Best of the Brokers for 20 July 2015

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Numis reiterated its “add” rating on the retailer, noting that the group posted strong underlying profit growth during 2015, “a period of significant corporate change” as the broker described it. Numis added that the merger process continues to run smoothly and said: “We remain positive.”

Canaccord Genuity reiterated its “buy” rating on the estate agents, following a report from the Council of Mortgage Lenders which showed a jump in mortgage lending in June. The broker said it expects UK estate agents “to be having an active July”. Target price is unchanged at 264p.

Edison Investment Research initiated coverage of the oil explorer and said there is a core upside to the share price with exploration ongoing. The broker said the value of the company “should expand in time” and added that the firm “has the financial strength to withstand near-term oil price weakness”.