RBC recruited a Merrill Lynch team that oversaw $300 million in client assets, the firm said.

Led by adviser Joe Piché, the team is the latest to leave the wirehouse, which recently reported that its brokerage force declined by 145 advisers during the first quarter. Year-over-year, however, Merrill's adviser headcount rose by 72.

A Merrill Lynch spokeswoman was unavailable for immediate comment on the move.

Slideshow
Advisers on the move: Merrill Lynch loses 6 teams over fiduciary changes
The advisers oversaw nearly $900 million in combined AUM, and moved to Morgan Stanley, Raymond James and HighTower.
Image: Bloomberg
Image: Bloomberg

Piché joined the firm in Wayzata, Minnesota, according to RBC. That office is led by branch director Rick Sterling, who oversees 10 advisers and 13 support staff, per the firm.

Tom Schulenberg, director of RBC's Minneapolis complex, said in a statement that the firm is working to attract potential recruits in the area. RBC's U.S. wealth management operations is headquartered in Minneapolis.

Piché is an industry veteran of almost 30 years, having started his career at Hayne Miller & Swearingen. He had been with Merrill Lynch since 2006, according to FINRA BrokerCheck records. Previously, Piché worked at Piper Jaffray for 15 years.

RBC has approximately 1,800 advisers and $289 billion in client assets. Merrill Lynch reported having 14,484 advisers as of March 31.

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