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McCann Bids Merrill Adieu

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Robert McCann is leaving his post as the head of Merrill Lynch’s wealth-management division now that its merger with Bank of America has been completed.

McCann, 50, is a 26-year Merrill veteran. He recently led the New York company’s 16,850-member brokerage force as vice chairman and president of global wealth management. But, according to several news reports, the merger meant that his responsibilities were being narrowed under the direction of Bank of America executives.

Overall, advisors were highly supportive of McCann’s leadership. However, some advisors felt overlooked by a recent retention-bonus plan that generally favored large producers.

McCann could be succeeded by a top deputy, Dan Sontag.

Unlike another top Merrill executive, Greg Fleming, McCann had not moved up a notch in the management structure after the merger with BofA. This and supposed tensions with Merrill chief John Thain — now in charge of global banking, securities and wealth management for BofA — appear to have contributed to his departure, according to various news sources.