Raymond James notches record advisor headcount

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Raymond James's recruiting efforts boosted its advisor headcount to a new record: 7,604.

That figure is up 382 advisors over March 2017, and 67 over December, according to the company, which reported earnings Tuesday.

“Our client-focused culture, robust product offering, and extensive technology investments resonate with our existing and prospective financial advisors across all our affiliation options,” CEO Paul Reilly said in a statement.

At its current size, Raymond James is actually larger than UBS, one of the wirehouses, which recently reported about 6,900 advisors for its Americas unit. That figure includes some brokers in Latin America.

Raymond James has been aggressively pursuing new hires for both its independent and employee channels. The St. Petersburg, Florida-based firm sees having multiple methods of affiliation as an appealing factor for advisors. The employee channel also includes Alex. Brown, the firm's ultrawealthy unit that was acquired from Deutsche Bank two years ago.

To be sure, it's not the only regional firm experiencing a recruiting boom as increasing numbers of wirehouse advisors have been opting to join regional BDs or independent firms. Janney Montgomery Scott, for instance, recently announced its recruiting efforts brought in advisors managing more than $1 billion in the first quarter of this year.

For its part, Raymond James also reported that assets under administration for its Private Client Group rose 14% year-over-year to $694.8 billion. Growth in fee-based accounts was even stronger, rising 25% year-over-year to $325.1 billion.

The Private Client Group also notched record quarterly net revenue of $1.27 billion, up 17% year-over-year, and record pretax income of $157.6 million, up 437% from the year-ago period when the company took a substantial legal charge.

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Earnings Recruiting Regional BDs Independent BDs Paul Reilly Raymond James Financial