Jefferies announced today the hiring of Christopher LaFemina and Peter Ward as Senior Equity Research Analysts covering the global Metals and Mining sector, and Luke Folta as a Senior Equity Research Analyst covering the U.S. Steel industry, Steel Distribution and Specialty Metals. All are based in the firm’s New York office. “We are pleased to welcome Chris, Peter and Luke to Jefferies, as they are well-regarded industry professionals,” commented Steven R. Black, Global Head of Equity Research at Jefferies. “We believe their expertise, sector knowledge and relationships will strengthen our global Equities platform, and their hiring is demonstrative of our commitment to being one of the leaders in the international Metals and Mining sector.” Jefferies and its affiliates have more than 240 equity and fixed income research professionals in the U.S., Europe and Asia covering nearly 2,000 companies in the areas of aerospace & defense, clean technology, consumer, energy, financial services, gaming, lodging & leisure, healthcare, industrials, maritime, media & entertainment, real estate, technology, telecommunications and utilities. Mr. LaFemina, CFA, brings to Jefferies more than 10 years of equity research experience, and joins the firm from Barclays Capital, where he was a Managing Director and Senior Equity Research Analyst covering the European Metals and Mining sector. Earlier this year, he ranked as a Runner Up in the 2011 Institutional Investor analyst survey, and in the 2011 Financial Times / StarMine analyst survey ranked #1 in Earnings Estimate Accuracy for all sectors, and #1 Earnings Estimator for Metals and Mining. He was also ranked in the Extel analyst survey. He received an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Palmer Scholar, and a BS from Syracuse University. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst. Mr. Ward, CFA, brings to Jefferies more than 15 years of industry experience, and joins the firm from Barclays Capital, where he was a Managing Director and led the firm's Global Metals and Mining Equity Research. He has been ranked in the Institutional Investor analyst survey every year since 2001, and ranked #1 in the Metals and Mining sector and #2 in the U.S. overall in the 2010 Financial Times / StarMine analyst awards. He has also been named to The Wall Street Journal analyst survey multiple times. He received a MBA from The University of Rhode Island and a BA from Furman University. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst. Mr. Folta, CFA, joins Jefferies from Longbow Research, where he spent five years and was most recently a Senior Research Analyst covering the Steel and Specialty Metals sector. He received a BBA from Cleveland State University and is a Chartered Financial Analyst.