Raymond James Grabs Two Merrill Teams in Southeast

Nashville recruits follow on heels of RJ hire of Merrill team in Louisville

Raymond James (RJF) said Friday that it has recruited three Merrill Lynch (BAC) advisors to its independent broker-dealer near Nashville. The news comes three days after it announced the hiring of a former-Merrill team in Louisville that chose to join its employee broker-dealer.

The ex-Merrill team going independent comes to Raymond James with about $860,000 in combined yearly fees and commissions and $140 million in assets, while the employee advisors generated some $2.7 million in annual production and managed about $853 million in assets.

Scott Curtis, RJFSThe three advisors moving to independence are Lee C. Vaughan, John F. Connelly and James L. Maddux, said Scott Curtis (left), president of Raymond James Financial Services, the firm’s independent broker-dealer.

“Independence provides a permanent solution to the frequent challenges and frustrations facing advisors at many of the larger firms,” said Curtis in a statement. “Attracting Lee, John and Jim to Raymond James is proof that our advisor-centric culture and broad platform continue to appeal to some of the very best advisors in the industry.”

Vaughan pointed to several factors that were important in making the decision to join Raymond James. “Among them was the firm’s strength and stability and its advisor-focused culture. The appeal of being independent while serving our clients’ best interests was very compelling," he said in a statement.

Tash Elwyn, Private Client Group president of Raymond James & AssociatesComing over to Raymond James Associates, the firm's employee channel, are Harry Wall, Marc Young, Timothy A. Campisano and Brent A. Carlton, who  recently formed Louisville Capital Advisors of Raymond James, says Tash Elwyn (right), Private Client Group president of Raymond James & Associates.

“I’m thrilled to welcome such an accomplished team to Raymond James,” said Elwyn, in a statement. “The members of Louisville Capital Advisors are highly regarded individuals who collectively bring over 110 years of industry experience and knowledge to our firm. We could not ask for a stronger team to join us in the Louisville area.”

Added Tom Hirsch, Louisville complex manager and a former Merrill Lynch branch manager: “It is an honor and a privilege to again have the opportunity to work with each member of this team. They are talented professionals who have distinguished themselves throughout their careers as honest, ethical, hard-working individuals who put their clients' interests first. To a person, they are a pleasure to be around."

Raymond James said Tuesday the Department of Justice had allowed it to wrap up one regulatory process ahead of schedule in connection with its purchase of Morgan Keegan.

On Wednesday, the firm said it had priced an offering of 6.90% senior notes due in 2042 and valued at $350 million at 100% of the principal amount. Raymond James also granted the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional $52.5 million in aggregate principal amount of notes to cover overallotments, if any.

The net proceeds of the offering are expected to be used for help pay for the Morgan Keegan acquisition, which is expected to close in April 2012. The remaining portion of the purchase price will be funded using cash on hand, the net proceeds from the recently completed public offering of nearly 11.1 million shares of common stock and the net proceeds from one or more anticipated public offerings of senior-debt securities and, only if needed, borrowings under a bridge facility.

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