Despite a tough market in August, Raymond James (RJF) executives said Thursday that its two broker-dealers are set for a strong fiscal-year performance for the period ending Sept. 30. The executives discussed these and other developments, like a potential bid for Morgan Keegan, during the firm’s annual Women’s Symposium being held this week in St. Petersburg, Fla.
Revenue at RJFS is up an estimated 12% year over year, according to Dick Averitt, head of the independent channel, and could be roughly $1.17 billion for the year. Average yearly production per advisor in this part of the private-client group has risen roughly 15% to $360,000, Averitt said.
In the employee channel, assets have at a compound annual growth rate of about 16% in the past 10 years and stand at about $90 billion, according to Dennis Zank (left), who heads the division. Average fees and commissions per advisor are $538,000 with overall revenue for the year totaling an estimated $715 million.
“As a company, we have a target of hitting a 15% growth target,” said COO Chet Helck speaking at the conference. “One way we do this is by adding productive capacity and another way retention, which is a problem for our industry as you see some firms hemorrhaging people.” An alternative means for growth, he adds, is acquisitions.
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In an interview with AdvisorOne, Helck said the firm’s operations overlap with those of Morgan Keegan, in the fixed-income arena. “And we have to account for that,” he said, implying that Raymond James wouldn’t likely move to acquire the broker-dealer, which is now for sale.
Attrition rates at some other broker-dealers, Helck (left) says, can be as high as 15% to 20%. “Replacement is not happening, and they are shrinking.” This should help the firm continue to recruit advisors, he adds.
Overall, the firm’s recruiting momentum is looking good, after a brief slowdown, due to attractive retention bonuses, the Raymond James executives say. At the peak of the crisis, they stress, recruiting was “off the charts.”