BEST OF THE BROKERS

BALFOUR BEATTY
UBS said it saw solid first-half performance in the construction firm, with pre-tax profit 13 per cent ahead of expectations. But the broker warned investors of cyclical issues, in particular its exposure to public sector projects in the UK leading up to the government spending review in October. UBS maintains its “buy” recommendation.

CINEWORLD
JP Morgan heralded the success of 3D films at the cinema chain, which contributed to strong admissions and a 2.4 per cent rise in advertising revenue in the first half of the year. Earnings for the period were largely in line. The broker upped its full-year forecasts and maintained an “overweight” rating.

JOHNSTON PRESS
Deutsche Bank has forecast a seven per cent drop in underlying ad revenues at the media group, ahead of its half-year results on Wednesday. It expects the firm to report persistently weak circulation trends, with the added pressure of exceptional charges worth £2m. The broker reiterated its “hold” rating, with a target price of 33p.