Lazard reining in wealth management unit

Move is part of cost cutting, but adviser job cuts remain a question

Nov 18, 2012 @ 12:01 am

By Andrew Osterland

Lazard Ltd. is folding its U.S. wealth management business into a larger unit as part of a cost-cutting initiative announced in the third quarter.

The decision comes just three years after the business was launched as a subsidiary.

“The wealth management business in the U.S. is becoming part of Lazard Asset Management,” Lazard spokeswoman Judi Mackey said.

Although the investment bank and advisory firm isn't closing the business, it is unclear if the move will result in job losses for financial advisers.

Lazard doesn't break out numbers for its U.S. wealth management business, but it is far smaller than the European business, which operates under the name Lazard Frères Gestion SAS.

Ms. Mackey provided no further details about the move.

Lazard is known primarily for its mergers-and- acquisitions advisory and investment banking operations. Still, the global asset management division had $160 billion in assets under management at the end of September.

Lazard started the U.S. private-wealth-management business in 2009, but it hasn't reported performance for the subsidiary separately from the asset management group.

It brought in Thaddeus Shelly, a former Bessemer Trust Co. NA executive, to lead the unit, but the firm has been quiet about recruiting, said Danny Sarch, president of recruiting firm Leitner Sarch Consultants Ltd.

“They have the wonderful name in investment banking, and everyone thought it would be great if they were in wealth management,” Mr. Sarch said. “But it seems they were just dabbling in the business rather than being committed to it.”

Lazard's senior leadership appears to have lost patience with the dabbling.

aosterland@investment news.com Twitter: @aoreport

0
Comments

What do you think?

View comments

Recommended for you

Sponsored financial news

Featured video

Events

How politics are moving markets

The financial services industry stands at the unique intersection of politics and market fluctuation. Clients are anxious and the right adviser can steady he waters. Scott Kubie of Carson Group explains how.

Video Spotlight

The Search for Income

Sponsored by PGIM Investments

Recommended Video

Path to growth

Latest news & opinion

How does your advisory firm stack up?

Comparing a firm's pay to the competition can point out vast flaws.

10 signs your client is cheating on you

Sure signs that clients may be on the way out the door.

Morgan Stanley sees slower fee-based asset flows on fiduciary rule delay

Flows to advisory accounts, while still higher than the start of 2016, dropped off more than 20% from Q2 and were the lowest in a year.

How adviser salaries stack up to other jobs

Median compensation hovers just under $100,000 on the low end and reaches nearly $300,000 for bosses.

Finra ranking brokers in effort to crack down on industry's bad apples

All 634.403 reps have been ranked based on factors such as prior regulatory disclosures, disciplinary actions and employment history.

X

Subscribe and Save 60%

Premium Access
Print + Digital

Learn more
Subscribe to Print