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As coronavirus spread, RBC snagged $350M Wells Fargo recruit

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As the coronavirus was spurring states to order residents to shelter in place and FA recruiting began grinding to a halt, RBC successfully extended its years-long recruiting streak a bit farther to hire a veteran wirehouse advisor.

On March 9, the regional BD picked up Nancy Anstoetter, an advisor of 32 years. Anstoetter previously managed $350 million in assets at Wells Fargo Advisors, her employer since 1999, according to FINRA BrokerCheck records.

RBC, which fields more than 2,000 financial brokers, has been growing its headcount by picking up wirehouse and other advisors such as Anstoetter. Last year, the firm snagged one of the biggest hires of 2019 when it hired a UBS team that managed about $7.5 billion. And RBC’s recruiting run continued into this year as it added more new hires such as a $1.8 billion from Merrill Lynch in February.

But recruiting moves are becoming rarer in light of the coronavirus pandemic, which has spurred states and cities to restrict travel and order non-essential businesses to close. Firms and recruiters have said that incoming new hires have postponed move dates because of the virus.

“Until things settle down a little, moving is just not a paramount concern and it won’t be until there is less uncertainty,” recruiter Mark Elzweig says.

Anstoetter joined RBC in Clive, Iowa, a suburb of Des Moines. The state is one of a handful that has not issued a shelter in place order. The Republican governor there has, however, ordered school closures and most retail establishments other than grocery stores and gas stations to close, according to the Associated Press.

More often than not, wirehouses were on the losing side of these moves.
December 30

While financial services, deemed essential businesses, have been largely exempt from such orders, nearly all wealth management firms have asked advisors to work remotely. Advisors at firms big and small have been relying on phone calls and video conferencing tools to stay in touch with clients.

RBC's branches remain open, but with significantly less staff than normal as advisors are working from home, according to a company spokesman.

The firm, meanwhile, has said it will not reduce its headcount.

In a letter to employees, CEO Dave McKay praised their efforts to help clients and customers when they needed it most. “That’s why our leadership team has committed there will be no job losses at RBC in 2020 as a result of COVID-19,” McKay wrote.

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