Adviser recruiting stays cold while breakaway RIAs heat up

Advisory industry recruiting activity has still only partially rebounded from its pandemic standstill, according to an analysis of the latest Advisers on the Move data.

Total moves of experienced advisers were up 10% year over year through the first three quarters of 2021, according to the data. But the roughly 12,600 moves tracked through September remain 10% below their pre-pandemic level.

That includes recruitment of advisers already working in the industry and excludes transitions between related firms or those arising from a merger or acquisition.

The logistics of networking and actually transitioning offices were complicated by social distancing, and the pace of industry recruiting activity appears to be following the only partial return of live events and in-person work. According to a midyear survey by InvestmentNews Research, 41% of offices with multiple employees planned to continue at least partially remote operations indefinitely.

Still, the prevailing trend of advisers going independent has only gathered steam.

The RIA channel gained 1,274 advisers from other channels on net through September, up 43% year over year and 31% over 2019. Net gains for independent broker-dealers were up 15% year over year but lagged their pre-Covid level.

Wirehouses, which have backed away from the expensive task of recruiting from competitors in recent years, lost 1,749 advisers on net, more than any other comparable period since the 2009 financial crisis.

In the third quarter, LPL Financial, Fidelity Brokerage Services and PNC Investments led in gains, each bringing on more than 100 advisers on net.

Q3 Top Net Gains

  Advisers Advisers Gained Q3 GAINED YTD
LPL Financial 277 813
Fidelity Brokerage Services 149 391
PNC Investments 120 125
Raymond James & Associates Inc. 45 171
Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. 45 44
Morgan Stanley 43 107
Ameriprise Financial Services 39 76
Stifel Nicolaus & Co. Inc. 31 46
Fisher Investments 25 89
Confluence Financial Partners 21 21

Q3 Top Net Losses

  Advisers Lost Q3 Advisers Lost YTD
Merrill Lynch Pierce Fenner & Smith Inc. 333 895
Wells Fargo Clearing Services 244 898
BBVA Securities Inc. 126 156
Edward Jones 86 328
PNC Managed Account Solutions Inc. 41 50
Equitable Advisors 40 175
MML Investors Services 37 104
NYLIFE Securities 32 92
Avantax Investment Services Inc. 32 141
UBS Financial Services Inc. 30 94

Q3 Channel Net Changes

  Advisers Gained Q3 Advisers Gained YTD
RIA 392 1,274
Independent Broker-Dealer 291 1,056
Discounter 189 189
Regional Broker-Dealer 68 219
Institutional 21 94
Bank -187 -359
Insurance Broker-Dealer -203 -700
Wirehouse -564 -1,749

For more information on IN’s research offerings, contact [email protected]

The post Adviser recruiting stays cold while breakaway RIAs heat up appeared first on InvestmentNews.

Andrew is half-human, half-gamer. He’s also a science fiction author writing for BleeBot.

Andrew Vincent
Andrew is half-human, half-gamer. He's also a science fiction author writing for BleeBot.
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