Makoto Ueno Daiwa Institute
second team Satoru Kikuchi Deutsche
third team Masaharu Miyachi Morgan Stanley
runners-up Masato Araki Mitsubishi UFJ; Jun Hasebe Daiwa Institute
Zooming from third place to celebrate his first appearance in the winner’s circle is Makoto Ueno, who is “not the sort of analyst who only wants to talk about next quarter’s numbers,” says one client. Ueno, 43, joined Daiwa Institute of Research in 1990 after earning a bachelor’s degree in management at Aoyama Gakuin University. In October he urged investors to buy NEC Fielding, at ¥893, because of the software developer’s strong growth prospects. The stock had sizzled up to ¥1,150 by the end of February, gaining 28.8 percent at a time when the sector slipped 6.0 percent. Satoru Kikuchi, who moved from Nomura Securities Co. to Deutsche Securities last April, drops one notch to second place but continues to impress buy-siders with his “extensive knowledge” and “accurate earnings estimates.” Kikuchi acknowledges that most of his stock picks last year failed to meet expectations, although one — a June buy on mobile phone software maker NTT Data Corp., on strong earnings — did outperform the broadmarket by 4.9 percentage points, through February. Masaharu Miyachi of Morgan Stanley Japan rises from runner-up to third. Miyachi reiterated his sell call on CSK Holdings Corp. in February 2008, at ¥2,815, on concerns about the IT services provider’s financial sector subsidiaries. The stock plunged to ¥664 in November, and Miyachi upgraded it to hold, on valuation. But the upgrade was premature: CSK’s share price tumbled to ¥175 through February.