How Seinfeld Helps Explain What Is Happening At Merrill Lynch

Merrill Lynch Headman, Andy Sieg, Touts Lack Of Merrill Recruiting Deals

There really should be memes created in honor of Andy Sieg. If there was ever a bigger corporate shill  – it’s Mr. Sieg.

Maybe the Bizaro Jerry episode of Seinfeld offers up some clues.


“Up is down, down is up. He says hello when he leaves and goodbye when he arrives. “

And the best part is, he’s so committed to the messaging that nobody other than his bosses believe.

A quick reminder that some of the biggest teams and producers at legacy Merrill have been pulling the escape hatch for half of a decade now. Over and over and over again. Nearly $250B in client assets have left the firm in the past five years.

But Andy thinks that big recruiting deals are poppycock and should be frowned upon to the benefit of nameless, faceless shareholders.

“We are seeing very elevated multiples for advisers as they are being recruited firm to firm,” Sieg said at the RBC Capital Markets Financial Institutions Conference. “When we see some of the levels of competitive recruiting deals, it’s very challenging that they’re going to produce threshold returns for shareholders.”

This kind of inane commentary infuriates the best advisors that are left at the firm. And the thousands upon thousands of bank brokers and rookies that are replacing them are pre-programmed to fall in line.

If you are at Merrill it might be time to get out and get paid.

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