Merrill Retention

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wolverine1945's picture
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What are the odds that BAC will not pay it since they just got 20 Billion from TARP

B24's picture
B24
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We'll see when the word finally gets out about them using tax dollars to pay billions in retention bonuses, while the rest of the world gets laid off.

kappa1997's picture
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I think its already been paid. I would imagine it was worth a few hundred million. What if BAC goes under and those brokers get a check to move in addition to their checks to stay at BAC
Wow it would be nice

leftml's picture
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Joined: 2008-11-13

Talked to a co worker in my old office . A guy who's on ACTM said the retention might be renegotiated.

Phan2om's picture
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Joined: 2008-10-25

Retention has not been paid- supposedly on or before the 23rd....beginning to wonder what is going to happen.  Funny that our deal was collapsing in December while management of the firm was telling us how great things were going.
 
There is no credibility left at ML.  I think this firm is going to fail.  Just my opinion.

bondo's picture
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Phan2om wrote:There is no credibility left at ML
 
Heard that same comment from multiple, decades long FAs the last few days.

kappa1997's picture
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FA's at ML must be upset by this. I know they were expecting to be paid prior to the new year and supposedly are paying interest on the loan but have not been paid the actual bonous?  

I could see the package being renegotiated, actually BAC should just relinquish ML and let what happens happen. I think the firm makes it, however they lost all their top people so i suppose thats not possible at this point......

Hank Moody's picture
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I've never met a ML broker that I liked and I hope they get stiffed, just like they deserve. 

eggward's picture
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Hank, that's pretty cold.  I'm not a fan of ML, but I hope the people at the company come out of this ok one way or another.  Its a very tough spot to be in and I don't envy them.  Plus, bad news for any one company in this industry reflects on us all, at least in the eyes of many of our clients.

mnbondguy's picture
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The brokers at all these wirehouses have gotten screwed by stuff completely unrelated to their business.  I hope it works out for all involved, no matter which firms they are with. 

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B24
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kappa1997 wrote: I think its already been paid. I would imagine it was worth a few hundred million. What if BAC goes under and those brokers get a check to move in addition to their checks to stay at BAC
Wow it would be nice

I bet it's more than that. Let's say 5,000 FA's got retention at an average of $100,000 each. That's, hmmmm, $500mm. I bet the number is well more than double that when all is said and done. After all, didn't $1mm producers get like 100% of t-12? How many 1mm producers do you think they have?   That's a lot of coin for taxpayers to cough up when half the country is getting laid off (or when 30,000 BAC/ML employees are being laid off). Hell, if you take their"average" producer at $750K T-12, and give them 25%, that's over $900mm.

Merrill said about 6,200 reps were eligible for retention, and about 95% signed their agreement.

"Those reps producing over $1.75 million will get 75 percent in upfront cash, taxable over 7 years, and another 25 percent in deferred bonus over three years. For reps producing $1 million to $1.75 million, the package includes 75 percent in cash upfront, and another 25 percent based on growth in production over a three-year period.

For lower-producing Merrill advisors, the offers range from a total of 75 percent of trailing 12, to 20 percent of future growth. Advisors producing $750,000 to just under $1 million will get 50 percent upfront cash over 7 years and 25 percent on growth in production over three years; those producing $500,000 to $750,000 will get 25 percent cash over 7 years and 25 percent on growth. For advisors producing $250,000 to $499,000, the deal includes just 20 percent on production growth in deferred cash over three years. (On average, Merrill reports that its advisors produce $767,000 in revenue a year.)"

fritz's picture
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There is an article out on reuters saying retention may be delayed or renegotiated due to last weeks news.  The article says retention was reported to be 3.8 Billion.

SouthernBroker's picture
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mnbondguy wrote: The brokers at all these wirehouses have gotten screwed by stuff completely unrelated to their business.  I hope it works out for all involved, no matter which firms they are with. 

I'm glad to see someone has a heart. I'm pretty sick of the tone of this board. There are some real jerks around here. Between them and the "chicken littles" I feel bad for a lot of your families.

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fritz wrote:There is an article out on reuters saying retention may be delayed or renegotiated due to last weeks news.  The article says retention was reported to be 3.8 Billion.Can you post a link?

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SouthernBroker wrote: mnbondguy wrote: The brokers at all these wirehouses have gotten screwed by stuff completely unrelated to their business.  I hope it works out for all involved, no matter which firms they are with. 

I'm glad to see someone has a heart. I'm pretty sick of the tone of this board. There are some real jerks around here. Between them and the "chicken littles" I feel bad for a lot of your families.

It's a simple solution if you don't like the tone. Don't read it or better yet, leave. Many of us are rainmakers for our firms. Without us there would be NO revenue. Considering that competitive firms are coveting us and offering deals, maybe our existing firms should pay attention.

SouthernBroker's picture
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FYI, I do just fine myself. I have every offer you can have. I just can't stand the apparent joy that some of you clowns get from other's hardships.

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SouthernBroker wrote: FYI, I do just fine myself. I have every offer you can have. I just can't stand the apparent joy that some of you clowns get from other's hardships.

Oh there are plenty of clowns here getting joy from the hardships of others. Not me, but take a look at the numerous Wachovia threads and you'll see about 5 ex age guys that are filled with hatred and can't stand the thought of us getting retention. Human nature I guess. All of them are pikers, shocker.

Sellout21's picture
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I'm sure "Rainmakers" like Ferris all have enough time to have 608 posts to this forum.

Bud  Fox's picture
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What I am wondering is how can anyone here be having hardships?  It seems as if everyone here is a million+ dollar producer.  I think I am the only one in this prison that is guilty at < 1/2 million.  Everybody posts there hardship on one thread and then talks about being in the million dollar club in another thread.   Sorry, no sale here...

nestegg's picture
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Bud Fox wrote:What I am wondering is how can anyone here be having hardships?  It seems as if everyone here is a million+ dollar producer.  I think I am the only one in this prison that is guilty at < 1/2 million.  Everybody posts there hardship on one thread and then talks about being in the million dollar club in another thread.   Sorry, no sale here...I am with ya Bud!

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Sellout21 wrote: I'm sure "Rainmakers" like Ferris all have enough time to have 608 posts to this forum.

I did 800 gross last year. I also worked an average of 30 hours per week. How much of a rainmaker are YOU?

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Ferris:  That's great you did $800, but it's the fact that you call yourself a "rainmaker" that I think is humorous.  $780k is the average at ML, and although many of the thundering herd have enormous egos, very few would call themselves a rainmaker.  

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I think that anyone over 500K is a rainmaker. I notice that you didn't answer the question. Most will never do that in their career and just because it is average at ML doesn't mean other firms don't covet us. In fact, ML offered me 120% of my T12 to take my business there. Laugh all you want, but I'm the one laughing.

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Ferris:  For the record, I did $607k at LOS 6.  Not shabby, but a long way to go.  There are people who do $500k+ just by inheriting accounts from departing FA's or inheriting their daddy's book.  They are hardly rainmakers.  It's also a lot easier to do more production in different areas simply b/c of demographics and selling certain products.  I know $1M+ producers working at local banks simply selling "B" share annuities and taking 7.5% upfront.  Everything's relative, but I don't use the word "rainmaker" so liberally. 

fritz's picture
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Ferris Bueller wrote:I think that anyone over 500K is a rainmaker. I notice that you didn't answer the question. Most will never do that in their career and just because it is average at ML doesn't mean other firms don't covet us. In fact, ML offered me 120% of my T12 to take my business there. Laugh all you want, but I'm the one laughing.
 
Man I read some of the stuff one here and I start cracking up..but this has to be the tops. "Rainmaker" LOL!!  I am not sure any broker is a rainmaker when firms pay analysts 7 figures to write b.s stock reports..Abby Cohen at GS makes 7 million a year and she got demoted for being wrong so often..She is basically being paid her contract just to stay quiet. A firm makes more on a random overnight block trade than what a broker brings in for them in a year..Sure most guys get that they are a tiny speck of dirt in the big picture for these places, but FB your Rainmaker line is classic, I have sent it to over 100 guys and everyone is laughing.

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Well unless you inherited a book and based on your LOS I would consider you a rainmaker. My LOS is 8.6 years and I did the very same production as you at LOS 6.

Rainmaker is someone that makes things happen and produces in any environment or firm. I could sell toasters and still be a success.

Sellout21's picture
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No offense Ferris, but it's this type of arrogance that played a huge role in the demise of the financial markets.  After everything that has happened there is zero accountability and absolutely no humility.
Fritz:  It's a pretty poor comparison b/w a financial advisor and Abby Cohen, or anyone at GS for that matter.  GS has more intellectual capital than any other firm on Wall Street.  I think Abby is awful, but it's very difficult for analysts to make predictions when companies are not fully disclosing their books, and only the top 1-3% of analysts are making 7 digit salaries.  Meredith Whitney at Oppenheimer and David Rosenberg at ML have been two of the best over the last 18 months.

fritz's picture
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Sellout21 wrote:
No offense Ferris, but it's this type of arrogance that played a huge role in the demise of the financial markets.  After everything that has happened there is zero accountability and absolutely no humility.
Fritz:  It's a pretty poor comparison b/w a financial advisor and Abby Cohen, or anyone at GS for that matter.  GS has more intellectual capital than any other firm on Wall Street.  I think Abby is awful, but it's very difficult for analysts to make predictions when companies are not fully disclosing their books, and only the top 1-3% of analysts are making 7 digit salaries.  Meredith Whitney at Oppenheimer and David Rosenberg at ML have been two of the best over the last 18 months.
 
No offense taken, but a broker doing 800K calling himself a rainmaker is a joke.  My branch has settled two trading disputes this year for almost double that.  We also paid a guy 200% of his T-12 16 months ago $2.3 million up front and the guy has not cracked 10K one month since he has been at our place.  My point is in the scale of this biz and the way firms blow money, its hard for one broker to be a "rainmaker."

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Sellout21 - Arrogance? I conservatively manage my client money. I didn't create financial instruments that were crap and then get them AAA rated NOR did I sell them to my clients. My book consists of treasury bonds, muni bonds, and conservative stocks/mutual funds. My top clients were all UP for 2008.

Fritz - I doubt you know 10 guys, let alone 100 and those 10 are the ones you happen to know at the local gay bar. If our firms don't need guys producing over 500K and can live off a random overnight block trade then maybe they should heed your advice and just fire all of us. You have expressed some dumb shit here before, but that takes the cake. That plus actively HOPING that no WS/AGE brokers get retention make you a jerkoff. Where's Put Trader, he actually made more sense than you.

duster10's picture
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I find it hard to believe that anybody's TOP clients were up in 2008, unless they brought in a lot of cash at some point during the year, and you consider a higher balance in the brokerage account on 12.31.08 UP. Not trying to ignite a fight, just voicing an opinion. For what it is worth, in the Dictionary we use on this site, I am a Rainmaker.

mnbondguy's picture
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the prosecution rests...

duster10's picture
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Fritz; are you telling us that a guy who had a T-12 doing 1.15mm did less that 120K last year (2.3 million =200% Upfront)?? That is staggering to hear!! How is that humanly possible. If that is true, I am not sure if the guy that got brought over is an idiot or a genius.

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duster10 wrote: I find it hard to believe that anybody's TOP clients were up in 2008, unless they brought in a lot of cash at some point during the year, and you consider a higher balance in the brokerage account on 12.31.08 UP. Not trying to ignite a fight, just voicing an opinion. For what it is worth, in the Dictionary we use on this site, I am a Rainmaker.

My top clients were in 100% treasuries right after the MARS/ARPS world blew up in Feb. The failing auctions were a huge tipoff.

Glad to hear that you are a rainmaker, sorry you don't feel that it applies beyond the dictionary of this site and what seems to be the sole opinion of me. I also feel that Analysts are not rainmakers, but expenses. And as wrong as most of them have been lately, very expensive.

Sellout21's picture
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No one is irreplaceable in this business. 
On another note:  Why all the ML bashing?  Say what you want about the firm, all firms and the vast majority of advisors all use ML as the example.  Whether it's retention bonuses, comp plans, # of assets, # of brokers, etc..., people always look at ML for precedent.  I'm by no means saying they do everything right, but you can't deny they usually set the standard when it comes to retail brokerage.

duster10's picture
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Wow....gutsy call if that is the case. Well done! I was in the same boat up until the end of May, then I got about 50% back in the market. Needless to say, my Top Clients were not up in 2008.

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duster10 wrote: Wow....gutsy call if that is the case. Well done! I was in the same boat up until the end of May, then I got about 50% back in the market. Needless to say, my Top Clients were not up in 2008.

More fear than anything. Most of them had MARS that we were able to get out of so it scared the crap out of us and we moved to treasuries.

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Why all the Ml bashing?? Probably for a couple reasons. Most ML guys I have met are rather egotistical, and border line elitist. Another reason is that a lot of people in this world like to see other fail. One last reason is that I would wager that the ML/WS ratio for this message board is around 1:5.

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Sellout21 wrote: No one is irreplaceable in this business. 
On another note:  Why all the ML bashing?  Say what you want about the firm, all firms and the vast majority of advisors all use ML as the example.  Whether it's retention bonuses, comp plans, # of assets, # of brokers, etc..., people always look at ML for precedent.  I'm by no means saying they do everything right, but you can't deny they usually set the standard when it comes to retail brokerage.

I agree, ML has always been the one firm I would go work for if I left. That said, ML is no longer running ML and now that the 2nd round of TARP money is being released to them + the press getting wind of the retention I can see some bad things happening.

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Congrats to you all on being rainmakers!!! LOLOn another more serious note...Ferris you bring up a good point that i am surprised has not been brought up front to the general public yet. With Citi and BAC getting all this money and guarantees from Uncle Sam, it is only a matter of time before some newshound gets a hold of the retention announcements and runs with it. And that is going to cause all kinds of outrage. Should be interesting.My last comment is...how th freak does Ken Lewis have a job? He makes Vikram, Chuck Prince, et al, look like geniuses.ML is the one place i wouldnt go right now. That situation is scary.

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duster10 wrote:Fritz; are you telling us that a guy who had a T-12 doing 1.15mm did less that 120K last year (2.3 million =200% Upfront)?? That is staggering to hear!! How is that humanly possible. If that is true, I am not sure if the guy that got brought over is an idiot or a genius.
 
"idiot or genius"  That's funny, the topic has come on several occasions at the branch.  Think everyone to a man in the office says genius!!  Back in 2000 (top of the market)was at a different firm and about 8 or 9 guys came over with T-12 of 7 figures and NONE of them ever did 300 again before their 5 year contract was up.  From my limited sample, maybe 25 guys I dont think 20 of the guys even came close to a breakeven deal for the new firm, it makes me wonder how firms continue to pay like they do, maybe it works out more often at other places??

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I guess I would have to wonder what it would be like to go to work every day, and you rboss thinks you basically stole from him.  How could you gather up the stones to even show up everyday (that is a rhetorical question, I know he has 2.3 million reasons).  In all seriousness, what it is it like for him at work??

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Fritz,
 
I echo Duster's question, "how can that be possible?"
 
Did they do nothing once moved? Were they at the end of careers?  I would think that whatever formula they used to get to 7 figures would still be viable.
 
 

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 "How could you gather up the stones to even show up everyday (that is a rhetorical question, I know he has 2.3 million reasons)."
 
I kind of wonder also what it would be like to be that far off, I have seen so many guys come that have dropped 50% from the alleged numbers, but this one pretty severe. As to whats it like for him, no one really says anything he puts in his 6 hours a day and goes home.    One guy back in 2000 was supposedly around 500k at PRU and his top month at the new place about 4K.  He lasted about 18 months and they just told him to go home.  From what I've seen most guys leave when they know they will not hit the t-12 for a long time if ever, or if they are about to lose a big account...As long as you show up not sure what the firms can do when guys dont pan out??

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The real question is how come the manager who recruited them still has a job??  In my opinion, most of management is completely worthless and they are the ones who should be held accountable.  They are the ones getting big bonuses when things go well, but are the first to start pointing fingers when it gets ugly.

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fritz wrote: "How could you gather up the stones to even show up everyday (that is a rhetorical question, I know he has 2.3 million reasons)."
 
I kind of wonder also what it would be like to be that far off, I have seen so many guys come that have dropped 50% from the alleged numbers, but this one pretty severe. As to whats it like for him, no one really says anything he puts in his 6 hours a day and goes home.    One guy back in 2000 was supposedly around 500k at PRU and his top month at the new place about 4K.  He lasted about 18 months and they just told him to go home.  From what I've seen most guys leave when they know they will not hit the t-12 for a long time if ever, or if they are about to lose a big account...As long as you show up not sure what the firms can do when guys dont pan out??If someone drops that low and never rebuilds they were either a one-trick pony at their old shop or they just gave up.  If they had the talent to build a 500k or 1mil book, then they had the ability to rebuild it too.

Sellout21's picture
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CNBC and Bloomberg have had a decent amount of coverage on the retention bonuses.  Most clients realize that salesmen are an extremely large part of the profitability of any organization.  The bonuses can somewhat be rationalized to keep top talent, and your average person would much rather see the foot soldiers getting bonused rather than the executive management.
I don't know if Ken Lewis is an idiot or a genius, but he's got the government by the balls now.  There's no way they will let Bank of America fail, and Lewis knows it.  If the government is giving out money, BOA wants the lion's share.  Lewis knows he can gain even more market share with a government backstop.  Warren Buffett was early too, but everyone calls him the "Oracle".

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Ferris Bueller wrote:Sellout21 - Arrogance? I conservatively manage my client money. I didn't create financial instruments that were crap and then get them AAA rated NOR did I sell them to my clients. My book consists of treasury bonds, muni bonds, and conservative stocks/mutual funds. My top clients were all UP for 2008. Fritz - I doubt you know 10 guys, let alone 100 and those 10 are the ones you happen to know at the local gay bar. If our firms don't need guys producing over 500K and can live off a random overnight block trade then maybe they should heed your advice and just fire all of us. You have expressed some dumb shit here before, but that takes the cake. That plus actively HOPING that no WS/AGE brokers get retention make you a jerkoff. Where's Put Trader, he actually made more sense than you.
 
FB not hoping nothing..if thats what you think its wrong.  Just saying heard over 2 months ago WFC does not want to pay retention.  If they do and you get some good for you.  Dont know that saying what has happened so far makes me dumb? Think I'd feel dumber if i said something was coming and it has not in 100 days.

showmethemoney's picture
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Nice job

showmethemoney's picture
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We also paid a guy 200% of his T-12 16 months ago $2.3 million up front
and the guy has not cracked 10K one month since he has been at our
place.****************************************Thats absurd. What did the guy just stop working??? He'd F'd once the money runs out. Fact they ought to fire him right now and get back what they can if he has any left. On the other hand, its not out of the question that the guy is a genius, managed to double the money in the mkt and basically if they want to fire him and demand back the money, he's in great shape.

fritz's picture
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If you get fired for lack of production they cant get the money back....If big client decides not to come, or big client dies, etc etc...too many things can and do happen beyond brokers control. The firms know the risk when they hire a recruit.  If they canned everyone who got a deal  these firms could raise billions.

Sellout21's picture
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Most contracts state that if they fire you for 'reason', they can come back and get the bonus.  I think one could definitely argue that lack of production is plenty of reason.  On the other hand, the advisor will argue all the reasons why the firm was the reason for their poor performance.

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