Steven East & team Credit Suisse
second team Céline Fornaro BofA Merrill Lynch
third team Benjamin Fidler & team Deutsche
The Credit Suisse duo led by Steven East, 38, reclaims the top spot after spending last year in second place. Praised by one client for being knowledgeable and good on the details, the team upgraded French aerospace-equipment manufacturer Safran from neutral to outperform in August, at 10.85, on strong earnings growth. The stock had shot up to 12.89 by mid-September, a gain of 18.8 percent that bested the sector by 5.8 percentage points, and the analysts downgraded it to neutral, on valuation.
The shares ended the year at 13.69. Newcomer Céline Fornaro, who takes BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research from third place to second, was the first to highlight EADSs potential ahead of the bounce, recalls one money manager. Fornaro issued a counterconsensus upgrade of European Aeronautic Defense and Space Co. from underperform to buy in July, as undervalued at 11.53. The Netherlands-based multinational aircraft manufacturers shares had catapulted to 16.40 by mid-September before receding to 14.09 by the end of December.
Rising from runner-up to third place is the Deutsche Bank duo captained by Benjamin Fidler. Investors cheer a July upgrade from hold to buy on British aircraft instrument provider Meggitt, at 164.93p, based in part on the analysts belief that its balance sheet was stronger than widely perceived. Through December the stock skyrocketed 57.6 percent, to 260p. Bens insightful analyses and good corporate contacts are very useful, notes one buy-sider.
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