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Goldman Sachs Careers: 10 More Advisors Exit Goldman Sachs PFM

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  • Post last modified:14 October 2023
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At least ten Goldman Sachs Advisors leave. This exodus of advisors from Goldman Sachs Personal Financial Management (PFM) unveils a shifting terrain within the firm and the broader financial advisory industry. This article explores the advisor departures, their new affiliations, the impact on Goldman Sachs PFM, and the wider industry implications, shedding light on the evolving dynamics of the financial advisory sector.

Goldman Sachs News

Goldman Sachs Personal Financial Management (PFM) operates as a division within the broader Goldman Sachs entity, primarily serving the wealth management needs of high-net-worth individuals, as well as other client types like pension and profit-sharing plans, corporations, and charitable institutions. The firm generally engages with clients possessing a minimum of $500,000 in household assets. With a network spanning 74 offices across the United States, the division managed around $25 billion in assets as of 2021, with an average client having $1.3 million in assets under management. However, by 2023, the assets under management (AUM) were reported to be $13.2 billion, with a total of 349 licensed advisors providing investment advisory services to 25,345 clients.

The division experienced a significant event when Goldman Sachs decided to sell its Personal Financial Management unit, which had $29 billion in assets at the time of the announcement. This decision came in the light of Goldman Sachs exploring alternatives for its Investment Advisor Business, with the sale marking a pivotal transition for the PFM unit.

Following the sale, at least ten more financial advisors exited Goldman Sachs PFM, marking a continued trend of advisor exits in the aftermath of the sale to Peter Mallouk’s Creative Planning. The exit of these advisors has spawned a ripple effect within the industry, with Goldman Sachs launching an aggressive arbitration campaign to enforce agreements with the departing advisors.

The transition experienced by Goldman Sachs PFM and the subsequent exit of advisors encapsulate a broader narrative of change within the financial advisory landscape, reflecting both organizational and industry-level shifts.

Goldman Sachs PFM Advisors: Details of the Departure

The recent departures from Goldman Sachs Personal Financial Management (PFM) have seen various advisors moving on to new ventures and affiliations. Here are the details regarding the names, positions, and new affiliations of some of the advisors who exited Goldman Sachs PFM:

  1. Quotient Wealth Partners:
  2.  Jon Blumenthal, Brandon Ross, and Tim Harder: These advisors left Goldman Sachs PFM and formed Quotient Wealth Partners, a newly registered RIA entity that collaborates with Dynasty Financial Partners for back-office services.
  3.  Brian Weatherly, formerly a Vice President and Wealth Manager at Goldman, joined as a Vice President and Senior Wealth Advisor.
  4.  Megan Douat, previously a Vice President of Asset and Wealth Management, joined as a Vice President and Wealth Advisor.
  5.  Colin Faulk, a Senior Associate and Financial Planner.
  6.  Lucas Baker, formerly an Associate at Goldman, joined as a Senior Associate and Wealth Advisor.
  7.  Brenda Fraga, formerly a Business Officer Manager, joined as a Senior Director and Business Service Analyst.
  8.  Garrett Guidotti, formerly an Analyst, joined as a Senior Associate and Financial Planner.

Other Affiliations:

  •  Chase Gelardi, a former Wealth Advisor at Goldman, joined Meridian Wealth Management, a Lexington, Ken., and Tucson-based RIA with about $1.8 billion in assets under management.
  •  Justin Isaac, a former Vice President at Goldman, has moved to Advisors Capital Management, a Ridgewood, N.J.-based RIA.
  •  Kathleen Grace and Tabitha LeTourneau Meyerer, former United Capital advisors, started their own independent RIA, Fiduciary Family Office in Boca Raton, Fla.
  •  Lee Swinford, Amber Andregg, and Joshua Smith, all former Vice Presidents at Goldman Sachs PFM, joined Kestra’s Private Wealth Services unit. Amber Andregg launched her own practice under Kestra PWS, Symphony Wealth Group.

These movements indicate a significant reshuffling within the industry, with many advisors opting for new affiliations or starting their own ventures post their stint at Goldman Sachs PFM. The underlying reasons for these exits and the impact on both Goldman Sachs PFM and the advisors’ new affiliations hint at broader industry trends and possibly the evolving dynamics within the wealth management sector.

Impact on Goldman Sachs PFM

The departure of advisors from Goldman Sachs Personal Financial Management (PFM) post the sale of the unit could have several implications on the firm. Here are the insights drawn from various sources:

  1. Operational Impact: The exits occurred in the wake of the unit’s sale to Peter Mallouk’s Creative Planning, indicating a possibly significant operational shift. The unit had $29 billion in Assets Under Management (AUM) at the time of sale. The departures might affect the client relationships and potentially the AUM managed by Goldman Sachs PFM, although exact financial impacts are not publicly disclosed.
  2. Legal and Contractual Measures: Goldman Sachs has launched an aggressive arbitration campaign to enforce agreements with the advisors who left, indicating the firm’s attempt to mitigate potential negative impacts and protect its interests. The firm has filed claims against advisors across multiple states for violating their non-compete obligations and fiduciary duties, as per the official statement. Goldman Sachs emphasized its intention to hold advisors to the commitments made in their employment contracts and take appropriate action against any advisor violating these contractual obligations.
  3. Industry Perception: The exits and Goldman Sachs’ subsequent legal actions might also affect how the firm is perceived within the financial advisory community. Officially, Goldman Sachs declined to comment beyond a statement regarding the enforcement of its employment contracts. The statement emphasized the firm’s intention to hold advisors to their contractual commitments and its readiness to take legal action against those who violate their contractual obligations.

The information provided does shed light on Goldman Sachs PFM’s stance toward the advisor exits and the measures it’s taking to enforce contractual agreements, although more detailed financial impacts and other potential ramifications are not publicly disclosed.

Industry Implications of Goldman Sachs PFM Advisors’ Exit

The exits of advisors from Goldman Sachs PFM post-sale to Creative Planning have indeed made waves in the industry, with multiple firms reaping benefits from these movements, while also reflecting a broader trend concerning advisor retention in the financial sector.

Benefit to Other Firms:

  1. Various firms have capitalized on the opportunity to onboard experienced advisors exiting Goldman Sachs PFM.
  2. True Private Wealth Advisors, an Oregon-based Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) firm, brought on board Tommy Paterson, a former Vice President at Goldman Sachs PFM.
  3. Several large advisor teams joined firms like Farther and Apollon Wealth post their exit from Goldman Sachs PFM.
  4. A New Jersey-based team of advisors moved to Quotient Wealth Partners, a Dallas-based RIA, highlighting the geographical mobility and firm shifts occurring in the wake of Goldman’s PFM unit sale.

Wider Industry Trends:

  • The trend of advisors moving to other firms or starting their own ventures post exiting a large entity like Goldman Sachs PFM is reflective of a broader industry pattern.
  • There’s a notable increase in the demand for financial advisory services, with many individual investors entering the market, thereby creating more opportunities for advisors.
  • Advisors are urged to keep a keen eye on various market trends and factors as the industry evolves, which may also influence their career decisions and affiliations.
  • Advisor Retention:
  • Retaining top-ranked financial advisors has been highlighted as a critical aspect, reflecting the industry’s focus on holding onto valuable human capital amidst shifting landscapes.
  • Goldman Sachs PFM’s aggressive arbitration campaigns post-advisor exits reflect a larger industry concern regarding advisor retention and contractual adherence.
  • Engagement in Professional Networks:
  • Advisors are also encouraged to engage in professional networks, consult industry reports, and participate in relevant conferences to stay abreast of the latest trends impacting the sector, which could influence retention strategies across firms.

These developments indicate a dynamic and competitive landscape within the financial advisory sector, where firms vie for experienced talent, and advisors seek conducive environments for their professional growth and client service endeavors. The industry’s response to advisor movements post significant events like the sale of Goldman Sachs PFM underscores the evolving dynamics within the wealth management domain.

Responses from the Goldman Sachs PFM Advisors

The advisors who exited Goldman Sachs PFM have not widely publicized their reasons or shared their perspectives on the transition, based on the information available. Here are some findings related to the advisors’ actions and a lawsuit associated with restrictive covenants:

  1. Restrictive Covenants Lawsuit: Two California-based advisors who departed Goldman Sachs PFM ahead of its sale to Creative Planning have filed a lawsuit against their former employer, aiming to void restrictive covenants in their contracts.
  2. Advisors Joining Other Firms: Some advisors have moved on to other firms, as seen with a team of advisors based in Morristown, N.J., who joined Quotient Wealth Partners, a Dallas-based registered investment advisory firm.
  3. Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs): It’s reported that Goldman Sachs had bidders on its wealth management division agree not to hire its advisors if they fell short in the auction, which could potentially limit the destinations for exiting advisors.
  4. General Movement Away from Goldman Sachs: Over the past three years, 14 Private Wealth Advisor teams managing significant assets have left Goldman Sachs, marking an exceptional amount of movement away from the firm compared to the past two decades.

There were requests for comments from the advisors mentioned in a Wealth Management article, but the advisors did not return requests for comment before the publication. This indicates a general reluctance or restriction from the advisors in sharing their perspectives publicly, possibly due to contractual obligations or ongoing legal matters.

The limited public discourse from the departing advisors, alongside legal actions and non-disclosure agreements, suggests a complex scenario where advisors may be constrained from sharing their insights or experiences concerning their departure from Goldman Sachs PFM.

Conclusion: Potential Implications for Goldman Sachs and the industry

The recent exits of financial advisors from Goldman Sachs Personal Financial Management (PFM) underscore a notable shift within Goldman Sachs and the wider financial advisory industry. Here’s a summarization of the current scenario and its potential implications:

1. Operational Dynamics:

  • The departure of a significant number of advisors post the sale of Goldman Sachs PFM to Creative Planning suggests a changing operational dynamic within the firm. It also reflects a broader industry trend where advisors seek new opportunities or affiliations amidst organizational transitions.

2. Financial and Legal Ramifications:

  • While the exact financial impact on Goldman Sachs PFM remains undisclosed, the firm’s aggressive arbitration campaigns and legal actions hint at its intention to mitigate potential negative consequences and uphold contractual agreements.

3. Benefit to Other Firms:

  • Other financial advisory firms and newly formed RIAs have benefited by onboarding experienced advisors exiting Goldman Sachs PFM, enriching their talent pool and potentially gaining a competitive edge in the market.

4. Advisor Mobility and Retention:

  • The mobility of advisors and their ability to transition to new firms or start their own ventures indicates a competitive and dynamic landscape within the financial advisory sector. This scenario highlights the importance of advisor retention, which has become a focal point in the industry.

5. Industry Evolution:

  • The increase in demand for financial advisory services, coupled with advisors’ movements between firms, reflects the evolving needs of both clients and advisors in the modern financial landscape.

6. Looking Ahead:

  • As the dust settles post these exits, Goldman Sachs, along with other industry players, may need to re-evaluate their retention strategies to ensure a stable and conducive environment for advisors. The industry might also witness further discussions on contractual agreements, advisor mobility, and the evolving dynamics of advisor-client relationships.

7. Communicative Constraints:

  • The limited public discourse from the departing advisors and the legal battles surrounding restrictive covenants and non-disclosure agreements reveal a complex interplay of legal, contractual, and professional considerations that may shape future industry norms.

In conclusion, the unfolding events at Goldman Sachs PFM serve as a microcosm of larger industry trends, reflecting the intricate balance between organizational goals, advisor career aspirations, legal frameworks, and the evolving market dynamics. The scenario warrants attention from industry stakeholders to foster a balanced, transparent, and conducive ecosystem for both advisors and clients, ensuring the sustained growth and integrity of the financial advisory sector.

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