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Morgan Stanley Year-End Technology Glitch Reported

By George Miller of Shustak Reynolds & Partners, P.C. posted on Monday, December 30, 2013.

A new technology glitch is impacting Morgan Stanley Wealth Management’s ability to re-balance its clients’ brokerage accounts. According to an anonymous source at the firm, the glitch was so significant that the firm’s wealth management division called a “crisis management” meeting late last week.

Morgan Stanley began rolling out its new “3D” technology platform in the spring of 2012. Since its debut, the system was widely criticized by brokers as being plagued by bugs, design flaws and technical glitches. According to some of the firm’s advisors, the system since has had a multitude of serious problems, including frequent system outages, incorrect client account balances, changes to account numbers, margin issues, slow processing of trades and other problems and delays.

Morgan Stanley Wealth Management (formerly Morgan Stanley Smith Barney) is the product of a 2009 joint venture between Morgan Stanley’s wealth management division and Citigroup’s Smith Barney division. For more than two years after the joint venture, legacy Smith Barney advisors used Smith Barney’s technology platforms, while legacy Morgan Stanley advisors used Morgan Stanley’s platform. The disappointing “3D&#8221#8221; system was a new from the ground up system intended to seamlessly integrate both technology platforms. Problems with the system in past months have caused some of Morgan Stanley’s highest-producing advisors to leave the firm and bring claims for damages.

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