JPMorgan Chase & Co. said it will open a branch of its private bank in San Diego in 2019.

It is searching for a location for the new office and plans to hire as many as 15 financial advisors to manage money for its wealthy clients in the region.

In California, JPMorgan's private bank has a local presence in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Francisco and Palo Alto.

San Diego clients are served by Orange County-based bankers who travel part-time to Chase locations in La Jolla.

Ethan Morgan, who is based in Orange County and has responsibility for JPMorgan's private bank operations in Orange County, San Diego and the Inland Empire region, will oversee the new office's operations.

“San Diego is actively becoming one of the best places for new business and wealth growth in the country," Morgan said. "San Diego’s business community is already a big part of our work at JPMorgan Chase, and we’re partnering with our team on the ground in La Jolla to make a strong entry and strengthen the relationships we already have."

Morgan joined JPMorgan after 10 years at Wells Fargo's private bank. Previously he helped open Citigroup’s private bank offices in Orange County.

The move to open a San Diego branch is part of a broader expansion of JPMorgan's private bank, which as of last year had a local presence in 34 of the 50 wealthiest markets in the U.S., according to the bank.

JPMorgan said it plans to hire nearly 1,000 new advisors and open more than 20 such new offices by 2022, about half of which are slated to debut by 2020. The advisors will staff new sites and beef up existing offices.

The bank said San Diego is among its first wave of office openings, which will include Baltimore, Salt Lake City, Pittsburgh, Sacramento and Portland.

Reach reporter Sarah de Crescenzo at sarahd@sdbj.com.