Sorry, fellas. The next time you tell a young lady at Chloe that you work at Morgan Stanley, she may think you work in retail. And we’re not talking stock brokers.
The age when Morgan Stanley guys and gals could be assumed to be bankers, brokers or traders is coming to an end. When Morgan Stanley & Co. converted into a bank holding company last fall it hired former Wachovia executives to run its retail bank. And now a spokeswoman says the firm is hiring in Charlotte, where Wachovia was based, and New York for its retail operations.
Morgan Stanley spokeswoman Christy Pollak said the firm is still finalising its plans, but after the joint venture the firm’s strategy is “to organically build rather than to acquire a retail bank.”
Morgan Stanley will be “hiring individuals as we staff up our retail banking function,” Pollak said. Those employees will be based in New York and Charlotte, but she declined to provide details.
In November, Morgan Stanley hired former Wachovia executive Cece Sutton to run its retail bank and named colleague Jon Witter her chief operating officer.
Former Wachovia executives Ben Jenkins and Will Howle later joined her group. Morgan Stanley also tapped former Wachovia and Bank of America Corp. executive Malcolm Griggs to lead risk management for the retail bank.
Morgan Stanley has been seen as a potential source of new financial services jobs in Charlotte at a time when Wachovia and Bank of America have been slashing their ranks amid mergers. In deals forged last fall, San Francisco-based Wells Fargo & Co. bought Wachovia, and Bank of America purchased Merrill Lynch & Co.
That sounds like it’s aiming at a lot more than Smith Barney brokerage operations. Possibly actual banks branches, with tellers. More likely: an online banking operation.
In any case, working for Morgan Stanley is likely to get far less prestigious.
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