Big change is coming to Raymond James, especially after its merger with Morgan Keegan, says. Recruiters are still weighing in on what it all means.

“The merger will work unless they woefully underpay on a retention package,” Mickey Wasserman of Michael Wasserman and Associates told “Everybody’s taking a wait and see attitude right now, and I believe that there’s a bit of relief that a private equity firm did not come into play. I think that this is a good marriage.”

Charles “Chip” Roame of Tiburon Strategic Advisors argues that picking up Morgan Keegan “is a great buy for Raymond James, albeit at a steep price.” He said that “while Raymond James will absorb much of the Morgan Keegan managerial infrastructure, complicated organizational structures like this have a way of clearing themselves up a year later as some people retire, move to companies, etc.”

“They’re not playing in the same ballpark as the wirehouses, but it’s a ball park that they want to be in, Manhattan recruiter Rich Schwarzkopf told “They’ve found their niche in small towns,” he notes, “in a way more like an Edward Jones.”

There is still a lot to do before the two companies fit together. Tash Elwyn, an executive with Raymond James, told that “there’s going to be a lot of heavy lifting for many months to come.”

Written by Lisa Swan