The job of a financial analyst has never been easy, and attempting fiscal clairvoyance since the second half of 2007 has been basically impossible.However, despite the global financial tempest, some stock pickers have navigated the ebbs and flows of the markets quite impressively.
This is how they selected the world’s top financial analysts:
The ranking is based on stock recommendations made by more than 2,500 analysts worldwide at 77 research firms and investment banks from January 2008 to July 2010. It looks at the analysts’ “buy,” “hold” and “sell” calls on shares of 90 of the largest banks, diversified financial service companies and insurers in the U.S., Europe and Asia with at least 20 analysts covering them.
Based on their recommendation, we’ve highlighted the top five analysts making calls right now. Read about their best calls below.
If you want advice on diversified financial services, call:
Daniel Harris of Goldman Sachs
Bloomberg loves Harris for his “buy” call on retail broker TD Ameritrade Holding Corp in December of 2008. At the time shares sold at $12.80. Then they rose 46% over the next year. After he put a “hold” on the stock in December ’09, it slid 16% over the next 8 months.
If you want analysis on credit cards, call:
Sanjay Sakhrani of KBW
Bloomberg reports that Sakhrani “reacted early to deteriorating economic conditions by putting a “hold” on the stock of card issuer Discover Financial Services in December 2007, as delinquent payments began to rise.” Over the next 18 months, the stock toppled by 39%. Then in June ’09, he called “buy” and the stock increased by 44% over the next 13 months. Now Sakhrani likes American Express.
If you want advice on diversified banks, call:
Matt Burnell of Wells Fargo
Burnell liked Goldman Sachs in April ’09, and when July 30 rolled around, stock was up by 33%. As he called for investors to “buy” Goldman, he also rated Morgan Stanely a “hold” due to “62% of the bank’s common equity consisted of shaky commercial mortgages and other real-estate investments.” Since the bank’s stock has been flat.
If you want advice on commercial banks, call:
Chintan Joshi of Nomura Holdings
Bloomberg ranks Joshi as one of “Europe’s premier bank analysts for finding exceptions to the bad news in the Scandinavian market.” Based on the fact that Nordic banks weren’t as exposed to the U.S sub-prime crisis, Joshi called “buy” on Oslo bank DnB Nor ASA. Since then, that stock has surged by 272%.
If you want advice on diversified financial services in Asia, call:
Hunpio Hong of KTB Securities
Hong switched from “hold” to “buy” on various Korean banks in 2009, including Seoul-based Shinhan Financial Co, whose stock soared 54%.