QOTD: Mike Mayo on Sell-Side Cheerleaders

Mike Mayo, the notoriously curmudgeonly bank analyst that called bullshit on his coverage universe as they loaded up on debt has a book coming out called Exile on Wall Street.

As part of any respectable book publicity campaign, Mayo has done the WSJ op-ed thing and it’s published on their site this morning in the form of an excerpt.

In it, he takes his fellow sell-side analysts to task:

Analysts are supposed to be a check on the financial system—people who can wade through a company’s financials and tell investors what’s really going on. There are about 5,000 so-called sell-side analysts, about 5% of whom track the financial sector, serving as watchdogs over U.S. companies with combined market value of more than $15 trillion.

Unfortunately, some are little more than cheerleaders—afraid of rocking the boat at their firms, afraid of alienating the companies they cover and drawing the wrath of their superiors. The proportion of sell ratings on Wall Street remains under 5%, even today, despite the fact that any first-year MBA student can tell you that 95% of the stocks cannot be winners.


Why Wall Street Can’t Handle the Truth (WSJ)

Buy Exile on Wall Street on Amazon here:

Exile on Wall Street: One Analyst’s Fight to Save the Big Banks from Themselves



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