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Stifel strikes again, luring $1B wirehouse recruits

Stifel has recruited 11 financial advisors overseeing more than $1 billion in client assets, building on a string of recent hires at regional brokerage firms.

The St. Louis-based firm has been targeting wirehouse advisors in particular, some of whom have said they made the move because they disliked the corporate culture and bureaucracy at the larger firms. So far this month, Stifel has hired 21 advisors managing nearly $2.1 billion in assets, according to a company spokesman.

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John Pierce, head of recruiting at the company, highlighted that Stifel has enticed recruits from each of the wirehouses in recent weeks. The demise of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary rule has also improved the recruiting environment, he says.

“The diversity of our hires across firms, geography, and gender show that post-DoL, Stifel is a firm that allows the advisor to choose what is best for their clients,” Pierce said in a statement.

The firm’s newest advisors include Eric Conover, who joined Stifel in Quincy, Illinois. He oversaw $183 million in client assets while at Wells Fargo, according to his new employer.

Conover was a veteran Wells Fargo advisor and had been registered with the firm since 1998, according to FINRA BrokerCheck records.

Eric Conover Stifel advisor

Also joining from Wells Fargo is John Barry Jenkins, who previously oversaw $65 million in client assets. Jenkins, who is based in Memphis, Tennessee, is a 32-year industry veteran who joined Wells Fargo from Morgan Keegan in 2011, according to BrokerCheck.

Father-and-son team John A. and John P. Banks left Wells Fargo to join Stifel in Center Valley, Pennsylvania. They oversaw $65 million at Wells Fargo, where they had worked since 2006. The Banks team was previously affiliated with Morgan Stanley.

Stifel also picked up former UBS advisor Craig Whitten in Phoenix. Whitten oversaw $71 million while at UBS, according to Stifel. He had been registered with the wirehouse since 2001, per BrokerCheck.

He’s also rejoining his former UBS colleague Craig Johnson, who moved to Stifel’s Phoenix office about two weeks ago.

Finally, Stifel picked up a Morgan Stanley team that oversaw $644 million in client assets. The Bourbonnais, Illinois-based team is comprised of Zachary Birkey, Ronald Ouwenga, Jeff Schimmelpfennig, Myron Hendrix, Brian Thomas and Michael Bruner. They changed their registrations on Thursday, according to FINRA BrokerCheck records.

Spokeswomen for Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley declined to comment on the departures from those firms, and a UBS spokeswoman was not available for immediate comment.

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