How do you learn your coverage?

Student here who will be interning at a bank in NYC this summer. Just trying to learn the ropes...
I have always been curious how y'all learn your coverage area at the analyst level. We all know that MDs are industry experts because of the years of experience and relationships they have, etc. 
At the analyst level, however, what are you guys doing to learn your coverage/vertical as much as possible? (Assuming that you like the coverage group that you are in).
Aside from reading equity research, keeping up with the news, and going through the motions of the job, is there anything extra you do to make sure you are developing a differentiated expertise in your industry i.e. software, o&g, semis, or MedTech?
This is probably a silly question to ask as analysts maybe are not expected to develop any sort of expertise but I was just wondering if there is anyone out there that makes an effort to learn their coverage. 


It's the things you named - keeping up with news/research, and really reps

Realistically analysts don't spend much time poring over industry news or reading equity research for their own knowledge (mostly skimming to get quotes or take forecast numbers).

The reps are really what does it - make a few benchmarking pages and you'll notice that company X has way lower margins than the peers, or Company Z trades way higher and then your VP will ask you to figure out why. I wouldn't worry about it, it's an experience thing. Seek out news / company investor presentations or investor days before you start, but it'll just come with time


in addition to keep up with sector newsflow (finding industry specific websites / newsletters is helpful), getting reps in the hard skills is useful as well. knowing your way around Excel, ppt, outlook, etc. prior to your internship puts you ahead of your peers

Go all the way
Most Helpful


I was asking this question a year ago and the only answer i got was pretty much “read the news for the industry you’re interviewing for/working in”.
Have you gotten your hands on the WSP Red Book? There’s a dedicated section of interview questions for certain sectors such as TMT, HC, SaaS, FIG, C&R, financial RX, RE, REPE, and O&G. Each vertical has around 10-13 pages worth of questions. I was able to learn more about the coverage i was interested in by learning from the answer key.

You already mentioned about the equity research readily available online.

Another resource i’d suggest is : the s&p global sector primer series. Google it and you’ll find a couple primers for certain industries.

Best of luck and have fun studying :)


Thanks for your response! I do have access to the WSP red book so I will make sure to go through the SaaS section (I'm really into software). I did not know about S&P primer series so I will make sure to check those out as well.


A lot of reading, basically anything I can get my hands on. Equity research, consultant reports, industry-specific news sites and textbooks (to get more technical on the underlying technology). What has really brought me to the next level has been podcasts and audiobooks, probably listen to 3-4 hrs per day while doing admin / gym / chores etc. Over a year that really compounds. Fortunate enough that for this vertical there's plenty of transparency and desire to educate outsiders about it - you could listen to CEOs, CTOs and consultants all day long.

This is just for a niche vertical within my coverage group and the vertical itself is developing fast enough that I can tell it's poorly understood within my group. Honestly, that motivates me to push harder to learn it since I know it will be a differentiator.


I appreciate the response! It is cool to see that you are making an effort to develop that differentiation, I bet it's an interesting coverage area, best of luck!


That's an interesting option, will check to see if there are any on software, thanks!


A lot of great points here already, having sat in a number of meetings the big differentiator here that makes an MD worth their salt is listening to the c-suite of their client and BoD discuss their problems, competitive landscape, opportunities, etc. in meetings. They get real, genuine details about their industry coverage and companies vs. what can be found in an equity research coverage report and that equips them to better understand how they can be helpful to their clients. As someone else noted, this simply comes from reps of sitting in these meetings and listening to their clients. 


Thanks for sharing your perspective. Looking forward to scheduling and sitting in on those meetings


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