Industries: Agribusiness - First

Fernando Ferreira & team BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research

The buy side says: “He’s the hardest-working analyst out there.”

Fernando Ferreira guides the BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research duo from runner-up to first; he also co-leads the No. 2 team in Food & Beverages. The New York–based analyst “has the most thorough understanding of the sector,” insists one backer. In June 2009 the team upgraded the American depositary receipts of São Paulo’s sugar and ethanol producer Cosan from neutral to buy, at $5.52, largely on Brazil’s short sugar supply and the growing global demand for ethanol; they have highlighted the call repeatedly since. The stock roared to $12.33 through July 2011, a jaw-dropping 123.4 percent gain that pummeled the sector by 84.4 percentage points. Ferreira, 28, joined Merrill Lynch after earning a BA in business administration at Brazil’s Fundação Getulio Vargas in 2005.