Morgan Stanley has opened a new branch office in Miami to house 22 advisers overseeing $7 billion in client assets, the firm says.
The new office – Morgan's third in Miami – is geared towards serving wealthy clients from Latin America, the firm says. Most of the advisers are recent recruits from Credit Suisse, having joined Morgan under a recruiting arrangement that the wirehouse reached with Credit Suisse, which exited the U.S. wealth management market earlier this year.
The Swiss bank had signed a similar agreement with Wells Fargo, but many of the brokers covered under that agreement passed on the offer to join Wells, and opted instead for UBS. That led Credit Suisse to file raiding claims against UBS in FINRA arbitration. Meanwhile, disputes over withheld deferred compensation between Credit Suisse and its former brokers are pending.
A spokeswoman for Morgan says the firm picked up "virtually all" of the 38 advisers covered under its agreement with Credit Suisse. The advisers are split between Morgan's New York office and the new branch in Miami.
The new office is overseen by Branch Manager Cristian Gonzalez Lami, an industry veteran of 20 years who joined Morgan from Credit Suisse, according to the wirehouse. He reports to Kevin McCarty, complex manager.
James Jesse, head of International Wealth Management at Morgan Stanley, said in a statement that serving Latin America's wealthy elite "presents a significant opportunity for growth."
"We look forward to further expansion in this office as well as the introduction of significant new resources to meet the needs of our non-resident clients," he said.
Morgan's international unit has over 400 advisers operating from more than a dozen offices, according to the firm. The advisers serve more than 140,000 families from over 60 countries.
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