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
Life and Style
love + sex
Life and Style
Tikka Masala has been overtaken by Jalfrezi as the nation's most popular curry
food + drink
News
people
Voices
A propaganda video shows Isis forces near Tikrit
voicesAdam Walker: The Koran has violent passages, but it also has others that explicitly tells us how to interpret them
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
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

Ashdown Group: Graduate Application Support Analyst

£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: A global leader operating...

Reach Volunteering: External Finance Trustee Needed!

Voluntary post, reasonable expenses reimbursed: Reach Volunteering: Would you ...

Christine McCleave: FP&A Analyst

£36,000 - £40,000: Christine McCleave: Are you looking for a new opportunity a...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £40,000

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn