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$200M Wells Fargo team jumps to Steward Partners

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Steward Partners hired two advisors from Wells Fargo, marking the latest gains for the fast-growing independent firm affiliated with Raymond James.

Advisors Corrado Spezzacatena and James Galbraith III joined Steward Partners' office in Morristown, New Jersey.

Since its founding in 2013, Steward Partners has picked up a number of wirehouse advisors and added new offices in nine states. The Washington, D.C.-based firm continued its hiring spurt through this year. Just last month, Steward Partners hired two brothers, also from Wells Fargo, who managed $500 million in client assets. They work from the firm's newest office in Newtown, Connecticut.

Spezzacatena and Galbraith were drawn to Steward Partners and Raymond James for the platform and what they say is the greater flexibility offered by the independent business model.

“Moving firms can be a daunting task but we couldn’t be happier about this and what it means for our clients,” Spezzacatena said in a statement.

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Both Spezzacatena and Galbraith had been with Wells Fargo since it acquired A.G. Edwards, the regional brokerage firm where the duo previously worked. Spezzacatena started working at A.G. Edwards in 2002, according to FINRA BrokerCheck records.

Galbraith first registered with Lehman Brothers in 1992. He moved his practice to A.G. Edwards in 1996, according to BrokerCheck.

A Wells Fargo spokeswoman was unavailable to comment.

The advisor losses are the latest for Wells Fargo where head count has fallen steadily since a fake accounts scandal came to light nearly two years ago and resulted in heightened regulatory scrutiny and hefty monetary penalties.

The bank recently reported having 860 fewer advisors for the second quarter of 2018 than it had at the end of the third quarter of 2016 when Wells Fargo was first buffeted by scandals on its consumer banking side.

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