• Gallagher covered insurers including MetLife at Credit Suisse
  • Altman says investment bank is focused on recruiting talent

Evercore Partners Inc., the merger-advisory firm founded by Roger Altman, hired Tom Gallagher to expand the firm’s equity-research operation.

Gallagher joins from Credit Suisse Group AG, where he was an analyst covering life insurers, including MetLife Inc. Evercore announced his hiring in a statement Wednesday that reported first-quarter results.

Evercore boosted its focus on research with the acquisition of International Strategy and Investment Group two years ago. Mark Finkelstein, who had covered life insurance companies at New York-based Evercore, left in 2014 to become head of investor relations at Prudential Financial Inc.

Gallagher “broadens our equity research capabilities,” Altman, executive chairman, said in the statement. “We will continue to assure we have the best resources in the market to address clients’ needs by recruiting or promoting talented individuals, expanding and deepening our advisory capabilities and broadening and deepening our research coverage.”

Before leaving Credit Suisse, Gallagher was recommending that investors buy shares of MetLife, the largest U.S. life insurer. MetLife has slipped 3.1 percent this year through Tuesday. That compares with the 11 percent drop at Lincoln National Corp., which was rated underperform by Gallagher. Azar Boehm, a spokesman for Zurich-based Credit Suisse, declined to comment.

Evercore has been growing by adding staff from larger Wall Street rivals. Wednesday’s statement also highlighted the recent additions of Dan Ward, previously of Deutsche Bank AG, for energy deals and Barclays Plc’s Jim Renwick for European expansion. Those additions were previously reported.

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