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The 2014 All-Russia Research Team: Corporate Debt, No. 1: Mikhail Galkin

Mikhail Galkin
VTB Capital
First-Place Appearances: 2

Total Appearances: 9

Analyst Debut: 2006

VTB Capital’s Mikhail Galkin repeats in first place on this roster. Tracking 20 Russian companies — primarily in the agriculture, consumer, telecommunications, transportation and utilities sectors — the 35-year-old researcher wins praise for his skill in “providing local color and access to local info that other analysts gloss over,” as one portfolio manager says. In April, with the Crimean crisis involving Russia and the Ukraine in full bloom, Galkin advised clients to “switch out of shorter and/or high-cash-price Russian bonds into lower-price bonds,” he reports. Eurobond securities issued by several of the country’s major oil producers are among the more-favorable tranches he cites, including Moscow-based Gazprom’s 4.95 percent notes due 2028 and Rosneft’s 4.199 percent bond maturing in 2022, as well as St. Petersburg–based Gazprom Neft’s 4.375 percent credit due 2022. Through May each had appreciated by at least 10 percent, outperforming the rest of the Russian corporate Eurobond universe. “Mikhail stays on top of even the less widely covered credits,” comments one manager, “and gives timely responses to questions, which is not easy given the huge time difference between us.” Going forward, Galkin recommends that, until domestic economic growth improves, investors should favor exporters over companies that address local markets, such as those in the banking, consumer and transportation sectors. “He differentiates his research with in-depth insider knowledge, timely alerts and well-reasoned opinions,” adds a third supporter.

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