Warburg hangs on to research crown

MAGNUS GRIMOND

SG Warburg has retained its crown as the City's top-rated research house for the fifth year running, but its recent troubles have clearly taken their toll.

Its margin of victory over second-rated NatWest Securities in the widely- regarded Extel survey of investment analysts has narrowed to less than 1 per cent and NatWest has established a clear lead in pure UK equity research.

The findings, published yesterday, also show Barclays de Zoete Wedd knocked from third to fourth position by James Capel, the broker that dominated the table throughout the 1980s, and Morgan Stanley, Warburg's jilted suitor in last year's takeover talks, creeping up into 10th place from the number 11 spot.

Otherwise the super league of analysts shows no change in the overall rankings of the City's top 10 investment houses, although votes for the top five continue to cluster ever closer together. The gap separating Warburg, which won 12.45 per cent of the votes cast last year, and fifth- ranked Kleinwort Benson at only 2.39 per cent, is less than half the 5.89 per cent margin between top and fifth places two years ago.

Geoffrey Osmint, consulting editor of the survey, forecast continuing shrinkage in the industry. Pointing out that the number of institutions using just five to 10 brokers had gone up from 38 to 46 per cent last year, he predicted a situation in which large-scale research becomes centred on five broadly-based houses and around six niche players.

NatWest reinforced its strong position by sweeping up the top accolades for both the best individual analyst and the best research team. Steve Plag, who covers pharmaceuticals, healthcare and household goods for the broker, moved up from ninth place to knock his colleague, the oil analyst Fergus MacLeod, into the number two spot after being voted most highly rated individual. Mr MacLeod and his team - followers of the integrated oil sector - had the consolation of taking the best team prize for the second year running.

Simon Flowers, another of NatWest's integrated oil team, took third place among individual analysts, with Jamie Stevenson of Kleinwort Benson's building team fourth.

Julia Blake and her colleagues who look at the textiles sector shot from fifth to second slot, with NatWest's oil exploration and production team, also led by Fergus MacLeod, in third place.

Mr Plag, 38, said: "We don't write pots of maintenance research here. We just look for value-added ideas. We have tried to break the mould a bit and I'm dead chuffed."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Voices
Homeless Veterans charity auction: Cook with Angela Hartnett and Neil Borthwick at Merchants Tavern
charity appeal
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Boxer Amir Khan will travel to Pakistan in bid to 'make a difference' in the wake of army school massacre
Arts and Entertainment
Strictly finalists Simon Webbe, Caroline Flack, Mark Wright and Frankie Bridge
tvLive: Simon Webbe, Caroline Flack, Mark Wright and Frankie Bridge face-off in the final
Sport
Ched Evans in action for Sheffield United in 2012
footballRonnie Moore says 'he's served his time and the boy wants to play football'
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Carlton Senior Appointments: Private Banking Manager - Intl Bank - Los Angeles

$200 - $350 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: Managing Producer – Office...

Carlton Senior Appointments: San Fran - Investment Advisor – Ind Advisory Firm

$125 - $225 per annum: Carlton Senior Appointments: San Fran - Investment Advi...

Sheridan Maine: Commercial Finance Manager

Up to £70,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...

Sheridan Maine: Regulatory Reporting Accountant

Up to £65,000 per annum + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a qualified accoun...

Day In a Page

Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture