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SunTrust Banks, Inc. Message Board

  • olefinance53 olefinance53 Jan 6, 2010 10:52 AM Flag

    Sell Ridgeworth? Sell W&IM !

    Ridgeworth is the management company for all the STI mutual funds -- formerly SunTrust Classic Funds.

    W&IM is the new name for the Trust Department. Most of the accounts are revocable trust and can be moved. A lot of Florida customers are moving their accounts due to exorbitant fees -- 2.2% management fee on assets under management. The trust documents usually allow the customer, beneficiary, to designate a new or successor trustee -- being done on a significant scale.

    For testamentary trusts under will, many beneficiaries are filing petitions in court to appoint another trustee. STI is NOT objecting to those petitions -- doesn't want the adverse publicity of the matter going to court.

    Most mutual funds run fees in the 1.15% - 1.20% range. STI wants 2.2% -- for what? Before all the customers are gone and the business still has some value -- sell it!

    That would be "expense control" on a major basis -- eliminate staff, benefits, overhead, and all the alphabet soup titles, e.g., CAs, TAs, WSs and the overpaid non-productive management.

    The SunTrust - Crestar merger resulted in STI having banking retail and Crestar getting W&IM. It is clear the Crestar's performance in the W&IM area is a bit lacking. All in MHO.

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    • I hear that WIM across the footprint is going to be restructured (again). I guess the moving of funds from one account to a "new" account just ain't getting it now.
      Maybe my boss will be the person I work for. Hold on to your hats, here we move again.

    • S-cubed = Simple, Short & Stupid (as in keep it....)

      E-Squared = Executive Earnings (management's objective at the expense of employees)

      The one they have missed is "4Ps" -- Piss Poor Prior Planning. That is the actual business model as it presently works.

    • Bill Rogers is plenty book smart, but he thinks he's a rock star, uses the first person singular pronouns incessantly, and doesn't remember the names of underlings he's met numerous times. He loves to flash his picture on big screens at conferences and make cute little personal self-aggrandizing references, that we all dutifully laugh at while we're secretly gagging. He would be better suited as an ESPN talking head where the focus is on egos of former jocks. Obviously, whatever business school he attended forgot to tell him that successful leadership involves having a happy work force reporting to you, and one that shares your vision and knows you care about them and their efforts to serve the customers. Bill seems stuck in the 80s yuppy acronym culture, where management is a big game where if this year's flavor doesn't work, we'll just toss it and try something else, no matter how many times our clients have to learn the name of their NEW AGAIN bank contact. The long time professionals in W&IM really don't care about all the latest corporate buzzwords--that's the domain of all the 30-something managers who intimidate in pursuit of their all-important reports for senior management. These folks focus--and expect everyone else to as well-- on making sure they have their "elevator speech" or their "value proposition" well polished or that they know the latest corporate imperative by heart. Who could possibly have time for a customer in a culture where the goal is to be sure you don't trip up in the presence of management by not knowing what "S-cubed, E-squared" stands for?

    • Unfortunately, I'm afraid the service provided to customers under the "old" trust dept is not profitable enough anymore. The change in estate taxes doomed a large number of clients to be relegated to the brokers - all incented to sell something profitable to the company regardless of the client's needs. Screw the client if it makes money! I'll laugh my ass off if Congress allows the exemption to go back to $1,000,000.

    • Although there is a bit accuracy in the previous post, the general facts are not correct. The 2.2% only applies to smaller irrevocable trust accounts. Larger revocable trusts and investment accounts are only charged 1.5%, and less if they are over $1,000,000. The bank is willing to allow smaller trusts to leave because it may not be economically feasible to retain the smaller accounts. Contrary to the point of not wanting the "publicity" - the bank would rather NOT be known as a company that rolls over every time a disgruntled bene wants to close a trust. Therefore, going to court for their blessing is a prudent course of action. What would it say to potential clients that want to put their money into a trust to protect it?

      The purpose of having WIM is to provide retail banking, trust, and investment services in a coordinated fashion.

      • 1 Reply to stiemployed
      • A bit correct and some incorrect. Revocable trust, particularly in Florida, are on a 2.2% fee scale. These trust are usually family trust to avoid Florida probate requirements -- the trust documents state how the trust is to be handled after death of the Grantor/trust creator.

        Usually the trust document provides for the trust grantor to designate in writing a successor trustee(s)which is how the trust is removed from STI to another institution. Who needs STI at 2.2% when you can put the portfolio in a brokerage account in trust name and have the family management it at 0.00%

        Those types of trust are leaving in droves. The net benefit is a reduced account load for Trust Advisers so you can cut headcount (employees) and save expenses (ignoring 1% pay raises).

        Wealth Management was the old domain of Bill Rogers and did NOT set any stellar performance record under him.

        One individual commented that STI trust trains the competition. Get a couple of years under your belt at STI W&IM and go elsewhere - better pay, better management, better working environment, etc.

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