does investments like Axa.  Maybe you could get with a good indy insurance agent and you could help to expand his practice into investement planning and steal some assets from other troubled firms.  Selling insurance and annuities to regular people right now does kind of sound appealing.    Get a firm where you don't have to talk about your firm's troubles, golden parachutes, bailouts, acquisitions while also dealing with the market and trying to figure out an already tough business.

 
Sorry ML didn't work for you. 
Jan 1, 2009 9:30 pm

-I'm a CFP also, have my Masters, been at Jones over 15 years, manage around 160 million right now (down from over 200 last year), and enjoy the firm.  Other than private REIT's, Private Placements, leasing contracts, and options and commodities (can do ETF's though), you can do most anything at Jones anymore.  No firm is perfect, but 2008 proves that a conservative firm still has its place in the industry.

 
-FEEBASEDREP, What's interesting about many on this board is they are small producers (over 1/2 of LPL and RayJay producers GROSS less than 100k annually).  Many have washed out of a real firm and found themselves at a bank or working for minimum wage at an independent shop.  Even more sling EIA's or let everyone know UL's or whole life are the only investments a person needs.  So make sure you take the advice on this forum with a grain of salt.  PM if you have any good questions.
Jan 1, 2009 10:17 pm

Having worked at a bank, jones and now indy. I would agree with every post on here.. IT DEPENDS



If you run a feebased business, primarily in MFs or ETFs with no discretionary, you shouldn't have a problem moving accounts.



If you run a commission business and want to use stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ets and A share annuities, again no problem



If your book is made of 3rd party SMA accounts, discretionary trading, Private REITS, placements, options, commodities any Variable Annuities, then don't go to jones.



Jones is what it is, nothing terrible and they don't try to be the brokerage firm for everyone, but if you want a local broker, with Mutual Funds(including a feebased option now), bonds, and some stock mixed in then they can do that for you.

Jan 2, 2009 10:53 am
3rd ID:

I know former Jones reps. They hated it there. Not bad producers either. Besides who the F wants to go knocking door to door like a vacuum cleaner salesman or a Jehovah W. Good way to get shot, considering this economic environment. I cant help but laugh my ass of thinking about some new Jones rep knocking on doors to get people to invest in this environment. Better bring an armed guard with you. Good grief!!!!!!

 
This may be one of the best examples of someone who has never been in a Jones guy's shoes badmouthing Jones.  Of course the former Jones reps hated it there.  If they loved it they would be former reps now would they?  Have you ever been door to door like the vacuum cleaner sales guy?  If you haven't you don't have any idea how great some of those conversations can be.  Especially in this type of an environment when most advisors are burying their heads in the sand.  People WANT to talk with someone about their investments right now.  Often times it's the local Jones guy who puts his face in front of them who they get to talk to.  And they're not pissed off at the Jones guy at the door, they're pissed off at the ML, BAC, AGE, AIG, or WB guy who hasn't called them this year to explain anything. 
Jan 2, 2009 10:54 am

chief - we can do VAs.  Just thought you might like to know.  But you're dead on with the rest of it.