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Hidehiko Hoshino held the No. 2 spot for the past five years; this year he climbs one rung to claim top honors for the first time since 2003.
Hidehiko Hoshino UBS
second team Katsushi Saito Nomura
third team Hirosuke Tai Daiwa Institute
Hidehiko Hoshino held the No. 2 spot for the past five years; this year he climbs one rung to claim top honors for the first time since 2003. Money managers praise the UBS analyst for his original ideas and feeling for stock prices. Hoshino, 44, downgraded toolmaker Makita Corp. to neutral in October, at ¥1,925, on earnings pressure. By late February the stock price had inched up just 1.9 percent, to ¥1,961. After five years at No. 1, Katsushi Saito of Nomura Securities Co. slips to second place. Saito downgraded the sector to neutral in February 2008, anticipating softening demand and a strengthening yen. He was right: The Topix machinery index plunged 45.1 percent through February 2009 and trailed the broad market by 3.9 percentage points. He questions the conventional thinking, observes one buy-side supporter. In third place for a second straight year is Daiwa Institute of Researchs Hirosuke Tai, who is also ranked second in Plant Engineering & Shipbuilding. He provides timely calls on turning points, attests one backer. Tai downgraded air-conditioner producer Daikin Industries to neutral in August, at ¥4,010, on the belief that rising steel prices would hurt profits. Sure enough, by late February the share price had cooled to ¥2,170.
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