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HighTower recruits a second $1B wirehouse team

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Two advisers have left Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley to form an independent practice with HighTower, a spokeswoman said.

The advisers previously oversaw $1 billion in client assets, per the spokeswoman. It's the second big recruiting win this year for HighTower, which said last month that it recruited another $1 billion team from Wells Fargo. That group joined HighTower in Jacksonville, Florida.

The biggest advisers to go it alone this year managed over $13 billion in client assets.
December 20

The firm's newest hires operate as Cognetic Capital Advisors in HighTower's New York office.

The team consists of CEO Joel Talish, who left Wells Fargo, and managing director John Buffa, who departed from Morgan Stanley.

The two advisers are industry veterans of about 20 years each, and both did stints at Smith Barney. Talish started at Smith Barney in 1998 and left for Wells Fargo in 2006, according to FINRA BrokerCheck. Buffa stayed with the firm through its merger with Morgan Stanley.

Spokeswomen for Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley declined to comment on the departure.

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