Merrill Lynch is pursuing me?

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Dec 2, 2008 10:59 am

Though I've been with Morgan Stanley my first 2 yrs in the biz back in 2000, and had my run with bank brokerage programs +managing a bank program, they are pursuing me. Currently, I'm with a discount brokerage studying for my 24 (main reason why I'm here). The recruiter told me their salary is anywhere from 40-80 + commissions, bonuses & bene's day 1. I would be in a Practice Management Program for 3 years.

 
To be realistic in going independent at some point in my career, would this be the best move for me? I can no longer stay at my current firm, though financial obligations (child support, rent, car payment, etc..) have me tied down here
Dec 2, 2008 6:25 pm

Get a good govt job with a pension. If your young enough join a law enforcement agency ie, state police, fbi, secret svc, etc. Good benefits, pensions, salary not bad, 6 figures after 5 years easy. Good job security. This is what I would do if I had to do it over again. Unfortunately at 41, I'm now too old to join the SP or FBI, etc., although I am in outstanding physical condition.  This business we are in has already seen its best days. God only knows how the industry is going to survive.

Dec 2, 2008 8:38 pm

If you want to go independant, don't go to MER/BofA- you should go to a regional or something.  Once MER/BofA gets their hooks in you, they will punish you for leaving.

Dec 2, 2008 8:46 pm
3rd ID:

Get a good govt job with a pension. If your young enough join a law enforcement agency ie, state police, fbi, secret svc, etc. Good benefits, pensions, salary not bad, 6 figures after 5 years easy. Good job security. This is what I would do if I had to do it over again. Unfortunately at 41, I'm now too old to join the SP or FBI, etc., although I am in outstanding physical condition.  This business we are in has already seen its best days. God only knows how the industry is going to survive.



Have you always been such a ray of sunshine?

Myself, I take the opposite view.  Now is a GREAT time to be in the business because there is lots of money in motion and plenty of folks who have concerns about the advice they've received.

If you've been talking to a prospect for a little while and they've been sitting on the fence, don't you think you stand a better chance of landing the account when their AGWachFargo broker calls them from BankMerrill to say they've moved, and they want them to come along?

Dec 2, 2008 9:54 pm

Sorry, dont mean to be glum, but thats the way I see it at the moment. Yes, money in motion, no doubt. Less of it but in motion. As for the folks seeking opinions on the advise they have been given, those include yours and my clients. Lets face it,we have moderate risk managed accts down 35 to 45% in some cases! No matter how well it was planned and set in motion, its not working right now and we will lose some of these good people (clients). I guess if we can maintain the levels we have here for the next year or 2 it will be ok, but real growth in the book of biz over the next year or 2 will be a difficult task. 

Dec 2, 2008 10:00 pm
3rd ID:

Get a good govt job with a pension. If your young enough join a law enforcement agency ie, state police, fbi, secret svc, etc. Good benefits, pensions, salary not bad, 6 figures after 5 years easy. Good job security. This is what I would do if I had to do it over again. Unfortunately at 41, I'm now too old to join the SP or FBI, etc., although I am in outstanding physical condition.  This business we are in has already seen its best days. God only knows how the industry is going to survive.

 
What kind of business do you do?  There are some people making good, if not great, money.
 
If you are solely doing individual stocks on a pure commission basis, I would understand.  So what is your book made up of?
Dec 2, 2008 11:02 pm

Dont get me wrong, I had my best year yet in 08. Did drop off a bit in Sept, but still by far best year. I do as much managed as I can probably 35% of revs at this point. I want that to increase that significantly, but its been tougher to sell here. So variables with he living benefits and in some cases an enhanced DB. Also decent amount of fixed. Much of it in the form of 1035's out of a carrier thats been in the "news" About 40% total on annuities this year. Too much for my liking but its generating biz and preserving the clients income ability (yes I do worry about insurance co's going under) but we do have a few levels of protection even if that were to occur. The balance is tradt'l funds, lending, some trust biz fees and other misc. I dont pick stocks with the exception of some gold related equities/etf's as you dont get much if any exposure there in the managed or annuities. Those are generally done in wrap accts. I do some for straight commission but i dont look at that as real revenue. More like a service for the client. As good as its been, the uncertainty and potential drop in income is a big concern. Its been tough to do any equity related biz in the last couple of months. Managed are a hard sell here at the moment. I'm  looking to focus on life ins starting now. I here there is significant 1035 opps with that. Very beneficial for client and very good comp. Just have to find the opps.