Best of the Brokers for 06 January 2015

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Jefferies has upgraded its rating to “buy” from “hold”, and said that, while fundamentals appear robust for the mid-term, “regulatory bottlenecks appear to be the biggest risk factor to growth”. The broker stated that it expects Hikma “to be a momentum story for 2015”. Target price is 2,325p.

Societe Generale changed its rating to “hold” from “buy”, citing strong recovery in the share price since November. The broker also noted “very strong gross margin recovery” within general merchandise due to supply chain gains, lower promotional spend and lower mark-downs.

Panmure Gordon reiterated its “sell” rating, after the company’s third quarter statement which highlighted a number of potential actions that could impact 2014 profitability “together with a reminder if needed that the trading environment remains particularly competitive”.