Investors Increase Focus on Washington

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Usage of policy research, which provides investors insights on pending legislation, has increased over the last year, according to a new study by Integrity Research Associates

Policy research, which investors use to track trends in Washington, has increased in scope and popularity, according to a study released by Integrity Research Associates, a specialist research firm covering the investment research industry.

In the latest edition of Integrity ResearchFocus® reports which review key segments of the investment research industry, Integrity estimates that spending on independent research firms specializing in policy research topped $120 million in 2009, as more than 30% of the investors surveyed reported increased usage over the last year. "Policy research is one of the hottest sectors of the research industry right now," said Michael Mayhew, Integrity’s chairman and co-author of the study.

Investor interest has spawned an increasing number of investment research firms offering insights into government. Integrity's latest report covers 41 policy research firms and 17 firms which specialize in political intelligence, or timely information on the latest governmental developments. "Lobbying firms and law firms are setting up political intelligence units to answer specific questions that investors have about pending legislation," said Nathan Bragg, research analyst and co-author. "Political intelligence firms are similar to expert networks, another popular form of research, because if the investors ask the right questions they can get very valuable answers."

For the report, Integrity surveyed 357 hedge fund and long only investors, including 102 users of policy research in North America and the U.K. The results show that policy research is well-entrenched with professional investors, with over 35% reporting usage and, among users, only 14% finding little or no value in the research.

Survey respondents cited the Obama Administration and the credit crisis as the primary reasons for their increased reliance on policy research. Investors primarily use policy research either as a risk overlay to their investments or as a source of investment ideas.

Based on user feedback, Integrity selected its 2010 Top Picks for Policy Research in two categories: Legislative/Regulatory Analysis and Political Risk. Integrity reviewed policy research in two additional categories, Monetary Policy and Other Policy Research, but did not award 'Top Picks' to any of the providers.

The 116-page Integrity ResearchFocus® report contains an overview of the policy research segment including the results of Integrity's survey, comparative analysis of the different policy research firms, the 2010 Top Picks for Policy Research, and profiles of each of the 58 policy research and political intelligence firms identified in the review. The report is used as a “buyers guide” for investment professionals and other users of policy research. For additional information go to http://www.integrity-research.com/policyresearch/ or contact Matthew Bannister at 646.786.6851.

About Integrity Research
Integrity Research Associates, LLC is an information and solutions provider specializing in the investment research industry. Its institutional investor clients use Integrity’s services to find new research providers and monitor existing ones. Integrity ResearchSelect® provides confidential, customized searches tailored to investors’ requirements. Integrity covers over 3,000 research firms in the U.S., Europe and Asia.

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