What with monitoring market activity and economic data, meeting
with managements and kicking the tires, so to speak, at the
companies they cover, sell-side equity analysts dont have
as much time as they might like for direct interaction with
clients. That role often falls to the members of a firms
sales team, who promote the analysts research, arrange
meetings with corporate executives, coordinate road shows and
perform a thousand other tasks that fall under the general
heading of customer service.
A good institutional sales team understands research
from the clients perspective, one U.S.-based
participant in the 2011 All-America Research Team told
Institutional Investor. (We keep confidential the identities of
the survey respondents and their firms to ensure their
continuing cooperation.) The team has to have a good
understanding of our investment process and recommend research
that fits our style.
We asked this money manager and others who cast votes in
this years survey to tell us which firms field the best
teams when it comes to U.S. equity research sales. We heard
from investment professionals at roughly 90 percent of the
participating buy-side institutions; these firms control three
out of every four of the $12.7 trillion invested in U.S.
equities. (In the navigation table to the right, click on
Methodology for more information about how this ranking was
When it comes to sales, Morgan Stanley is the clear favorite
and takes the top spot on the inaugural
All-America Sales Team.
The team at Morgan Stanley has done an excellent job
of providing access to analysts in a timely fashion, says
one buy-side backer. They also provide value-added ideas
and trading color for the sector and the companies
that we cover.
A portfolio manager from China is similarly enthusiastic.
Morgan Stanleys U.S. sales team has the broadest
coverage and the most proactive attitude they tailor
their services not just for different clients, but even for
different individuals within the same client firm, this
survey participant says.
Nick Savone, who with Suzanne Charnas directs Morgan
Stanleys U.S. equity research sales efforts, notes that
clients are becoming increasingly global in their
approach as they need to consider the impact of macroeconomic
forces in their analysis. The firms analysts
collaborate across regions and investment disciplines to
deliver broad-based research to clients.