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Analyzing the Analysts: The Effects of Technical and Social Skills on Analyst Performance and Careers

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Document pages: 53 pages

Abstract: This paper investigates the effects of financial analysts’ technical and social skills on their performance and career advancement. Using financial analysts’ LinkedIn profiles, we find that analysts with strong technical skills endorsed by LinkedIn connections generate more accurate earnings forecasts and more profitable stock recommendations. Analysts with better social skills, proxied by the number of LinkedIn connections, have better communications with corporate management during conference calls and also produce more accurate earnings forecasts. Their stock recommendations are not more profitable but receive stronger market reactions. Further, these sociable analysts are more likely to be voted as All-Star Analysts and to move to high-status brokerage firms when they change jobs. These findings provide the first large-sample evidence on the different roles of technical and social skills in the financial industry.

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