The 2014 Latin America Research Team: Sovereign Debt, No. 2: Luis Oganes & team

Luis Oganes & team J.P. Morgan First-place appearances: 15

Total appearances: 25

Team debut: 1993 J.P. Morgan claims the No. 2 spot on this lineup for a second year running, despite a change to its Sovereign Debt team’s leadership. The 14-member crew is now shepherded by Luis Oganes, who was named global head of emerging-markets research in April, when longtime leader Joyce Chang was promoted to direct the firm’s global research efforts. Oganes also heads a runner-up team in Economics, and he plans to relocate from New York to London in August. “Luis and his team are the only [ones] that offer robust detailed analysis of emerging-markets sovereign debt issuers on a global basis,” marvels one portfolio manager. “His team is always available, and the firm organizes well-timed research trips to respective regions.” Headquartered in Mexico City, Miami, New York and São Paulo, the sovereign strategists contend that Brazil’s October elections are a key focus for investors in Latin America, as the results “will dictate how near-term policy inconsistencies will be managed and shape the outlook on medium-term fiscal sustainability” for the region’s largest economy, explains Oganes. In the local markets he and his colleagues favor Brazilian and Colombian government bonds. Among sovereign external debt issuers, they continue to recommend that clients overweight Venezuela, thanks to favorable valuations relative to other high-yield debtors like Argentina and Ukraine that trade at tighter spreads. “Oganes’s team is flawless, as much as a team can be,” cheers another backer. “The analysts are diligent and timely, conveying the public information and what they can make of it, all the while mapping it to the macroeconomic cycle.”