Morgan Stanley’s CEO To Step Down

Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) Chief Executive John Mack will relinquish the chief executive position at the New York-based firm effective January 1, 2010. He will be replaced by James P. Gorman, one of the investment bank’s co-presidents, the company said in a statement late Thursday.

Mack, 64, who will remain chairman, told his board of directors 18 months ago that he would like to step down as CEO after turning 65 in November, Morgan Stanley lead director Robert Kidder said in the statement.

“John and the board have been working closely together to ensure a smooth and successful CEO succession process,” Kidder said. “Given our tremendous progress, we believe now is the right time for that transition.”

Mack’s replacement, James P. Gorman, 51, joined Morgan Stanley in February 2006 as the President and Chief Operating Officer of the Global Wealth Management Group (GWMG). In October 2007, Gorman took on the additional role of Co-Head of Strategic Planning. Prior to joining Morgan, Gorman held several senior executive positions at Merrill Lynch.

Walid Chammah, another Morgan Stanley co-president who was also seen as a candidate for the top job, was named chairman of Morgan Stanley International.

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