October 22, 2012 / 8:30 PM / 6 years ago

Exclusive: Morgan Stanley private wealth executive departs

(Reuters) - Palmer Murray, a veteran Morgan Stanley (MS.N) broker and former L.A.-based executive director of private wealth management, has left the firm to join an independent advisory firm in Beverly Hills.

Murray, who has been in the wealth management industry for two decades, left Morgan Stanley to join Beverly Hills-based Lourd Capital Management. Murray was a top-ranked adviser at Morgan Stanley and managed $4 billion in client assets in 2011, according to a Barron’s ranking of top financial advisers from that year.

Lourd Capital confirmed the hire on Monday. The firm said in a statement published on its site that it intends to “rebrand and rename the firm to reflect Mr. Murray’s addition.”

Morgan Stanley did not immediately confirm the departure, but regulatory filings show Murray moved on October 8.

Murray had been at Morgan Stanley for 15 years, most recently as an executive director with the firm’s private wealth management group, the company’s ultra-high-net-worth division which caters to clients with at least $20 million in assets. Prior to working for Morgan Stanley, Murray had been an adviser with the Trust Company of the West.

Murray was joined by adviser Annie Shieh, who will be a portfolio manager at Lourd Capital. Shieh had worked with Murray for more than 13 years, also at Morgan Stanley.

Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, which is partially owned by Citigroup (C.N), also lost top-ranked adviser Rebecca Rothstein and her 11-member team on Friday. Rothstein, who managed $2.5 billion in client assets and was based in Beverly Hills, left the firm to join rival brokerage Merrill Lynch.

Rothstein was a well-respected adviser at Morgan Stanley and close to Chief Executive James Gorman, according to sources. She had spoken directly to Gorman on behalf of a group of several dozen top advisers who drafted a letter to the CEO, outlining their concerns, two sources familiar with the conversation said.

Reporting by Ashley Lau in New York; Editing by Gary Hill, Bernard Orr

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