After a year as a managing director at Furman Selz, Katharine Rossow is leaving for the bank where she first got her start in fixed-income coverage.
On Monday, Ms. Rossow, 46, will become vice president of corporate bond research at Chase Securities, a division covering high-grade sales, research, and trading. She will cover the debt of the top 50 banks in the United States and the top 50 banks internationally. She will also follow credit card banks.
"Chase made me an offer I couldn't refuse. It will more international and I have always had a love for international banking," said Ms. Rossow.
Ms. Rossow will replace Jean I. Sievert, who left Chase three months ago to become vice president of corporate bond research at Salomon Brothers. Ms. Rossow will report to Michael Zarrilli, the managing director of the division.
Ms. Rossow said one reason for her interest in foreign banks is the higher yield on their bonds.
As for the domestic bank market, she said her mission would be to identify the companies that will fare best when market conditions worsen.
"The challenge is to be on the right side when bond spreads start to widen. In other words, stay with the higher quality banks, the ones that are more stable," Ms. Rossow said.
Ms. Rossow cut her teeth in fixed-income coverage in Chase's credit training program in 1978 and later advanced to lending officer, concentrating on Italian banks.
In 1986, she left Chase to become a senior analyst at Moody's to rate debt issues of the nation's largest banks during what she describes as "scary times."
Because of the precarious state of banks, some people thought analysts should avoid giving low ratings, because they thought that might panic the markets, said Ms. Rossow.
In spite of the pressure, "we never changed them," she said. "We were sensitive to the concern, but it would have been irresponsible if we'd done anything else."
Ms. Rossow left Moody's in 1992 for Salomon Brothers where she stayed on three years as vice president of corporate bond research.
She went to Fulman Selz in 1995 to become managing director of fixed- income securities because she "wanted to see what it was like to be a big frog in a little pond."
Ms. Rossow said that she sees her career coming full circle. "I was very happy at Chase before and now I'm happy to be going home."