Global Research

Awards & Recognition

  • #2 in All-Europe Research Team Survey
    Institutional Investor, 2012


BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research's expertise is at the core of the value proposition offered to clients and is an integral component of the product offerings in Global Wealth Management and Global Banking and Markets. Our analysts provide insightful, objective and decisive research that enables clients to make informed investment decisions. BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research achieves research excellence through the quality of its staff and the breadth and depth of its global resources.

BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research analysts provide anticipatory, innovative, and differentiated investment ideas, which address the needs of our investor clients. As one of the most respected research organizations in the world we have nearly 700 analysts focused on six main disciplines:

  • Equities employs over more than 600 analysts in 20 countries. Analysts conduct fundamental analysis on more than 3,400 companies globally, providing institutional and retail clients with industry-specific and in-depth research and analysis on more than 25 global industries.

  • Global Credit Research & GEM Fixed Income Strategy encompasses High Grade, High Yield, Credit Strategy, Credit Derivatives, Mortgages and other Structured Finance, Municipals, Indices, EM Credit Strategy and EM Corporate Credit Research. Our analysts provide in-depth capital structure analysis of companies and value-added investment ideas for today's Credit-driven financial markets.

  • Global Equity Strategy offers in-depth analysis of critical global issues, across disciplines, regions and asset classes, providing clients with investment ideas and macro overviews. Global Economics provides coverage of fiscal and monetary policy and economic news.. Our team at BofAML Global Research forecasts the key macroeconomic drivers for more than 60 economies, and offers in-depth, thematic research on issues such as the liquidity cycle, inflation and demographics.

  • Global Commodities encompasses Fundamental Strategy, Derivatives and Portfolio Strategy, Metals and Bulks.  The team provides forecasts and recommendations on over 20 commodities.

  • Global Rates and Currency encompasses, our Rates, Foreign Exchange and Portfolio and Risk Strategy. Our analysts provide coverage on over 40 currencies.

BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research Rankings

BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research has consistently achieved high rankings for its equity and fixed income research in numerous regional and global investor surveys, such as Institutional Investor, Financial Times/StarMine, Forbes/Zacks  and Thomson Reuters Extel.

Institutional Investor

  • Top Global Research Firm 2012 (awarded Dec '12)

  • #2 All-Europe Research Team Survey 2012 (awarded Feb '12)

  • #2 Pan European Equity Sector Coverage (awarded Feb '12)

  • #2 Emerging Market & Fixed Income Survey (awarded May '12)

  • #2 All-Japan Research Team Survey 2012 (awarded Mar '12)

  • #1 All-Asia Research Team Survey 2012 (awarded May '12)

  • #2 All-China Research Team Survey 2012 (awarded May '12)

  • #4 All-India Research Team Survey 2012 (awarded May '12)

  • #2 All-America Fixed Income Research Team Survey (awarded Sept. '12)

  • #3 All-America Fixed-Income Research Team Survey 2011 (awarded Sept '11)

  • #1 Top Global Research Firm of 2011 (awarded Dec '11)

Wall Street Journal

  • Ranked #2 in the 2012 annual "Best on the Street" analyst survey


  • Best Brokerage for stock picking and estimate accuracy, second consecutive year (June 2010)

Thomson Reuters Extel (June 2011)

  • Ranked #2 Pan-European firm for Equity and Equity-Linked Research (2nd consecutive yr)

  • Ranked #1 Pan-European firm for Equity Sectors Research (2nd consecutive year)

  • Ranked #1 Pan-European firm for Derivatives Research (2nd  consecutive year)

  • 7 Equity Analysts and 5 Equity teams ranked in overall top 25 leaderboard

Thomson Reuters Extel /UK Sustainable Investment and Finance (UKSIF) Survey

  • Ranked the #2 Leading Brokerage Firm for SRI & Sustainability overall ; #1 Leading Brokerage Firm for SRI Research;  #1 Firm for Individual SRI Individual Research; and #1 Firm for Renewable Energy Research. (September 2011)

Financial Times/StarMine

  • Ranked #2 Developed Europe Broker (May 2011)

  • Ranked #1 in Developed Europe for earnings forecasts, second consecutive year. (March 2011)

Emerging Markets Magazine

  • Ranked #1 for Global Emerging Markets Research and Latin America Research (September 2011)

Barron's Zacks +

  • Ranked #1 Stock Picker for 2H10

  • Ranked #3 Stock Picker for 2010

Capital Link

  • Best Research Team for Closed-End Funds in 2010 (May 2011)

Smith's Research & Gradings

  • No 1 Sell-Side Municipals Research (December 2010)

  • Best Contribution for Closed-End Fund Sector in 2011 (April 2012)

Products and Reports

Research analysts work together as collective and integrated regional teams to provide the highest value, alpha-generating research to our clients. This includes investment recommendations, organizing investor conferences, one-on-one meetings with institutional clients.  Analysts also help the Firm vet the quality of investment banking transactions for the Firm's investor clients. Analyst's research is also leveraged by the Firm to create commercially relevant products for our clients and effectively capitalize on opportunities within growing areas including the emerging and developed markets. Research analysts provide our clients with most/least preferred lists, equity and FICC indices, model portfolios, recommendations on individual securities, industry outlooks, market outlooks and forecasts and investment strategies

.A sampling of flagship reports includes:

  • Global Fund Managers Survey – a monthly report that canvasses the views of 300+ institutional, retail, and hedge fund managers around the world. The report provides unique information on consensus expectations for the economy and markets, as well as allocation for assets, regions, and sectors.

  • U.S. Economic Weekly – a weekly guidebook for the global investor, which discusses upcoming week's economic topics using proprietary weekly indicators, key economic indicators, debt issuance and policy speakers.

  • The Thundering Word – a weekly report that features the best thinking and trade ideas of our Global Macro Research team including investment strategies, themes and baskets.

  • The RIC Report – a monthly publication where analysts share their insights on markets and other information of value to investors. The RIC includes top strategists and economists from Macro Research. The RIC committee meets monthly to discuss and publish the RIC Report, which highlights significant investment themes and actionable ideas. The committee also provides tactical asset allocation and overall market commentary.


BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research provides research to individual investors and a wide variety of institutional money managers including: hedge funds, mutual funds, pension funds and sovereign wealth management funds. Additionally, analysts interact with venture capital funds, private equity funds, corporates and governments.

In an integrated bank such as BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research, our analysts also provide their expertise to multiple constituents. Internally, the Global Research department services multiple divisions within the organization.

BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research utilizes a variety of channels to ensure timely and effective dissemination of its research to clients.

BofAML Equity Research Rating System

The BofA Merrill Lynch Equity Rating System is designed to help investors improve their investment returns and provide transparency in analysts' recommendations.  Our rating system provides  differentiation among the equity ratings within a sector and closely aligns our rating distributions and historical stock performance. Many of our competitors provide clients with equity rating systems that are keyed to either: relative returns (in relation to an index such as the S&P500) or absolute expected investment returns. In contrast, our enhanced rating system it is designed to provide our clients with the best of both worlds. In essence, it is an absolute return system with a relative twist.

The BofA Merrill Lynch equity rating system combines two key features:

  • First, it provides enhanced transparency into analysts' views by providing greater differentiation among the equity ratings within a sector

  • Second, our ratings system was designed to help us achieve rating distributions that are more closely aligned with the historical performance  of stocks

The inclusion of Price Objectives for all stocks, as well as rating distribution guidelines within coverage clusters, means that effectively, analysts rank one stock relative to another within a coverage cluster.

"Underperform" stocks are expected to have either a negative total return or have a positive total return but be the least attractive stocks in a coverage cluster - we define coverage clusters as a group of stocks covered by one or more analysts sharing a common industry, sector, region or other classification.

This ratings system offers increased transparency and objectivity into our analyst convictions and recommendations - a unique system that is designed to fit the needs of all of our clients - long only, hedge funds, 130/30's and individual investors.

Equity Research Rating System

iQanalytics® Capabilities

BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research offers its institutional clients a resource for research data called iQanalytics. The group's iQ analytics capabilities include a defined valuation methodology that draws on over 3,300 company models prepared by its Fundamental Equity analysts globally, and a series of proprietary software tools. iQanalytics allows our BofA Merrill Lynch Research analysts and clients to select and compare financial metrics of companies under coverage across sectors and regions, including recent historical performance and forecast and valuation information.  IQanayltics® is a registered service mark of Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.

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