Sectors: Health Care & Pharmaceuticals
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Sectors: Health Care & Pharmaceuticals

In the pole position for a ninth consecutive year is Hidemaru Yamaguchi, 44.

Hidemaru Yamaguchi Citi

second team Ryoichi Urushihara Nomura

third team Fumiyoshi Sakai Credit Suisse

In the pole position for a ninth consecutive year is Hidemaru Yamaguchi, 44. Boosters continue to praise the Citi analyst’s long-­standing buy on BML, upgraded from hold way back in December 2007, at ¥1,639. The company conducts clinical trials for medical laboratories and hospitals, and Yamaguchi argued that it stood to gain from a steady pipeline of drug development. Through February 2010 the stock was up a very healthy 39.1 percent, to ¥2,280, and had outstripped the sector by a heart-­stopping 74.2 points. (For the 12 months through February, BML’s shares advanced 17.5 percent, while the index gained 5.2 percent.) “His views are always reliable and backed by massive amounts of data,” reflects one advocate.

Nomura’s Ryoichi Urushihara, who jumps from runner-up to second place, earns points for initiating coverage of Mitsu­bishi Tanabe Pharma Corp. with a buy in January 2009. The recommendation, largely based on the drugmaker’s successful rheumatoid arthritis treatment Remicade, was too early, critics charge; the stock slipped 30.2 percent by late April, after the voluntary recall of an ingredient used to make other treatments, but between April and the end of February, it rallied 41.6 percent. “He helps me understand this complex industry,” explains one defender.

At No. 3 for a third straight year is Fumiyoshi Sakai. In May the ­Credit ­Suisse analyst upgraded Sawai Pharmaceutical Co. from neutral to outperform at ¥4,650, partly on the generic-­drug producer’s well-­funded plans to expand capacity. Through February the shares catapulted 31.4 percent, to ¥6,110, beating the sector by 25.1 points. “He’s sharp on the fundamentals and always quick to respond to client demands,” asserts one ­constituent.


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