Best of the Brokers for 25 June 2014

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UBS has downgraded Aviva to “neutral” from “buy”, also cutting the target price to 524p from 570p. The broker believes that Aviva is no longer the compelling restructuring that a premium valuation deserves, with structurally lower reserve growth in its life insurance business.

Jefferies has a “buy” rating on the pharma firm and a target of 4,303p. The broker thinks Shire’s new targets are tough but achievable, though it believes the company has a long way to go before the market sees it as a biotech play. Jefferies expects AbbVie to make a bid by the 18 July deadline.

WH Ireland has retained its “buy” rating for the industrial equipemnt hire firm, while raising the target price to 599p from 550p. The broker believes that the firm is poised to benefit from the increasing requirement for energy security from users in the UK and overseas.