With 2013 officially over, it’s accountability time.
We spoke to TipRanks, a service that allows you to track the success of market analysts based on comments they make in the media, to find out who on Wall Street made the best calls last year.
TipRanks measures analysts’ “success rate” based on how their calls perform relative to the S&P 500 and the statistical difficulty of their calls.*
Here’s what they found:
1. Corey Davis, Jefferies
Pharmaceuticals [Vanda (VNDA), Acelrx Pharmaceuticals (ACRX), Elan Corporation (ELN), Forest Labs (FRX), Endo Health (ENDP), Valeant Pharmaceuticals (VRX), Salix (SLXP), Antares Pharmaceuticals (ATRS)]
Success Rate: 92%
Average Return: +16.6%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: AcelRx (+76.7%) “We see a clear market opportunity for ARX-01 given the current standard of care for post-op pain control is fraught with drawbacks.”
2. Daniel Fannon, Jefferies
Asset Management [T. Rowe Price (TROW), Intercontinetal Exchange (ICE), The Blackstone Group (BX), Affiliated Managers (AMG), CME Group (CME), Invesco Ltd. (IVZ), Icahn Enterprises L.P. (IEP)]
Success Rate: 88%
Average Return: +5.3%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: Invesco Ltd. (+15.9%) “Our estimates are moving modestly higher, mostly due to domestic equity market gains, as well as improving fee rates and generally higher flow assumptions. We believe AMG and IVZ are poised for strong flows and positive earnings revisions.”
3. Ella Ji, Oppenheimer
Chinese consumer and business service companies [E-House (China) (EJ), Noah Holdings (NOAH), Melco Crown (MPEL), China Distance Education, Holdings Ltd. (DL), New Oriental Education (EDU), Suntech Power (STPFQ)]
Success Rate: 100%
Average Return: +33.8%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: China Distance Education Holdings (+60.5%) “We are upgrading DL to Outperform from Perform and introducing an $US8 target. Momentum in its core accounting test prep services has picked up, and we anticipate a 23%/35% revenue/EPS CAGR for FY12-14.”
4. Mark Mahaney, RBC Capitalist
Internet Stocks [Twitter (TWTR), Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO), Wix.com Ltd. (WIX), Facebook (FB), Netflix (NFLX), Google (GOOG), Priceline.com (PCLN), Pandora (P), Amazon (AMZN), Ebay (EBAY), AOL Inc. (AOL)]
Success Rate: 72%
Average Return: +12.5%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: Twitter (+126.4%) “Twitter is becoming an essential service for consumers, businesses, media companies, and advertisers.”
5. Arvind Bhatia, Sterne Agee
Interactive Entertainment, Digital Entertainment and Consumer [Electronic Arts (EA), Groupon Inc. (GRPN), Facebook Inc. (FB), GameStop (GME)]
Success Rate: 78%
Average Return: +11.4%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: Groupon (+41.9%) “Eric and Ted will bring in a new CEO with a strong operating background to move the company forward, so they not only grow the top line but more importantly the bottom line.”
6. William Plovanic, Canaccord Genuity
Medical Technology [Enteromedics Inc. (ETRM), MIMedx Group (MDXG),Stryker (SYK), Dexcom (DXCM), Insulet Corp. (PODD), NuVasive (NUVA)
Globus Medical (GMED), Cyberonics (CYBX)]
Success Rate: 100%
Average Return: +11.9%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: MiMedX (+72.7%) “By our estimates, the dermal substitute segment of the advanced wound care market generated ~$345M of revenues in 2012, growing ~23% per year since 2009.”
7. Christopher O’Cull, KeyBanc
Food Service [Domino’s Pizza (DPZ), Red Robin Gourmet Burger (RRGB), Jack In The Box (JACK), Brinker International (EAT), Ignite Restaurant Group (IRG), Texas Roadhouse (TXRH), Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD)]
Success Rate: 100%
Average Return: +11.2%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: Ignite Restaurant Group (+23.7%) “The company’s profits will eventually get a boost from it acquisition of Romano’s Macaroni Grill.”
8. Michael Olson, Piper Jaffray
Online Media, Online Travel and Video Games [Chegg Inc. (CHGG), Universal Electronics (UEIC), TiVo Inc. (TIVO), Stratasys (SSYS), GameStop (GME), OpenTable (OPEN), Priceline (PCLN), Electronic Arts (EA), HomeAway (AWAY), Take-Two (TTWO)]
Success Rate: 81%
Average Return: +8.7%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: GameStop (+44.0%) “We expect the PS4 will be a meaningful growth driver for GameStop as the retailer’s hardware market share has grown from 20% during 2006 [the time of the PS3’s launch] to 35% today.”
9. Gary Balter, Credit Suisse
Home Improvement [Container Store Group (TCS), Sears Holdings (SHLD), Best Buy Co. (BBY), Bed Bath and Beyond (BBBY), Ulta Salon (ULTA)]
Success Rate: 90%
Average Return: +12.6%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: Ulta Salon (+24.9%) “While not having a permanent CEO and weaker gross margins in Q1 raise concerns, the question we asked is do we believe in the growth potential of the concept. … Given that our answer is yes, and given that yes implies a growth rate of 25% to 30% at a low 20’s multiple, we now like that risk reward.
10. John Baugh, Stifel Nicolaus
Home Furnishings [Mohawk Industries (MHK), Conn’s (CONN), Tempur Sealy (TPX), Owens Corning (OC), Select Comfort Corporation (SCSS), Furniture Brands (FBN), La-Z-Boy Inc. (LZB), Mattress Firm (MFRM)]
Success Rate: 90%
Average Return: +12.1%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: Furniture Brands (+56.6%) “We believe some form of liquidation of the company or bankruptcy filing is imminent.”
11. Timothy Ramey, D.A. Davidson
Food, Beverage and Nutrition Industries [Herbalife (HLF), NuSkin (NUS), Tyson Foods (TSN), Flowers Foods (FLO), Smithfield Food (SFD), Balchem Corp (BCPC), Constellation Brands Inc. (STZ)]
Success Rate: 77%
Average Return: +5.8%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: NuSkin (+38.0%) ” I am valuation sensitive on NUS as it has reestablished a somewhat premium evaluation.”
12. Victor Anthony, Topeka Capital
Media and Internet Sectors [Twitter (TWTR), Google (GOOG), Ebay Inc. (EBAY), Amazon (AMZN), Facebook (FB), AOL Inc. (AOL), Shutterfly (SFLY)]
Success Rate: 67%
Average Return: 9%
Most successful recommendation of 2013: Twitter (+125.9%) “We believe that Twitter’s user and advertising monetization platform is in the early innings. We see a well-defined ecosystem with strong network effects developing around Twitter that should lead to out-sized shareholder returns for years to come. As such, we recommend investors buy the shares of Twitter to capture upside from Twitter’s value creation engine.”
*Here’s the methodology from TipRanks:
TipRanks looks at a variety of benchmarks, including the traditional % average over the S&P 500 and performance success rate. But, we go far beyond this information in our ranking over the analysts.
When it comes to evaluating adviser performance, we not only measure how much an analyst outperforms a specific benchmark, but also how consistent they are in doing so.
As such, TipRanks uses the statistical Z-test to determine the statistical viability / consistency of financial advisers stock recommendations against a benchmark.
Z-test enables answering tough questions when it comes to comparing financial advisor performance, for example:
· Which adviser has a better success rate, one that gave 10 recommendations out of which 7 outperformed the benchmark (70%) or one that gave 100 recommendations out of which 68 outperformed the benchmark (68%)? While 70% is greater than 68%, achieving a 68% success rate over 100 recommendations is “statistically harder” than achieving 70% over 10.
· Which adviser has a higher excess return over the benchmark, one that gave 10 recommendations and outperformed the benchmark by 3.2% or one that gave 100 recommendations and outperformed the benchmark by ‘only’ 3%?
To measure the adviser performance against the benchmark, TipRanks calculates the Z-score the recommendation set given by each adviser and can thus compare an adviser with 10 recommendations to an adviser that gave 100 recommendations.
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