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UBS ratchets up pursuit of rich clients with staff promotions

UBS promoted 96 employees to the level of managing director in the Americas as it seeks to gain more rich clients and expand in the region.

The Swiss bank elevated 60 financial advisors and 36 Americas staff, according to Tom Naratil, co-president of UBS Global Wealth Management and president of UBS in the Americas, who posted lists of the promoted employees on LinkedIn.

“You want on the one hand to keep getting a relatively decent yield from your investments, but also protect your portfolio against short-term bouts of volatility," said Maximilian Kunkel, chief investment officer for Germany at UBS Wealth Management.
A pedestrian shelters under an umbrella while passing a UBS Group AG bank branch in Zurich. Photographer: Stefan Wermuth/Bloomberg

UBS plans to expand by targeting billionaires, managing the complex fortunes of large families and boosting lending. The bank is the world’s biggest wealth manager, with $2.26 trillion of assets under management, but its American wealth operations are smaller than rivals Bank of America and Morgan Stanley. The division has an “extremely ambitious” plan to boost pretax profits by 10% to 15% over the next three years, Naratil said in a December interview.

“We continue to strategically invest in the Americas as a key area of growth,” Naratil said in a statement. “Our advisers are the most productive in the industry and these promotions are in recognition of their accomplishments.”