2015 All-America Research Team: Telecom Services, No. 3: David Barden
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2015 All-America Research Team: Telecom Services, No. 3: David Barden

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David Barden of Bank of America Merrill Lynch reclaims the No. 3 position.

< The 2015 All-America Research Team

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David Barden

Bank of America Merrill Lynch

First-place appearances: 0


Total appearances: 13


Analyst debut: 2004


After having slipped to runner-up last year, David Barden of Bank of America Merrill Lynch reclaims the No. 3 position. “David has very good financial analyses and models to back up his recommendations — better than most of his competitors,” one portfolio manager remarks. “He also has a good BS detector and a way of cutting through companies’ self-promotional scripts.” A contrarian, investors say, Barden is generally bullish on U.S. telecommunications services providers. He reports on 25 names in the space and contends that consensus thinking is skewed. “We believe valuations generally reflect greater fear regarding the future of the industry than we believe is warranted,” he says. “The subscription-based nature of the telecom industry makes it inherently stable, yet stocks tend to swing wildly on single data points, which creates opportunities both to buy and sell.” In addition, his optimism on the wireless sector is partly fueled by activity in another sector. “We expect that the market’s rising focus on the over-the-top cannibalization of linear TV profit streams will prompt investors to look for the coinciding beneficiaries,” explains Barden, 45. “The wireless industry is well-positioned to benefit — particularly AT&T and Verizon [Communications], which have the financial, content and network resources to monetize the mobile broadband video opportunity.”



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