Reps Hear Outpouring of Support

Brokers this morning are finding clients more concerned about the reps’ well-being than their money or the market. At today’s opening, a Merrill Lynch rep at a branch in midtown Manhattan was calling clients and reassuring them their investments are safe. Even with the averages sharply down, that’s not what they want to hear, according to the rep. “People are just happy to hear your voice. I start

Brokers this morning are finding clients more concerned about the reps’ well-being than their money or the market.

At today’s opening, a Merrill Lynch rep at a branch in midtown Manhattan was calling clients and reassuring them their investments are safe.

Even with the averages sharply down, that’s not what they want to hear, according to the rep. “People are just happy to hear your voice. I start talking about the portfolio and they say, ‘Whoa, whoa ... we just wanted to make sure you’re OK.’ … I’ve been getting calls from all around the world, literally, from clients, friends and people I haven’t spoken to in a long time.”

A Salomon Smith Barney broker in Connecticut says many clients checked in with him over the weekend, expressing support. And a spirit of patriotism infected their business decisions: He had 23 buy orders ready to go this morning.

An Edward Jones rep in Iowa says of his 2,500 clients, "only one client felt he had to do something [convert to cash]. I think most of our clients are doing what they should do--hanging tough."

He says his clients "are taking it with sadness, but not doing anything irrational." He also says the biggest impact felt at Jones is that their traders in St. Louis had a very close relationship with Cantor Fitzgerald. "We have a broken heart," the rep says.

Editor's note: For any comments regarding this article, or to suggest a story idea for RR Online or Registered Representative magazine, contact Editor in Chief Dan Jamieson at [email protected], Online Editor Rick Weinberg at [email protected], Online Managing Editor Cheryl Cooper at [email protected] or Senior Editor Michael Hayes at [email protected]

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