Historically a bastion of reprieve from the financial sector, Twitter is set to broaden its horizons as today Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) became the first investment bank to allow brokers and wealth managers to use social media on the job. The new provisions come with some restrictions, as employees status updates will be subject to review, and statements will have to be approved by the firm before they are posted on the web. Morgan Stanley is expected to organize a test group of about 600 employees to start tweeting next month, and if all goes well, hopes to make tweeting available to every one of the firms 17,800 employees over a six month period.
Regarding the rationale for foraging into social media communications, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney U.S. wealth management boss Andy Saperstein had this to say, “The emergence of social media has changed the way in which people communicate with each other and companies interact with clients.”
One of the underwriters of last week’s LinkeIn (NYSE:LNKD) IPO, Morgan Stanley will also allow its employees to access that website, however they will not be allowed to make recommendations for themselves or other financial advisors through the LinkedIn network. Morgan Stanley joins Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Merrill Lynch, Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC), and UBS (NYSE:UBS) in allowing employees to maintain work-related LinkedIn profiles.