BRADENTON, Fla. — Raymond James Financial on Tuesday announced the structure of its integrated fixed-income and public finance division resulting from its acquisition of Morgan Keegan & Co.
The new division is based in downtown Memphis at the former home of Morgan Keegan, though public finance operations will continue at Raymond James offices around the country, including the corporate headquarters in St. Petersburg, Fla.
John Carson Jr., former chief executive officer of Morgan Keegan, now heads the combined fixed-income and public finance divisions.
Rob Baird, a 31-year veteran with Morgan Keegan, is the head of public finance under Carson.
The merged firm’s co-associate heads of public finance are John Forney, former national manager of public finance in St. Petersburg, and Gavin Murrey, a managing director in Memphis.
Jonathan Nordstrom, formerly head trader for Morgan Keegan, is now the head of municipal products.
Peter Delahunt, Raymond James’ national trading manager in New York, continues to oversee municipal trading.
Raymond James on Monday closed on its acquisition of Morgan Keegan from Birmingham, Ala.-based Regions Financial Corp. for $1.2 billion in cash.
Morgan Keegan’s top 12 executives and 98% of financial advisors took retention incentive offers with the combined companies. The elimination of 218 employees, mainly in the equity capital markets and fixed-income groups, began with Monday’s closing.
Meanwhile, Moody’s Investors Service on Tuesday confirmed the Baa2 long-term issuer rating for Raymond James and changed the outlook to stable from under review for possible downgrade. It was placed in January after the acquisition of Morgan Keegan was announced.
Moody’s said the acquisition of Morgan Keegan is “based on a sound strategic rationale that will provide Raymond James with increased scale in its core private-client franchise and its agency-focused capital markets business.”
“Although the acquisition of Morgan Keegan has increased Raymond James’ debt burden, the company’s pro forma cash-flow leverage is still consistent with a Baa2 rating,” Moody’s said. “In addition, Raymond James has been successful in signing Morgan Keegan’s most productive financial advisors and the company has also executed a litigation-risk indemnification agreement with Regions Financial that should adequately protect Raymond James from Morgan Keegan-related litigation.”
Standard & Poor’s affirmed Raymond James’ BBB rating in early March. Fitch Ratings in January said the acquisition of Morgan Keegan would have no impact on its BBB-minus rating.