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J.P. Morgan Shuffles Its Research Ranks
Among the changes: Joyce Chang succeeds Thomas Schmidt as director of global research.
Joyce Chang, J.P. Morgan’s head of global fixed-income research and one of the most honored leaders in the history of Institutional Investor’s All-America Fixed-Income Research Team, has been promoted to director of global research. She replaces Thomas Schmidt, who earlier this year indicated his wish to pursue other opportunities, according to an internal memo obtained by II.
J.P. Morgan has been the top-ranked firm on the All-America Research Team, the All-America Fixed-Income Research Team and the All-Europe Fixed-Income Research Team for the past four years. Since 2011 it has scored the No. 2 spot on II’s Top Global Research Firm of the Year, behind Bank of America Merrill Lynch.
Chang’s promotion is one of several changes the firm is implementing in the weeks since Daniel Pinto was named sole chief executive of the corporate and investment bank. Noelle Grainger, former head of Americas equity research, has been tapped to direct global equity research, while Stephen Dulake is the firm’s new global head of credit research. Luis Oganes, who had been overseeing coverage of Latin American countries, will become global head of emerging-markets research.
From 1997 through 2012, Chang led or co-led teams that logged 28 appearances — including 25 visits to the winner’s circle — on the All-America Fixed-Income Research Team in such emerging-markets sectors as Sovereigns & Economics and Strategy. Only Laurie Goodman, formerly of UBS and Amherst Securities Group and now head of the Urban Institute’s Housing Finance Policy Center, achieved a higher number of first-place appearances on the team. Chang, who is based in New York, ties for third place in number of total appearances.
In addition, from 1996 through 2013 she led or co-led teams that ranked 14 times — and finished on top eight times — in the Currency Strategy and Sovereign Debt sectors on the Latin America Research Team, and in 2012 co-led the team that finished third in Fixed-Income Strategy on the Emerging Europe, the Middle East & Africa Research Team.
Before joining J.P. Morgan, Chang worked at Merrill Lynch, Salomon Brothers and the U.S. Agency for International Development in India, Jordan and the Philippines.
Although her background is steeped in emerging-markets and fixed-income investments, Chang has studied the equities space. “I have looked at equities from a cross-asset perspective when I was a fixed-income researcher,” she explains. “I will continue to focus on keeping all of the research groups at J.P. Morgan client-focused and business-aligned and committed to coming up with actionable ideas that help clients to achieve their goals.”
Chang notes that in November she worked with analysts across credit research challenging the conventional market wisdom that there would be a “great rotation” out of bonds into equities. “We examined structural changes in fixed-income asset classes in the aftermath of the global financial crisis as well as growing investor demand for fixed-income products,” she explains. The group’s predictions have borne out, she adds, with inflows returning to investment-grade bonds and fixed-income securities outperforming equities year to date amid concerns about the outlook for global growth.
Despite her new responsibilities, Chang doesn’t plan to give up writing. “I will publish on thematic research topics and will continue to meet with priority clients,” she says. “J.P. Morgan is committed to comprehensive research coverage and prides itself on its commitment to working with clients worldwide on the best investment ideas.”
This is the second time in as many months that a bulge-bracket firm has restructured its global research operations. In late March, Barclays promoted Jonathan Scoffin, former head of Asia-Pacific company coverage, to director of global equity research following Stuart Linde’s departure from the firm.