Best of the Brokers for 15 October 2013

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Bank of America Merrill Lynch raised its target price from 1460p to 1900p and changed its rating from “underperform” to “buy” in a double upgrade that sent shares up nearly five per cent yesterday. The broker believes the builders’ merchant is poised to benefit from the increase in housing transactions.

Investec has moved from a “hold” to a “sell” recommendation on Diageo and cut its price target from 1900p to 1865p. In a note entitled “trouble in paradise”, the broker cites concerns over slowing emerging market and potential implications following Unilever’s recent profit warning.

The company behind Primark joined UBS’s “Key Call” list, with the Swiss banker arguing that its “buy” rating unchanged target price of 2030p offers “significant upside, especially if management accelerate the roll-out of stores in Europe”by acquiring other retailers’ underperforming stores.