The following analyst(s), economist(s), and/or strategist(s) who is(are) primarily responsible for this report, certifies(y) that the opinion(s) on the subject security(ies) or issuer(s) and/or any other views or forecasts expressed herein accurately reflect their personal view(s) and that no part of their compensation was, is or will be directly or indirectly related to the specific recommendation(s) or views contained in this research report: Charanjit Singh.
Equities: Stock ratings and basis for financial analysis
HSBC believes that investors utilise various disciplines and investment horizons when making investment decisions, which depend largely on individual circumstances such as the investor's existing holdings, risk tolerance and other considerations.
Given these differences, HSBC has two principal aims in its equity research: 1) to identify long-term investment opportunities based on particular themes or ideas that may affect the future earnings or cash flows of companies on a 12 month time horizon; and 2) from time to time to identify short-term investment opportunities that are derived from fundamental, quantitative, technical or event-driven techniques on a 0-3 month time horizon and which may differ from our long-term investment rating.
HSBC has assigned ratings for its long-term investment opportunities as described below.
This report addresses only the long-term investment opportunities of the companies referred to in the report. As and when HSBC publishes a short-term trading idea the stocks to which these relate are identified on the website at www.hsbcnet.com/research. Details of these short-term investment opportunities can be found under the Reports section of this website.
HSBC believes an investor's decision to buy or sell a stock should depend on individual circumstances such as the investor's existing holdings and other considerations. Different securities firms use a variety of ratings terms as well as different rating systems to describe their recommendations. Investors should carefully read the definitions of the ratings used in each research report. In addition, because research reports contain more complete information concerning the analysts' views, investors should carefully read the entire research report and should not infer its contents from the rating. In any case, ratings should not be used or relied on in isolation as investment advice.
Rating definitions for long-term investment opportunities
HSBC assigns ratings to its stocks in this sector on the following basis:
For each stock we set a required rate of return calculated from the cost of equity for that stock’s domestic or, as appropriate, regional market established by our strategy team. The price target for a stock represents the value the analyst expects the stock to reach over our performance horizon. The performance horizon is 12 months. For a stock to be classified as Overweight, the potential return, which equals the percentage difference between the current share price and the target price, including the forecast dividend yield when indicated, must exceed the required return by at least 5 percentage points over the next 12 months (or 10 percentage points for a stock classified as Volatile*). For a stock to be classified as Underweight, the stock must be expected to underperform its required return by at least 5 percentage points over the next 12 months (or 10 percentage points for a stock classified as Volatile*). Stocks between these bands are classified as Neutral.
Our ratings are re-calibrated against these bands at the time of any 'material change' (initiation of coverage, change of volatility status or change in price target). Notwithstanding this, and although ratings are subject to ongoing management review, expected returns will be permitted to move outside the bands as a result of normal share price fluctuations without necessarily triggering a rating change.
*A stock will be classified as volatile if its historical volatility has exceeded 40%, if the stock has been listed for less than 12 months (unless it is in an industry or sector where volatility is low) or if the analyst expects significant volatility. However, stocks which we do not consider volatile may in fact also behave in such a way. Historical volatility is defined as the past month's average of the daily 365-day moving average volatilities. In order to avoid misleadingly frequent changes in rating, however, volatility has to move 2.5 percentage points past the 40% benchmark in either direction for a stock's status to change.
Rating distribution for long-term investment opportunities
As of 22 July 2013, the distribution of all ratings published is as follows:
Overweight (Buy) 46% (34% of these provided with Investment Banking Services)
Neutral (Hold) 37% (33% of these provided with Investment Banking Services)
Underweight (Sell) 17% (30% of these provided with Investment Banking Services)
HSBC and its affiliates will from time to time sell to and buy from customers the securities/instruments (including derivatives) of companies covered in HSBC Research on a principal or agency basis.
Analysts, economists, and strategists are paid in part by reference to the profitability of HSBC which includes investment banking revenues.
For disclosures in respect of any company mentioned in this report, please see the most recently published report on that company available at www.hsbcnet.com/research.
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1 This report is dated as at 22 July 2013.
2 All market data included in this report are dated as at close 21 July 2013, unless otherwise indicated in the report.
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* Legal entities as at 8 August 2012
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