First Empire Bolsters Leadership, Names Chris O’Connor President of First Empire Securities

Hauppauge, NY (December 4, 2017) – First Empire Securities, a national fixed income broker-dealer for institutional investors, is excited to announce the arrival of Christopher O’Connor as President. O’Connor, the former Managing Director of Capital Markets and Investment Banking at Incapital, will lead the company’s fixed income business.

“Bringing on an executive of Chris’ stature further manifests our vision in building a premiere financial services firm serving institutions of all sizes,” said Michael Belfiore, Chairman and CEO of the First Empire family of companies. “It is essential that we continue attracting professionals of Chris’s caliber to sustain an aggressive growth strategy. Chris is a big part of that plan, and we look forward to his leadership for years to come.”   

O’Connor, who will be based in the company’s New York headquarters, will oversee the build out of its institutional sales and trading capabilities, most notably the debt capital markets and other specialty finance groups. He will also lead efforts to grow the firm’s relationships with upper tier financial institutions.

“This is an exciting time to be joining First Empire as the company embraces its increasing relevance among the industries it serves,” said O’Connor. “In my efforts to grow the firm I will focus on strengthening the company's reach and breadth of services, while still remaining true to a service-based philosophy that has sustained it for more than 30 years.”

The arrival of O’Connor is the most recent high-level hire for the Long Island-based First Empire. In early November, the company added industry veterans Thomas O’Neill, a founding principal of the investment banking and brokerage firm Sandler O’Neill + Partners, and Edward LaScala, who formerly led the institutional sales group at Incapital.

Since 2015, the firm has opened offices in Chicago, Los Angeles, Memphis and Jersey City. It also has expanded its asset-backed securities, mortgage TBAs, negotiable CD funding and municipal trading capabilities. Its sister company LPC Services has become a leader in participation and whole loan sales, helping close more than $3 billion in loan deals since the start of 2015.

In addition to Incapital, O’Connor has held leadership positions at Pierpont Securities and Bear Stearns. His early career was spent as a corporate bond trader at JP Morgan Chase, First Boston and Salomon Brothers. Mr. O'Connor is a graduate of Washington and Lee University and Harvard Business School.

First Empire Securities

First Empire Securities is an institutional fixed income broker-dealer providing a broad range of products and services. The company’s seasoned traders and financial strategists, state-of-the-art analytical tools and former regulatory examiners all contribute to a full-service approach developed to help institutions improve the performance of their investment portfolios and better manage their balance sheets. First Empire Securities is a member of FINRA/SIPC.

First Empire Holding Corp.

First Empire Holding Corp. (First Empire) is the employee-owned parent company of First Empire Securities, LPC Services, Balance Sheet Management Services, First Empire CD Management and First Empire Asset Management. Today, our companies work with more than 2,000 institutions across the United States providing a range of services related to fixed income investing, participation/whole loan sales, asset liability management, regulatory consulting and funding strategies.  More information can be found at

Important Disclosures  |  Privacy Policies  |  Business Continuity Plan | Risk Disclosures  |  Volcker Rule Conflicts Disclosure

This site is published in the United States for U.S. residents only. The services offered within this site are available exclusively through our U.S. Financial Advisors. Stifel Financial Advisors may only conduct business with residents of the states in which they are properly registered. The information on this web site is not an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy any security, nor shall any such security be offered or sold to any person in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation, purchase, or sale may not lawfully be made. References to Stifel herein may apply to parent company Stifel Financial Corp. or any of its wholly owned subsidiaries, including Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Incorporated, Member NYSE, FINRA, and SIPC.

© 2019 Stifel Financial Corp.  All Rights Reserved.