For the second time in a month, Securities America Inc., a broker-dealer in the giant Advisor Group network, has seen a significant team walk out the door, this time losing reps and advisers with a reported $3 billion in assets to rival LPL Financial.
Near the end of March, Securities America lost a giant branch office, Cooper McManus Wealth Management, with $1.5 billion in client assets, 50 advisers and at least two dozen offices across the country, to top competitor Cambridge Investment Research Inc.
Then last Thursday, JFC Financial Services, with 100 advisers and a reported $3 billion in assets, completed its move to LPL when its chief executive, Jack Connealy, switched his registration to LPL.
Echoing the comments made by a senior executive at Cooper McManus, Connealy said in an interview Monday that the change in ownership at Securities America was a significant part of the decision to move to LPL.
Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc., a network of broker-dealers that included Securities America, was recently acquired by Advisor Group, which is owned by private equity firm Reverence Capital Partners.
“After 18 years at Securities America and looking at the landscape of broker-dealers and different ownership structures and consolidation in the industry, we look at private equity ownership as a big negative,” Connealy said. “The unknowns are the ultimate owner, who would that be, and the leverage those firms have on their balance sheets.”
“We are pleased that a significant number of the financial advisers affiliated with JFC – making up a majority of its revenue – have chosen to remain with Securities America,” Jim Nagengast, chief executive at Securities America, said in a statement to InvestmentNews. “We look forward to continuing to support our advisers by leveraging Advisor Group’s industry-leading scale and proven ability to invest in the tools and platforms that advisers need to grow their practices.”