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The 2013 All-America Research Team: Pharmaceuticals/Specialty, No. 2: Gregory Gilbert

Gregory Gilbert of Bank of America Merrill Lynch holds second place for a fifth straight year.

Gregory Gilbert
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
First-place appearances: 2

Total appearances: 13

Team debut: 2001

Gregory Gilbert of Bank of America Merrill Lynch holds second place for a fifth straight year. According to one pleased fan, the analyst’s “grasp of key fundamentals across specialty and major pharmaceuticals makes him invaluable.” Gilbert is bullish on this sector because he deems valuations compelling and sees the potential for M&A activity to heat up. He initiated coverage of Ireland’s Jazz Pharmaceuticals in February with a buy rating, at $56.03, citing the company’s “high growth, durable assets and favorable tax structure.” In addition, Jazz’s narcolepsy therapy Xyrem and leukemia treatment Erwinaze should drive “strong sales and earnings-per-share growth over the next several years,” he noted. Gilbert has reiterated his position repeatedly, most recently at the end of May, with the shares up 21.3 percent, to $67.97. A positive meeting with management had convinced the analyst that EPS and valuation targets were too low, “based on somewhat less-conservative volume-growth assumptions for Xyrem and potential accretion from the recently announced $200 million share-buyback program,” he reported. Three months later the stock had climbed 29 percent further, to $87.69. — Leslie Kramer

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