RBC Snags $1B Team From Ailing First Republic

Another team is leaving First Republic, a little more than a month after Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse led to uncertainty around First Republic’s stability.

The Todd Halbrook and Adam MacDonald Management Group, a Newport Beach, Calif.-team with about $1 billion in managed assets, is heading to RBC Wealth Management. The firm has worked with high-net-worth individuals, families and businesses for more than 20 years, and was affiliated with Wells Fargo before joining First Republic in 2018. The team is led by Managing Directors Todd Halbrook, Adam MacDonald and Vince Lovoy.

Halbrook said the team chose RBC for “its long-standing reputation of financial strength, integrity and dedication” to supporting advisors and clients. In a statement, RBC U.S. Wealth Management President Tom Sagissor said RBC “continues to be the home of best fit” for advisors looking for integrity and fiscal security.

“Not only do we feel fortunate to welcome this fantastic team of professionals, but we are also proud to be the choice of some of the industry’s top advisors amid ongoing market volatility,” he said.

Prior to Wells Fargo, Halbrook was with Citigroup and Smith Barney, while MacDonald was with A.G. Edwards & Sons and Ameriprise, according to their IAPD profiles. Lovoy also had a previous stint at Citigroup. They’re joined by Senior Financial Associate Christie Gregg and Senior Client Associate Parker Howard.

First Republic’s wealth management business grew significantly over the past decade, with the firm known to pay sizable recruiting bonuses to lure advisors from the more well-known brokerages. In time, the wealth business increased to more than $270 billion in total managed assets.

But in the wake of Silicon Valley Bank’s collapse earlier this year, the San Francisco-based First Republic began to feel the crunch. The bank’s stock market value dropped by nearly 90%, as customers pulled their funds, leaving the bank to sell assets that had declined in value during the interest rate hikes of the past year. 

Last month, 11 financial institutions injected $30 billion in deposits to stop the bleeding at First Republic, but there continues to be uncertainty; in the past month, the bank stopped paying dividends on preferred stock, suspended the common-stock dividend, eliminated annual executive bonuses and hired JPMorgan’s investment banking division to advise them, according to Yahoo Finance.

Some of the bank’s approximately 300 wealth advisors have sought out other options amid the turmoil. One of the first departures was Vishal Bakshi, a New York-based advisor who left First Republic for Morgan Stanley. Miami-based Stephen Levine and his team, as well as a team with $10.8 billion in assets, also jumped ship for Morgan Stanley, according to Barron’s.

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