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Dozens of public companies are ignored by analysts — including firms that employ analysts

Key Points
  • Thirty-five publicly traded stocks are ignored by sell-side analysts, CNBC found.
  • No analysts cover Piper Jaffray, a firm that employs dozens of research analysts itself.
  • CEO Andrew Duff says not having an analyst can hurt a company by making it less attractive to investors.
Under the radar stocks: Why aren't they covered?

When looking for objective insights and data on a given company, business leaders and investors — not to mention journalists — will often turn to professional analysts for guidance.

But not every company is monitored by analysts. In fact, 35 public companies with market capitalizations above $500 million go completely ignored by market analysts, CNBC found.

These stocks also outperform large swaths of the market: The neglected stocks rose 32 percent over the past year on average, compared with the Nasdaq index's growth of 23 percent.

And who analyzes the analysts? In Piper Jaffray's case, the answer is no one.

The investment bank and asset management firm employs nearly 1,300 people, of whom 37 are dedicated research analysts covering a hefty handful of industry sectors. But not a single analyst from another firm covers Piper Jaffray.

CEO Andrew Duff lamented that the firm has likely been ignored by analysts because of its relatively low trading volume.

"I'm pretty certain it's a negative," Duff said on CNBC's "Power Lunch " Friday. "I think it limits the number of investors. Typically an institutional investor is going to want to see someone's independent model and expectations on earnings. Number two, I think they consider it quite valuable to get an objective opinion on how a company is performing in its industry relative to its peers and competitors."

"So the lack of that I do really think has an impact on investor interest," he said.

Piper Jaffray has a market capitalization of $907 million.