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Raymond James snatches $787M advisors from four rivals

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Raymond James recruited advisors from four rivals who collectively managed $787 million in client assets, according to the company.

The new hires — which came at the expense of Merrill Lynch, Wells Fargo Advisors, SunTrust and Snowden Lane Partners — are indicative of the firm’s tenacious recruiting strategies. During its last fiscal year, some 650 advisors toured Raymond James headquarters in St. Petersburg, Florida, to decide whether to uproot their careers and make the switch.

The company has approximately 7,800 independent and employee advisors and its latest hires joined three different divisions.

Raymond James & Associates, the firm’s employee broker-dealer, hired advisor Andy Lovell, who oversaw $177 million and joined the firm’s New Orleans office. Lovell, who has 22 years of industry experience, has worked at Merrill Lynch, UBS and J.C. Bradford, according to FINRA BrokerCheck records.

In Atlanta, Raymond James picked up Debbie Smith, who previously managed $200 million in client assets at SunTrust, according to her new employer. An advisor of 22 years, Smith also affiliated with Raymond James & Associates.

She pointed to the company’s women’s advisors network as “another powerful reason to make the move,” according to a press statement.

Advisors Bruce Hoffman, Michelle Orcutt and Matt Paul opened an independent practice with Raymond James in Corpus Christi, Texas. They were previously affiliated with Wells Fargo where they managed more than $240 million in client assets and generated $1.7 million in annual revenue, according to Raymond James.

“The freedom and flexibility that Raymond James offers were important factors for us and our decision to make the move,” Orcutt said in a statement.

Hoffman is a veteran in the industry with 28 years of professional experience, according to BrokerCheck. He began his career at Merrill Lynch in 1990.

Orcutt started her career at Foresters Financial in 2001, and moved to Wells Fargo predecessor firm A.G. Edwards in 2002.

Paul commenced his career at Dean Witter in 1989. He moved to A.G. Edwards two years later, according to BrokerCheck.

Alex. Brown, a division of Raymond James geared toward wealthy clients, added 34-year veteran advisor Joseph Hubbell to its New York branch. He joined from independent firm Snowden Lane Partners where he managed $170 million.

He cited the firm’s resources in capital markets, investment banking and public finance as reasons for switching employers.

Spokeswomen at Merrill Lynch, Wells Fargo and Snowden Lane did not respond to a request for comment on the departures while SunTrust declined to comment.

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