The 2014 All-China Research Team: Metals & Mining, No. 1: Yanlin (Matty) Zhao
Yanlin (Matty) ZhaoMacquarie Capital SecuritiesFirst-Place Appearances: 1
Total Appearances: 2
Analyst Debut: 2013Macquarie Capital Securities’ Yanlin (Matty) Zhao advances from second place to claim top honors on this roster for the first time; she also makes her debut appearance on the Basic Materials lineup, at runner-up. “Matty has the best corporate access and has made many correct calls,” one fund manager offers. From her base in Hong Kong, Zhao monitors 21 Chinese metals and mining companies. Of this group, Angang Steel Co. of Anshan is a preferred name. She boosted the steel producer from sell to neutral in May, at HK$4.62, citing its improving product mix and margin expansion. Some nine weeks later, after the stock had jumped 15.6 percent, besting its peers by 4.1 percentage points, she noted that decling iron-ore prices would help drive performance and elevated Angang to buy. The share price rose and fell over the following months, finally settling at HK$5.23 in late November. Its decline of 2.1 since her July elevation was still better than the sector’s 7.4 percent loss. Going forward, the analyst prefers Anhui Conch Cement Co., China’s biggest cement maker, which is based in Wuhu and holds significant exposure to limestone mining. The company is enjoying growing demand, she notes, especially from the construction industry. At HK$34, her price objective for Anhui Conch implies a 38.8 percent upside to the stock’s value in late November. Zhao, 32, covered this sector for Nomura before joining Macquarie in October 2011. She previously worked in the advisory business at China Resources Capital Management and the London office of KMPG. She holds a bachelor’s degree in law from Beijing’s Renmin University of China and a master’s in the same subject from the London School of Economics and Political Science. “Matty stands out from the rest with best-on-the-Street research and unerring responsiveness,” insists another fan.