We've been around since 1871

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FreeFromJones's picture
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I can't believe that I used to tell people that Jones has been around since 1871 and that they still spew this same nonsense.  I was at a friend's Grand Opening of his EDJ office and he actually said "We trace our roots back to 1871."  I thought I was going to blow chunks and had to leave the room because I started coughing so hard.  The worst part is I think people actually believe that nonsense even though Ed Jones wasn't even a sparkle in his pappy's eye yet.
Spiffy, you've got to get them to change that line to the truth!!!

troll's picture
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Where do the get 1871 from?

advisor28's picture
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Jones gets 1871 from an aquisition of a Bond firm started in 1871, Jones actually came about in 1922.  Due to the merger they get to use the oldest firms inception date.  I dont remember the name of the firm.

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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The firm was Whittaker and Co.  It was industry standard for years to use a starting date of a company you acquired.  If you'll pay attention (if you care) to Jones material these days, you find we've dropped the 1871 bit.  It still shows up from time to time, but Weddle and Co made a decision to stop using it.  Probably because if discussions just like this one.

FreeFromJones's picture
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Joined: 2006-11-29

I'm glad they decidied to stop using it, because it's B.S. They just need to inform all FAs to not use bogus information to try and impress.

advisor28's picture
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1871 or 1922, either way it's old and so is the transaction model that was created at that time.
Spiff, did you open 10 or were you an account opener leader for the month say 18-33 new accounts?  

footsoldier's picture
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That's an interesting point. They give the shovel award for opening 120 new accounts in the first year and fail to recognize the broker who opens few accounts but generates revenue that they share disproportionally with the rep.
Go figure.

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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I've never found I need to open a bunch of accounts to hit my goals.  I'd rather have 4 or 5 decent sized ones vs. 10 new IRAs.  I will this month, but it's because I have a few households moving over that all have trusts, IRAS, and Roths. 
I disagree that Jones fails to recognize the rep who generates revenue.  They just do it with different awards.  The shovel award is based on principle Ted Jones lived by that if you can open 10 new accounts a month for your first year, then you will be successful.  The dollars follow the accounts.  There are a lot of awards based only on production, but the shovel award is the only one based on activity.

Broker24's picture
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And it's only in your first year.  That's what you should be doing in your first year.  Nearly every other award they give is based on production.
Good friend of mine has been out about 10 years.  He still opens 15-20 new accounts per month - all referral stuff.  In his seg 5 training, he was told to knock off the new accounts and focus on what he already had - start culling through the book and mining for gold.
Look, Jones has plenty of faults.  But criticizing them for recognizing a good start to your business does not seem so bad to me. 

nestegg's picture
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Joined: 2007-06-14

You realize this means Wachovia Securities was founded in 1887 now...

shredder's picture
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nestegg wrote:You realize this means Wachovia Securities was founded in 1887 now...
Good one....

whitewlfz's picture
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Spaceman Spiff wrote:
I've never found I need to open a bunch of accounts to hit my goals.  I'd rather have 4 or 5 decent sized ones vs. 10 new IRAs.  I will this month, but it's because I have a few households moving over that all have trusts, IRAS, and Roths. 
I disagree that Jones fails to recognize the rep who generates revenue.  They just do it with different awards.  The shovel award is based on principle Ted Jones lived by that if you can open 10 new accounts a month for your first year, then you will be successful.  The dollars follow the accounts.  There are a lot of awards based only on production, but the shovel award is the only one based on activity.

 
I won that award with Jones..when I was with them.. and you are right it is the only one for your activity ..and when you are spanking new ..ACTIVITY ..is all you have.. I did though find that once that hurdle was over ..the money did follow.. mind you I was doing this during the 90's rush to the market.. boy ..what good times.. knocking on doors in the middle of January at 8am..and freezing my a** off ..
 

Glad2Bindy's picture
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Joined: 2007-07-03

I got that shovel award too... good times.  Now I realize it was to shovel all the crap away that EDJ was feeding us!!!  (I couldn't resist!). 
But whitewlfz is right, you have to start somewhere and beating on doors is a start.  I started in an older neighborhood and all the doors were solid hardwood.  I remember my knuckles actually being sore.  I'd comment on the lady's flowers and hand her an "Edward Jones and You" brochure.  Good times...

STL Sucks's picture
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Joined: 2007-03-10

Long weekend, wonder how many brokers in the industry quit today?

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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Joined: 2006-08-08

A lot I'd assume.  Probably more at AGE than at Jones. 

footsoldier's picture
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SS-
Don't be so smug my good friend. Someday the old guard at Jones will retire and then the profit mongers will be available for takeover, just as it happened at AGE.
Never ever say it can't happen. Greed is everywhere, even at Jones.

STL Sucks's picture
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No, I ment industry wide, not just Jones. We had one last weekend. I got one nice account. Hope more quit.

advisor28's picture
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Spiff,
Keep in mind Wachovia is now in your backyard and has the necessary chips to make one more large aquisition...Per Jones future: I will bet that the growth goal for the firm won't sustain over the next 10 years and with the average producer being $250K (generous estimate) there will be a push to go public via aquisition.  Jones will continue to be behind in platform and tools, 2 trips for $215k producers will go away and the metro reps will get tired of not getting a good bonus for the same production the rural reps attain.  Simple interest partnership will not keep up with the new packages of today..   
 

gad12's picture
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Joined: 2006-12-06

I agree that sometime before us young chaps are done - Jones will go in directions mentioned above.

AllREIT's picture
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gad12 wrote:I agree that sometime before us young chaps are done - Jones will go in directions mentioned above.

It could stay private as an LP, but eventually EDJ is going to have to convert to a fee model.

In the mean time, I'd be building up the capital markets desks, so EDJ
can have customised bond portfolio's as a unique selling point over
schwab/fidelity.

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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advisor28 wrote:
Spiff,
Keep in mind Wachovia is now in your backyard and has the necessary chips to make one more large aquisition...Per Jones future: I will bet that the growth goal for the firm won't sustain over the next 10 years and with the average producer being $250K (generous estimate) there will be a push to go public via aquisition.  Jones will continue to be behind in platform and tools, 2 trips for $215k producers will go away and the metro reps will get tired of not getting a good bonus for the same production the rural reps attain.  Simple interest partnership will not keep up with the new packages of today..   
 

I won't disagree with you, because my crystal ball doesn't work correctly and neither does yours.  
My thoughts are that Jones will not go public through acquisition.  We might go public like Goldman did, but not through because a bank like WB buys us out.  However, if it happens I don't see it for a long time.  You must have missed all the conversations in the past on this board about the GPs WANTING to keep the average production just above profitability.  If I'm a GP I want as many dollars going into the firm's pockets (and consequently mine) and as little as possible into the FAs.  The way you accomplish that is to have a ton of brokers getting little to no bonus, but enough commission dollars to be profitable.  Keep as much of the 60% at home as you can.  Why would I want to screw that up.
I don't know what the fee based platform is going to be.  Weddle hasn't called to ask my opinion on the matter.  Until it rolls out I'm not going to argue about it.
I don't think Jones is as far behind on the tools and platform process as you believe.  Seems like every other week we have some transfer broker sending in a Suggbox to Weddle thanking him for the way the company runs and the tools we have.  I've never had a one on one conversation with someone from another firm that has pointed out glaring deficiencies in the software we use here.  If you want to be the first, be my guest.  I'd love to hear what you have that is far superior to what we use. 
If the trips go away, I would seriously look at either 1)heading back to a team leader position at the home office or 2) looking at indy world.  Unless I was making so much by that time that it doesn't matter if the firm sends me on vacation or not.  Right now, they are a great bonus.  If they go away I would guess it will be because some regulating body tells us to make them go away, not because Jones GPs want to keep more money in their pocket.  They get to take those trips too.
I'm not going to complain about the simple interest LP.  The worst return it's had since 1979 was 15%.  It hit 57% in '82 and 56% in '86. 20 and 30% were the norm in the 90's.  Guaranteed 7.5% isn't shabby either.  Only downside I see with it is that it isn't always available like company stock.    Oh well,  can't have your cake and eat it too.
 

troll's picture
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Joined: 2004-11-29

Spiff may drink a little of the kool aid, but he speaks the truth and has a pretty balanced view compared to many.Good post Spiff.Personally I don't see EdJones being acquired.  Their one-man office is so unconventional compared to the rest of the industry(and expensive), and as such I can't see another firm willing to pony up to buy them.

Broker24's picture
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joedabrkr wrote:Spiff may drink a little of the kool aid, but he speaks the truth and has a pretty balanced view compared to many.Good post Spiff.Personally I don't see EdJones being acquired.  Their one-man office is so unconventional compared to the rest of the industry(and expensive), and as such I can't see another firm willing to pony up to buy them.
Joe & Spiff,
I tend to agree.  Though as I think about it, it would be a great launching pad for an LPL or Ray Jay.  It seems to me that it (being an acquisition of EDJ) would only fit into an independant B/D model.  If one of them acquired EDJ, they could maintain the EDJ training for new hires, the one-man office setup, etc., as well as some of the culture, and then allow seasoned brokers to transition over to the indy platform when they want to.  They could just feed the machine with trained brokers from "Jones" (and since so many already come from EDJ, why not just BUY them?), without all the pomp-and-circumstance of trying to jump ship to another firm and losing clients.
I do not see a bank or wirehouse buying us.  I just don't see the economic viability of such a transaction.
Really what it comes down to is how greedy the GP's are.  To be honest, I think they are all making pretty serious coin right now, without having to answer to anyone.  If I made that much money, and was not owned by a public entity or larger independant entity, I think I would be pretty content.  Then again, it also comes down to the long-term viability of our model.  If we start to flounder or stop growing, we might have to look at being acquired.  But until then, I don't see the GP's selling out.
 

footsoldier's picture
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B24-
I think LPL or Ray Jay would be the last in the line to acquire. They want seasoned reps that can manage themselves. The majority of Jones reps are newbies.
My guess, since we are guessing would be an insurance company that has a similar business model,i.e., an Allstate or State Farm or Farmers. If they wanted the brokerage side, how hard would it be to integrate a p/c shop with a street corner mentality?

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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You think there are mass defections at AGE right now, just think what would happen if Allstate or State Farm acquired Jones and we all had to do p/c biz too.  I'd definitely be calling Joe and seeing if he needs a partner. 
I think it would be far to difficult to predict how many FAs are going to stay for anyone to grow through acquisition of Jones.  Imagine how it would look on that company's balance sheet when they suddenly have 5000 offices around the country they're paying rent on without any offsetting income because the FA went indy or took a big check from a wire.  It would take them years to make it up.  It's not like AGE that had a lot of big office building they owned that could be sold.  Jones doesn't actually own a lot of property.  All of the offices are leased.  
The average tenure of Jones FAs keeps going up.  At least in my region it does.  Seg 4 is now the biggest segment in our region.  5 years ago it was 1 and 2.  I think you are going to start seeing a lot diffent wants and needs being communicated to the home office folks from the FAs.  Like the Financial plannning tools that were rolled out and the fee based platform that is coming.
Like I said.  Maybe going public like Goldman is a possibility, but I don't think anyone is going to acquire us.  

footsoldier's picture
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Spiff-
One last thought. You mentioned that if the trips went away you would seriously look at going back to home office.
I will admit they are well done. My wife misses them more than I did. I can easily pay for the additional cost going alone. Why such importance on the trips. Its not the people, hell I rarely knew anyone that I felt the need to communicate with after the trip. I am intrigued by your comment.

advisor28's picture
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Spiff,
Did you come out of home office and take over an existing branch??No wonder your so loyal to the Jones way.  As for defections, AGE has very few at all firm wide.  More people have left Jones when they attain 5-7 years in the biz then any other firm.  Please explain the going back to home office comment. Jones is a Mecca for low producing FA's and your right there is nothing wrong with that, my question is why? I have my own thoughts on the matter what are yours? Please don't tell me you know a few guys who gross $1million, there are many more outside of Jones per firm.

troll's picture
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Spaceman Spiff wrote:You think there are mass defections at AGE right now, just think what would happen if Allstate or State Farm acquired Jones and we all had to do p/c biz too.  I'd definitely be calling Joe and seeing if he needs a partner.  I'll make sure to keep an eye out on the local news and keep the phone nearby.....

troll's picture
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advisor28 wrote:Spiff,
Did you come out of home office and take over an existing branch??No wonder your so loyal to the Jones way.  As for defections, AGE has very few at all firm wide.  More people have left Jones when they attain 5-7 years in the biz then any other firm.  Please explain the going back to home office comment. Jones is a Mecca for low producing FA's and your right there is nothing wrong with that, my question is why? I have my own thoughts on the matter what are yours? Please don't tell me you know a few guys who gross $1million, there are many more outside of Jones per firm.Now we know why Spiff is "loyal to the Jones way"....so maybe you can explain why you have such a big chip on your shoulder?

footsoldier's picture
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OH Spiffmeister-
Would you be suprised to know that many leases negotiated at Jones have 3 month out clauses?
Jones may have long term horizons for clients, but do they for themselves?
 

shredder's picture
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FYI, very few of AGE offices are "owned". The vast majority are leased.

advisor28's picture
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Joe,
Per your question, it is not my intent to give Spiff or any other Ed Jones Broker a hard time I'm sure they are very capable advisors...My issue with Jones is that the advisors they train are given a consistant message that other firms do it wrong.  I was treated well and I treated them well, what I've realized since I've been gone is that I have a greater respect for many advisors outside of Jones as well as those within.  I had alot of success in the system and was very involved in leadership, but I can speak from only my own accounts for nearly 6 years. No chip on my shoulder but I think a reality check is necessary for clarity and mutual respect within the industry.   

footsoldier's picture
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Joe-
Spiff is one of the brighter Jones reps. That being said, Spiff has only his experience with Jones. Hasn't worked for any other firm, hasn't started a biz from scratch.
When he looks outside Jones, he will find that his training at Jones will catapult him to much greater success. He will be stifled at Jones. He is too smart and probably too good to stay.
Spiff-
I hope you interpret my comments as a compliment to you. Advisor28,Spiked, myself and many others were in your shoes at one time. We have the perspective of different platforms, software, programs etc...Your career will skyrocket when and if you leave. It's the rare Jones broker that makes it to the promised land.
Seg 4 , in my neck of the woods is barely making it. Remember its not what you gross but what your net net is after everything. 

bspears's picture
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Joined: 2006-11-08

Foot, I believe your talking to deaf ears.....

Spaceman Spiff's picture
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Not deaf ears spears.  Ears that are not completely convinced that the grass is greener. 
You guys are correct that my only brokerage firm experience is with Jones.  I've never denied it or implied differently.  I will say the fact that I started with some assets is only marginally important in the long run. 
28 is correct that Jones tends to tell FAs that everyone outside of Jones is evil.  Especially those of you who jumped to the dark side of Indyworld.  You guys were failures who couldn't cut it at Jones and had no other choice but to go indy. 
For the record, I don't agree with that sentiment.  I think there are quality advisors at every firm.  I just haven't met them yet. 
I have friends that are now with RJ, LPL, UBS, Wach, Morgan, and a couple at banks.  All former Jones guys, so I know they are quality people.  All of them have said they had a great time at Jones, but were ready for something different.  Some of them wanted to do more fee based.  Some of them wanted to work with a team.  Some of them didn't want to prospect anymore.  Only one of them was asked to leave by Jones for lack of production and went indy. 
Define success for me.  Is success more money in the bank?  Is success reaching AUM goals?  Is it brining in larger clients?  Is it helping more clients reach their goals.  Maybe your definition of success is not the same as mine.  I know what I believe and I stand by those beliefs.  When the company I work for no longer matches what I believe is best for my clients and my family, I'll leave.  It's pointless to jump from the fire into the frying pan until the heat gets turned up.   

AllREIT's picture
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Joined: 2006-12-16

Spiff, you should ignore all the EDJ bashing.
As E B Farnum on Deadwood says:  "One hopes for the best. One perseveres. One reevaluates constantly. One is an asshole if one doesn't."
While EDJ has huge conceptual flaws, that doesn't really affect your ability to service clients within the EDJ framework. If the EDJ framework as a whole, is the best for clients and advisors, is questionable, but a personal decision.

troll's picture
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shredder wrote:FYI, very few of AGE offices are "owned". The vast majority are leased.What does that have to do with the price of tea in China?

bspears's picture
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Joined: 2006-11-08

All bashing aside, EDJ's allowed me to join this industry, trained me to sell and taught me just enough to feel comfortable leaving and going Indy.  I will be selfish here and say I don't want anymore LPL reps, at least in my location.  I have 3 in my town and one empty Jones office.  Now granted I transfer any acct from them I can with no flak or some dumbass GP calling me.

Broker24's picture
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advisor28 wrote: Joe,

My issue with Jones is that the advisors they train are given a consistant
message that other firms do it wrong.  I was treated well and I treated
them well, what I've realized since I've been gone is that I have a greater
respect for many advisors outside of Jones as well as those within.  [/
QUOTE]

This is a true statement. I have had conversations with several other
Jones advisors, and often the topic comes up of someone else their
client/prospect is currently with. It always seems to lead to criticism of
the other advisor (i.e. oh, he's got them in all annuities, he's paying a
wrap fee, he's in C shares, he's using hedge funds, blah, blah, blah).

I believe in much of what Jones tries to do. But I also caution these guys
not to assume too much about other advisors. I tell them most "firms"
are not bad, just bad advisors. It can be a slippery slope when you start
bashing every other way of doing things in this business. There are a
thousand ways to skin the cat in this business, and A-share mutual funds
and long bonds are not the only way.

Yes, I have seen some REALLY sleazy stuff done at other firms. But I have
also seen really good portfolios come from other firms, and really bad
stuff in Jones portfolios.

I do think our culture goes a little too far in their opinion of other firms.
But here's the thing...I think advisors in the field mis-interpret some of
the opinions of senior management. "Jones" has a long-term, cost-
effective investment philosophy. Their policies and opinions tend to
match that. That's fine. But new advisors tend to interpret that stance as
"all other firms are bad".

I'm perfectly fine with Jones, but I have to agree that we tend to take our
own opinions a little too seriously sometimes.

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