Inside views on the jobs market
Some in the financial industry apparently smell opportunity in the latest round of mergers and blood-letting among top banks.
Referring to the Wells Fargo takeover of Wachovia as the WWF and placing Bank of America CEO Ken Lewis atop a bucking Merrill Lynch bull are just a couple of the attention-getting devices financial sector recruiting firm RJ & Makay uses in its latest promotional You Tube video.
Branching out from a previous video aimed at Merrill Lynch brokers, the new “Billion Dollar Video” (the company claims assets from advisers brought to them via these viral recruiting tools represent billions of dollars) targets all financial advisers but specifically appeals to those currently at Merrill Lynch and Wachovia.
Those brokers are grappling with with the question of whether to accept a retention/transition package, move to another firm or go independent. RJ & Mackay is clearly hoping they'll opt to walk and chose the firm to advise them on where to go next.
The following financial services industry appointments were announced on November 18, linked where possible to personal profiles on LinkedIn. To inform us of other job changes, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
FARMERS GROUP, INC.
Paul Hopkins has been named chairman of the board of Farmers Group, Inc., a Los Angeles-based subsidiary of Zurich Financial Services Group. Hopkins is currently the chief executive officer of the firm and will be replaced by Bob Woudstra, currently the president and chief operating officer for Farmers Group, Inc.
“We’ve hardly felt the financial crisis.”
Now there’s a sentence you don’t expect to hear these days. It comes from a headhunter for a temp agency in Germany, where apparently the financial sector is like Teflon: although German banks foresee some of the job cuts afflicting its peers – RBS among the most recent — there have been relatively few layoffs so far.
In a refreshing twist to a dire employment situation, headhunters in Germany are now scrambling to fill a slew of temporary banking jobs. Problem is, jittery bankers don’t want to switch firms in the middle of a crisis.
After a seemingly endless run of job cuts this week, Chrysler’s plan to slash a whopping 25 percent of its white-collar jobs handily goes to show how quickly problems in the finance sector leak into the rest of the economy.
Beaten-down brokers are weighing the benefits of staying at Wall Street mammoths Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch in a time when even the big guys aren’t so safe anymore. Turns out, well-established firms are still attractive to many brokers even as some decide to break ties altogether to set up their own shop.
“Merrill advisors are looking at the prospect of working for Ken Lewis and Bank of America and fear they will find themselves in a cost-cutting mentality,” says Howard Diamond, CEO of Diamond Consultants, a New Jersey-based financial services recruiter.
MORGAN STANLEY INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT
The asset manager appointed Richard Ford as managing director and portfolio manager in its Global Fixed Income Team. Previously he was with PIMCO.