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Wells Fargo advisors with $1.44B jump to Stifel

Stifel is reaping benefits from Wells Fargo’s advisor attrition problems, picking up eight brokers who oversaw $1.44 billion at the wirehouse.

The St. Louis-based regional broker-dealer has been on a strong recruiting push this year. The firm’s headcount rose to 2,298 for the third quarter, a net increase of 31 from the prior quarter and 47 from the year-ago period.

“It was our best quarterly recruiting total in roughly 10 years, excluding acquisitions,” Stifel CEO Ronald Kruszewski said during a recent earnings call.

Meanwhile, Wells Fargo’s head count has fallen by about 1,000 over the past two years. The bank has been rocked by a phony accounts scandal and has paid more than $1 billion in fines and penalties to regulators. Advisors leaving Wells Fargo have mostly opted to join its smaller regional and independent competitors.

Wells Fargo bank shiny window Bloomberg News

Those departures now include advisors Kyle Adams, Dick Niemiec, and Lisa Reichert who joined Stifel last week. The Wooster, Ohio-based team oversaw $500 million in client assets at Wells Fargo Advisors.

Adams had been registered with Wells Fargo since 2009, according to FINRA BrokerCheck records. Niemiec, an advisor of 45 years, had been with the wirehouse since 1990. Riechert started her career at Wells Fargo in 2013.

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Former Wells Fargo advisors Rick Hueter and Todd Winter joined Stifel in a new Private Client Group office in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. The branch is Stifel’s 14th office in the state. The duo had $408 million in client assets at Wells Fargo.

Stifel Financial advisor

Hueter and Winter joined A.G. Edwards in 1995 and 2002, respectively, and stayed through its merger with Wells Fargo, according to BrokerCheck.

Advisor William Scott left Wells Fargo to join Stifel in Florham Park, New Jersey. He previously oversaw $264 million in client assets. Scott had been with Wells Fargo since 2006. He previously worked at UBS.

In upstate New York, James Gregg joined the regional BD’s Syracuse office. In making the move, he joins three other Wells Fargo advisors who joined the same office in June, according to Stifel. Gregg oversaw $161 million in client assets.

Gregg is also former A.G. Edwards broker, having started his career at the prominent regional brokerage in 1998, according to BrokerCheck records.

Frank Nightingale, who oversaw $111 million at Wells Fargo, joined Stifel’s Scottsdale, Arizona, branch. He’s an industry veteran of 34 years with past work experience at Wells Fargo, Prudential Securities, Piper Jaffray and PaineWebber among other firms.

A Wells Fargo spokeswoman declined to comment.

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