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BEST OF THE BROKERS

MORRISON
Barclays says Morrison has continued to take market share, has seen profit growth accelerate and has sharply increased its dividend. Yet it was the worst-performing stock in the sector during 2009. To some extent Morrison is seen as a “consensus Buy”, a worthy story but one which lacks triggers which might lead to a re-rating.

BARCLAYS
Deutsche Bank placed a “buy” recommendation on Barclays. It says Barclays’ results were three per cent better than forecast on an underlying basis, with better than expected impairments and stronger cost control in BarCap. This is likely to provide the market with greater confidence on the sustainability of earnings.

IG GROUP
Collins Stewart issued a “buy” recommendation for IG Group. IG is regarded as a risky business but Collins says that recent performance demonstrates risks have been managed well. Doubtful debt issues have been resolved with better systems and processes. Volatility risk is spread across many markets and mitigated by scale.