Morgan Stanley's top official said his company, owner of 51% of Smith Barney, remains committed to buying the rest of it despite flux in the financial industry.

James P. Gorman, the firm's president and chief executive, said during a presentation at the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association's annual meeting Monday that Morgan Stanley plans to buy the next 14% of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney as soon as May 2012.

"We are intent on buying [the rest of the assets] as soon as we can," Gorman said.

Gorman said the Morgan Stanley Smith Barney deal, which was announced last year, "was an extraordinary opportunity. … It was the phoenix that rose from the ashes" of the financial crisis.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.