Following news that Merrill Lynch Wealth Management lost several advisor teams to rivals this week, the firm is pushing back with three advisor hires of its own from competing wirehouse firms.

The new hires oversaw about $337 million in client assets while at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and Wells Fargo.

Jonathan Brecht joins Merrill Lynch from Morgan Stanley in the firm's New York office at Rockefeller Center. He previously had $128.7 million in client assets under management. Brecht came to Morgan Stanley through Citigroup, which he joined in 1998, according to his public registration records with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Prior to that, he served at Merrill Lynch for 11 years.

Jeff Chanin also joins the firm from Morgan Stanley, where he oversaw $98.5 million in client assets and $971,700 in annual fees and commissions. He first joined Morgan Stanley in 2003, according to his public registration records. Chanin is based in Coral Springs, Fla.

David Francis joins Merrill Lynch in Mequon, Wis., from Wells Fargo, where he oversaw $109.7 million in client assets and $488,000 in annual production. Francis was with Wells Fargo for 10 years, following stints at Salomon Smith Barney and Lehman Brothers.

The hires come as Merrill Lynch has recently lost a two-advisor team to RBC Wealth Management, two teams to Dynasty Financial Partners and another pair of teams to HighTower.

But Merrill Lynch has been on a hiring tear of its own, having also hired three UBS advisors with $323.2 million in client assets under management, and another advisor duo who managed more than $1 billion at Wells Fargo's Abbot Downing business.

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