Europe’s Best Analysts of All Time

UBS, the leader of Institutional Investor’s 2015 All-Europe Research Team, is certainly no stranger to this particular winner’s circle. The Swiss financial services firm has topped the roster 17 times — nearly three times as often as HSBC, which is credited with the second-highest number of team victories, six. Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank have each earned the top spot three times, and Credit Suisse has led the lineup once.

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the ranking. To commemorate this milestone, we have aggregated the data from the past three decades to determine which firms and analysts have amassed the highest number of appearances. Not surprisingly, given the frequency with which it has led the team, UBS is the champion, with a total of 1,345 positions. BofA Merrill comes in second, with 784, followed by Credit Suisse, with 724.

To view the 30 winningest firms of the past 30 years, click on The Leaders 1986–2015. Please note: Each bank’s total includes positions won by predecessor firms absorbed through merger or acquisition. For example, UBS’s record incorporates that of S.G. Warburg; HSBC’s includes James Capel & Co.’s, and so on.

Among individuals, Patrick Wellington’s name has been published most often — 28 times — either as a solo analyst or as leader or co-leader of a crew. He debuted on the All-Europe Research Team in 1989, in third place in Electricals/Electronics on behalf of County NatWest Securities (now a part of the Royal Bank of Scotland). He topped that sector three years later, the first of eight first-place appearances to date. “He’s good at calling the stocks, and he knows how to sell a story,” one survey participant told II in 1992.

Since 2005, Wellington has led or co-led Morgan Stanley’s Media team, which claims second place this year. He is one of a dozen analysts named in the 2015 results who are also among the 30 analysts who have made the most appearances in the past 30 years. The others and the teams they currently oversee are:

* Andrew Crean of Autonomous Research, runner-up in Insurance;

* Richard Edwards of Citi, third place in Retailing/General;

* Alan Erskine of UBS, third place in Food Producers;

* Andrew Garthwaite of Credit Suisse, second place in Equity Strategy;

* Andrew Hughes of UBS, runner-up in Retailing/General;

* Jonathan Leinster of UBS, second place in Tobacco;

* Philip Middleton of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, third place in Specialty & Other Finance;

* Charles Mills of Credit Suisse, runner-up in Food Producers;

* Ian Shackleton of Nomura International, runner-up in Beverages;

* Andrew Stott of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, second place in Chemicals; and

* Andrew Wood of Sanford C. Bernstein, first place in both Food Producers and Household & Personal Care Products.

Click on Most Team Leader Appearances 1986–2015 to view the full list of analysts who have amassed at least 16 appearances to date.

Wood also holds the record for most first-place appearances. He debuted at No. 1 in Food Producers in 2004 and has captured the sector’s top spot every year since, with one exception: His squad slipped to second place in 2009. He has also ranked in Household & Personal Care Products, as either a solo analyst or team leader, every year since 2007 — and this year marks his sixth straight visit to the winner’s circle in that sector too. “He is the rare sell-sider who has conviction,” one money manager told II in 2010, the first time Wood topped both sectors simultaneously.

The Sanford C. Bernstein analyst is one of seven who have earned a spot in the record books for number of first-place appearances and add to their totals this year. The others and the teams they currently oversee are:

* Sarah Deans of Citi, Accounting & Valuation;

* Barry Dixon of Davy, Ireland;

* Timothy Jones of Deutsche Bank, Chemicals;

* Michael Jüngling of Morgan Stanley, Medical Technologies & Services;

* Andreas Neubauer of Deutsche Bank, Germany; and

* Max Warburton of Sanford C. Bernstein, Autos & Auto Parts.

Click on Most First-Place Team Leader Appearances 1986–2015 to view the full list of analysts who have amassed at least seven sector-topping appearances to date.

The All-Europe Research Team grew out of All-British Research Team, which II first published in January 1986.

James Capel & Co. earned the top spot on the inaugural roster; its analysts won places in 29 of the survey’s 37 categories that produced publishable results. Scrimgeour Vickers & Co. came in second, with 26 positions, followed by Phillips & Drew, with 19. Survey results were based on responses from buy-side analysts and investment professionals at some 200 leading U.K. money management organizations.

Interestingly, not a single sell-side firm that appeared on the first All-British Research Team exists today; all have been absorbed by much larger entities.

James Capel led the lineup for the first six years before being unseated by S.G. Warburg in 1992, the year the survey was expanded to include continental Europe and the formula changed from individual-based to reflect team-based coverage of the investment categories.

The current survey covers 45 sectors, which are grouped into three broad areas of coverage: Industries, Countries & Regions and Economics & Strategy. When the results of each category are viewed independently, UBS is No. 1 in Industries and shares the top spot with Deutsche Bank in Countries & Regions, while J.P. Morgan Cazenove claims first place in Economics & Strategy. The 2015 All-Europe Research Team reflects the opinions of more than 2,040 money managers at 775 institutions overseeing an estimated $6.2 trillion in European equities.