Morgan Stanley sued for racial bias

Suit from former wealth manager comes a decade after the bank's settlement of class-action discrimination lawsuit

Feb 1, 2018 @ 1:56 pm

By Bloomberg News

A former Morgan Stanley wealth manager sued the bank, saying he was terminated following a "campaign of harassment," even after the settlement a decade ago of a class-action discrimination lawsuit.

The suit was filed in federal court in New York by John Lockette, an African-American man from New Jersey who worked at Morgan Stanley as an assistant vice president in its wealth management division from 2013 until he was fired in August 2016. Mr. Lockette says the reforms obtained by the settlements of class-action suits have "utterly failed" and that the company's discriminatory policies and practices continue.

"Morgan Stanley has no genuine intent to reform, to provide equal opportunities to African-Americans, or to abide by the spirit of its agreement" to settle the racial discrimination claims, Mr. Lockette said in his suit.

"Morgan Stanley denies the allegations in the complaint. The firm is strongly committed to nondiscrimination, and looks forward to addressing this former employee's claims on the merits," spokeswoman Christine Jockle said.

In 2007, the bank agreed to pay $16 million to settle claims that branch managers steered new and existing accounts to white male brokers, depriving black and Latino financial advisers in its global wealth management group of the opportunity to earn commissions and promotions.

(More: Morgan Stanley reports a loss of advisers after exiting the protocol for broker recruiting)

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