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Industry – Autos & Auto Parts: Second

Euisup (Andy) Lee, Bin Wang & team
Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Climbing from third place to second is the six-strong Bank of America Merrill Lynch squad. Co-captained this year by Euisup (Andy) Lee, who works out of Seoul, and Hong Kong–based Bin Wang, who replaces Arun Subrahmanyam, the analysts follow 30 stocks; Lee also co-heads, with Xiang (Edmond) Huang, the top-ranked team in Industrials. “They know all the players, which is really key in the auto industry, where so much hinges on the launch of a new model,” explains one buy-side supporter. The crew is positive on South Korea–based auto and auto-parts manufacturers, including Hyundai Mobis, Lee reports, “because their competitiveness has improved structurally.” Conversely, the researchers are bearish on such China-based automakers as Great Wall Motor Co. and Geely Automobile Holdings because of inventory backlogs and pressure from global joint ventures, among other factors. “They will suffer from weak margins owing to the risk of lower prices and high fixed costs per unit on reduced capacity utilization,” he says. — Paul Sweeney

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