Merrill Lynch grabs UBS team, UBS grabs back

Jul 24, 2011 @ 12:01 am

By Andrew Osterland

A four-man team of advisers from UBS Financial Services Inc. who manage $277 million in assets with trailing-12-month production of $2.5 million has joined the Palm Beach, Fla., complex of Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

John Burns, John Forgatch, Peter Krones and William Liebowitz will report to Merrill Lynch managing director James Chahine.

Mr. Burns was hired by UBS at the end of 2005 while Mr. Forgatch joined UBS for the second time last year. Mr. Krones and Mr. Liebowitz joined in 2007.

UBS last week returned the favor, hiring Merrill Lynch broker James H. Maloney to work in its Palm Beach office. According to the firm, he managed $329 million in client assets and had trailing-12-month production of $1.9 million.

Mr. Mahoney is one of eight new hires announced by UBS last week. Together, they manage more than $1 billion and produce annual revenue of $9.25 million.

The moves register as some of the biggest in the past 60 days, according to the InvestmentNews Advisers on the Move database.

Adviser moves from wirehouses have been few and far between this year because a large percentage of wirehouse advisers remain under retention packages signed two to three years ago, according to executive recruiter Mindy Diamond.

Although the summer is often slow, “it's a little quieter than normal,” said Ms. Diamond, who is president of Diamond Consultants LLC.

As the packages sunset, advisers will be more interested in exploring options, she said.

“We have a robust pipeline of deals where advisers look likely to move,” Ms. Diamond said. “I suspect that things will pick up after the summer.”

Email Andrew Osterland at aosterland@investmentnews.com

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