Banks in firing line after Saga analysts give low price targets

 
Michael Bow
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SAGA shareholders were left scratching their heads yesterday after the bank that helped sell shares to them at 185p six weeks ago said they were worth 177p.

UBS, which was one of several banks that brought the group to market, started covering the stock with a 177p price tag, more than three per cent below the price bankers had helped float the group at earlier this year.

Goldman Sachs, which co-led the deal, also started coverage with a tepid outlook for the company, giving it a “neutral” rating and a price target of 192p.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch – joint co-ordinator on the deal – was more bullish and said the stock was worth 200p.

Saga’s initial public offering has come in for criticism after dropping below its 185p issue price. The stock closed yesterday at 177p.

Bank analysts who generate price targets are independent of investment bankers working on the deal, which could lead to price discrepancies. However, analysts are used to inform the potential value of firms hoping to list.

UBS declined to comment.

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