Published June 17, 2014
Volume 22, Number 6


Manage Money & Plan for the Future with Morgan Stanley
Well Educated Financial Advisers Help a Variety of Clients

Morgan Stanley
Michael O'Connell, First Vice President/Branch Manager, Hacienda Morgan Stanley Wealth Management

By Zoe Francis

The expert financial advisers at Morgan Stanley are eager to help clients manage their assets and make long-term plans for financial stability.

“Our financial advisers provide guidance, counsel and investment advice,” Michael O’Connell, first vice president-branch manager of the Hacienda office, said. “We profile (clients) and figure out what their needs are. We help them with their financial planning to set goals and implement investment decisions.”

The local office, specializing in wealth management, recently relocated from west Pleasanton to a more centrally located office in Hacienda.

“Pleasanton is strategically located in the crossways of some major highways,” O’Connell said. “We wanted to be in this town where some of the major business growth is.Most of the growth is happening out east, so it was smart to put us in the middle of that.”

The Pleasanton office has been open for 32 years, originally as a Dean Witter office before the firm merged with Morgan Stanley.

The Hacienda site is larger than the previous location to make room for the Hayward office, which is being folded into the local branch. It now has 60 employees, 42 of them specially trained financial advisers.

“The key is we have well-trained, well-educated financial advisers who understand markets,” O’Connell said. “They know how to profile clients to ask the right questions and implement solutions that are tailored and unique for each client.”

People who work with advisers generally fare better with their investments than they would on their own.

“Often times, inexperienced investors will make decisions at the wrong time,” O’Connell noted. “They may follow the crowd and not do as well as they might with a professional adviser.”

“The key point is to develop a long-term investment strategy and set goals,” he continued. “We help them plan for life events like children’s education, retirement and other life events that come along the way. It’s a planning-based practice.”

The local wealth management office serves individuals, families, foundations, endowments and small- to medium-sized businesses.

Anyone can benefit from the skilled services of a financial adviser, not just the wealthy.

“We certainly can bring great value to clients with significant assets, but we tailor our solutions to whatever is appropriate for the clients,” O’Connell said. “We certainly help investors with smaller portfolios.”

New York-based Morgan Stanley is a global company with 1,200 offices serving clients in 43 countries.

“It’s a leading global financial services firm providing a wide range of investment banking, securities, investment management and wealth management services,” O’Connell said. “Morgan Stanley is one of the leading competitors to be able to accomplish whatever the client needs or desires in terms of advice and help. We have numerous accolades as a firm in terms of the quality of our advisers.”

The benefit to working with a large firm like Morgan Stanley is that the local staff can draw on the expertise of the entire company to serve clients.

“We have the capabilities of a global firm to access to try to create solutions for clients,” he said. “We’re helping (clients) understand how investments work, setting plans and goals. It’s helping them understand the risks and returns of various strategies.”

The new Morgan Stanley office is at 4309 Hacienda Drive, Suite 200. Learn more about Morgan Stanley at morganstanley.com.

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