As managing director in Equity Research at Barclays, Karen Short attributes her success to a philosophy that has driven her entire career: “I base every decision that I make on opening doors, not closing them; taking the harder route, which defines character in anyone.” This guiding principle has culminated in a burgeoning client base and the coveted position of #1 Staples Retail Analyst by Institutional Investor—a ringing endorsement of the value she provides her clients.
Karen provides in-depth research coverage to institutional clients supported by stock-specific and sector analysis, with a critical focus on financial modeling and communications with industry contacts. Responsible for verticals with a cumulative market cap in excess of $1 trillion, her coverage universe includes Walmart, Costco, Target, Home Depot, Lowe’s, and Best Buy, among others.
She serves her clients with an analytical mind, stock-picking skills gained over a 20-year career, and the conviction to always do what’s best for them—even if that means going against popular opinion. In September 2016, her top pick was Walmart, which 80 percent of analysts were not recommending. It has since almost doubled. “Different analysts have different approaches as far as what the focus should be. We don’t all have same priorities,” Karen explains. “But at the end of the day, the client cares about our stock-picking abilities.”
Throughout her life, Karen has always chosen the path that offered the greatest challenges that would broaden her skills and deepen her knowledge. She graduated from Queen’s University with a bachelor’s in economics and began her career as a gas and power trader, moving up to a senior position. Rather than ride her upward trajectory, she left to pursue her MBA at Columbia Business School, where she graduated with honors. “The vast majority of my classmates had been in finance. I literally didn’t know what a balance sheet was, and basically all I do is analyze financial statements now,” Karen shares.
Her drive to constantly challenge herself has resulted in myriad industry awards, including #2 and #3 Retail Analyst rankings from Institutional Investor for 2014, 2015, 2017, and 2018, with her life’s motto guiding the way: “Never take the easy way out and always look for career decisions that open doors, not close doors.”
Managing Director, Equity Research — Barclays
745 Seventh Avenue, 17th Floor
New York, NY 10019