6,200 brokers take Merrill Lynch's retention deal
Merrill Lynch & Co. said 99 percent of its top-selling brokers agreed to sign a retention package to keep them at the firm after its sale to Bank of America Corp.
More than 6,200 brokers accepted Bank of America's offer, including 99.3 percent of those who generated annual revenue of more than $1.75 million, said Robert McCann, chief of the brokerage unit. About 6,600 brokers who generated more than $500,000 were eligible for bonuses that range from 50 percent to 100 percent of annual production and pay out over seven years.
“We did a good job of putting together a transition award package that was fair and appropriate,” McCann, a 26-year Merrill Lynch veteran, said in an interview.
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Bank of America Chief Executive Officer Ken Lewis, 61, sought to limit departures in Merrill's brokerage ranks after agreeing in September to buy the New York-based securities firm. Bank of America separately offered deferred cash awards, payable over three years, to about half its 1,965 brokers who will join the Merrill network. Virtually all of the eligible brokers accepted, bank spokesman Scott Silvestri said.
Wachovia starts family finance Web site
Wachovia Securities has launched a new Web site, www.familyfinancialtalk.com. The site includes tips and examples to help families start and make use of conversations about financial goals and needs.
First Citizens BancShares eyes D.C.
First Citizens BancShares Inc. said Thursday that it plans to expand into Washington, D.C. The Raleigh-based bank is seeking approval to open a branch on Pennsylvania Avenue next year.