The coronavirus and its associated fallout have prompted one large broker-dealer to put its in-person recruiting efforts and the related movement of some new advisors on hold.
“We discontinued in-person advisor recruiting meetings and deferred numerous advisor transitions to Raymond James due to COVID-19,” said Chairman & CEO Paul Reilly, in a statement.
The news comes about 10 days after the firm decided to limit visits to the home office and branches “by non-associates for the health and safety of associates, advisors and clients.”
It also ended “nonessential” travel until further notice and canceled (or postponed) events through at least April 30, including its yearly independent advisor conference, Elevate, which had been set for April 20-23 in Orlando.
The firm, which has about 8,100 independent and employee advisors, says total client assets under administration was $855 billion as of Feb. 29.
That’s down 5% from Jan. 31, but up 9% from February 2019. The firm says the month-to-month drop was mainly due to “the decline in equity markets, which has accelerated thus far in March.”
In other negative news, Reilly said: “We are also experiencing disruption in our investment banking business … [and] while trading volumes in fixed income are elevated in March, dislocation in the fixed income markets has negatively impacted principal transaction revenues.”