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Economics & Strategy - Equity Strategy - First Team

Reclaiming the top spot after a year in second place is Bank of America Merrill Lynch strategist Masatoshi Kikuchi

Masatoshi Kikuchi Bank of America Merrill Lynch

The buy side says: “Kikuchi can somehow find a connection to anyone.”

Reclaiming the top spot after a year in second place is Bank of America Merrill Lynch strategist Masatoshi Kikuchi, whom one portfolio manager lauds for his “good sense of the direction and speed of market sentiment. This gives him an amazing ability to produce data and investment ideas that many investors are just starting to think about.” Kikuchi, 49, is advising clients to “remain bullish until the middle of this year, and to increase the weight of economic-­sensitive sectors” such as financial services and technology. Key issues to watch, he notes, are whether Japan will resume nuclear-­power generation in the wake of the ­Fukushima Daiichi disaster and whether Prime Minister ­Yoshihiko Noda will call a snap election to break a deadlock in Parliament over a proposal to double the nation’s consumption tax, to 10 percent, by 2015.  — Carolyn Koo

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