Veteran Bank Analyst Rabatin joins Hovde Group as DOR


Chicago, IL based investment bank and broker-dealer, Hovde Group, recently announced that it has named Brett Rabatin, CFA as Managing Director and Head of Research for the financial services focused boutique.  Rabatin is replacing long-time Hovde DOR, Joe Fenech.

Hovde’s Newest Hire

Following a career of more than 20 years as a sell-side analyst and financial services valuation consultant, Brett Rabatin, CFA recently joined Hovde Group as Managing Director and Head of Research.  Brett also maintains research coverage of regional and community banks across the US.  Mr. Rabatin replaces long-time Hovde DOR, Joe Fenech who will depart the firm on September 30, 2020.

Prior to joining Hovde, Mr. Rabatin spent almost five years as senior equity research analyst with Piper Jaffray covering bank stocks.  Previously Brett spent more than six years at Sterne Agee growing their bank coverage, and more than eight years at FTN Midwest as senior equity research bank analyst.  Earlier in his career, Rabatin, spent a year at JC Bradford as an associate analyst and more than two years at Mercer Capital focused on valuation-related matters for privately held banks and thrifts. 

Mr. Rabatin was recognized as the number-one stock picker in The Wall Street Journal’s Best on The Street survey for banks and thrifts in 2002, and recognized as number two overall, all sectors, in 2003 in Forbes and StarMine. He was also the number-one earnings estimator in 2013 and number two in 2004 and 2011 within the bank/thrift sector. Brett received a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of Memphis, and is a CFA Charter Holder.

Kirk Hovde, Managing Principal & Head of Investment Banking, commented on Rabatin’s hiring,  “We’ve known Brett for many years and have followed his research product closely. As Hovde has continued to look to build out its practice, we’ve had numerous discussions with Brett about him joining the team. With Joe Fenech’s departure, we were confident that Brett was the perfect fit to continue to expand our research capabilities and coverage universe.  Over the past few weeks, we’ve been working diligently to ensure our coverage universe would not be disrupted as we transition names from Joe Fenech to Brett, Kevin and Will.”

Our Take

Founded in 1987, Hovde Group is a boutique investment bank focused exclusively on the financial services sector, providing a full suite of investment banking, capital markets, research, equity sales and trading services for institutional and high net worth clients.  The firm started providing equity research coverage in 2014, and currently covers 77 small and mid-cap US regional and community bank stocks with three senior publishing analysts.

The replacement of former Director of Research Joe Fenech with an experienced and highly regarded sell-side bank analyst like Brett Rabatin, makes considerable sense and is a great hire for Hovde.  The question we have is whether Hovde plans to expand its research coverage in the coming years, a move that would require it to add to its equity research team?  However, if history is any guide, we doubt that Hovde will be terribly aggressive in growing its research platform, particularly in such a difficult market environment for sell-side research.


About Author

Mike Mayhew is one of the leading experts on the investment research industry. In addition to founding Integrity Research, Mike is on the board of directors of Investorside Research Association, the non-profit trade association for the independent research industry, and a frequent speaker on research industry trends and developments. Mike has over thirty years of research industry experience. Email:

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