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Morgan Stanley Delays Change to Comp Grid

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Morgan Stanley Chairman & CEO James Gorman (Photo: AP)

A day after Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman said employees’ jobs are secure for the year, its wealth management group told its 15,500 advisors that an important change to its compensation plans set to start April 1 is being postponed by six months. 

Earlier this week, Wells Fargo said it suspended a move to double the client asset level at which a yearly account fee of up to $300 was waived, citing “the current environment and to ensure we are able to best serve our clients.”

In Morgan Stanley’s case, Field Management Head Vince Lumia says the wealth unit knows its advisors “are facing enormous challenges personally and professionally, while at the same time taking great care of your clients in a very difficult environment.”

The change being pushed back to Oct. 1 involves the planned jump in the levels of yearly fees and commissions (or production) under $5 million used as thresholds in the incentive comp grid. 

The shift generally boosts the production thresholds below $5 million by some 10%. 

Changes to start May 1 include one tied to net acquired assets, that lets advisors earn up to 3 percentage points on the credit rate applied to revenue from clients with NAA of $5 million and up.

It also will use assets plus liabilities to determine if a household is subject to its small-household policy.


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