Morgan Stanley has been hiring. After declaring its intention of recruiting 400 sales and trading professionals in August, it said it had hired 200 of them by October. Yesterday, it revealed there are now only 50 more of those vacancies to be filled.
The emphasis so far seems to have been on rates and FX. In a slightly garbled exposition of the strategic motivation for hiring during yesterday's conference call, Morgan Stanley CFO Colm Kelleher, said he's, "very focused, or will be going forward, on our interest rate and foreign exchange businesses." This is because, "we just don't have the footprint from a client point of view, and the salesmen and traders themselves."
Headhunters in London confirm that Morgan Stanley's already done a reasonable amount of sales and trading recruitment, bringing on the likes of Kirsty Garrett from Merrill Lynch to bolster its FX sales business.
However, most London headhunters also say there's still more hiring to be done, particularly after the decimation of Morgan Stanley's fixed income team in 2008. "They've hired in macro, the hedge fund space and Southern Europe. I'd say they need another hire in hedge funds and real money, and one or two corporate hires," says an FX headhunter.
Morgan Stanley may also be obliged to hire if its markets staff prove unimpressed by their bonuses. "Most people were paid terribly for 2008. They won't tolerate it for another year," says a headhunter.