Prudential Securities

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Prudential Securities
Industry Investment banking
Fate Acquired by Wachovia Corporation to form Wachovia Securities
Predecessors Bache & Co., Prudential-Bache Securities
Successors Wachovia Securities and Jefferies Bache
Founded 1981
Defunct 2003
Headquarters New York, New York
Products Financial services
Parent Prudential Financial

Prudential Securities was the financial services arm of the insurer, Prudential Financial. In 2003, Prudential Securities was merged into Wachovia Securities, a division of Wachovia Bank.[1]


Prudential Securities traces its origins to the founding of the Leopold Cahn & Co. brokerage and investment bank in 1879. In 1891, the firm was reorganized as J.S. Bache & Co. after Jules Bache was brought into the partnership.

In 1974, Bache merged with Halsey, Stuart & Co., a Chicago-based investment bank founded in 1911. In 1952, Halsey, Stuart made headlines when its managing partner, Harold L. Stuart, testified before the U.S. Supreme Court for the government's antitrust case against Morgan Stanley and 16 other major investment banks. The fact that Halsey, Stuart was a significant investment banking firm, at the top of the IPO league tables in 1951 led some observers to suspect that they had provoked the government's antitrust suit.[2] [3]

Prudential-Bache logo, ca. 1984

In 1981, the company (then called Bache Halsey Stuart Shields) was acquired by Prudential Financial and renamed Prudential-Bache Securities. Prudential dropped the usage of the Bache name in 1991, renaming the division Prudential Securities.

In 1989, the firm acquired Thomson McKinnon [4] a top 20 brokerage and investment banking firm.

Merger with Wachovia[edit]

Prudential Financial combined its retail brokerage in a joint venture with Wachovia to form Wachovia Securities LLC on July 1, 2003. Wachovia purchased 62% of the joint venture, while Prudential retained the remaining 38%.[5] At the time, the new firm had client assets of $532.1 billion, making it the nation's third largest full service retail brokerage firm based on assets.[5] Prudential, which had been looking to sell its brokerage division, sought to use the joint venture's larger brokerage network to market its insurance products, while Wachovia sought to expand its investment banking business through the combination.[6]

Remaining Business[edit]

Following the joint venture with Wachovia, Prudential Financial retained the commodities and financial derivatives businesses. These businesses did not use the Bache name. However, in January 2003, Prudential Financial rebranded the two units under the Bache name, forming Prudential Bache.[7] This unit was sold to Jefferies & Company parent Jefferies Group in 2011.[8][9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Prudential, Wachovia Complete Corporate Merger The State Journal, July 18, 2003
  2. ^ Time Magazine, Nothing Short of Criminal, Mar. 17, 1952.
  3. ^ Ron Chernow, The House of Morgan, (Touchstone Books, 1990), pp. 502-503.
  4. ^ Thomson McKinnon Said to Be in Sale Talks. New York Times, June 9, 1989
  5. ^ a b "Wachovia Corp. and Prudential Financial, Inc. Complete Combination of Brokerage Units" (Press release). Wachovia Corporation. 2003-07-01. Retrieved 2007-10-14. 
  6. ^ Prudential and Wachovia Said to Be Near Merging Units. New York Times, February 10, 2003
  7. ^
  8. ^ Marcinek, Laura; Buhayar, Noah (April 7, 2011). "Jefferies to Buy Prudential Commodities for $430 Million". Bloomberg. 
  9. ^