BEST OF THE BROKERS

MITIE
UBS rates the outsourcing group “buy” with a target price of 290p, up from 280p following better than expected results. The broker is impressed by the firm’s confident outlook, noting its significant order wins that have driven its order book, and thinks Mitie will benefit from cost saving drives in both the public and private sectors. UBS expects the firm’s revenues to pass £2bn next year.

CENTRICA
Investec rates the energy group “buy” with a target price of 423p. The broker approves of Centrica’s recent supply deal with Norway’s Statoil, adding that it underpins the firm’s position in both upstream and downstream. Investec adds that despite political concerns over high fuel prices, it believes that the price hikes are justified and the negative impact is already factored into the share price.

HSBC
Evolution Securities rates the bank “sell” with a target price of 600p. Evo reckons a recent call with management over its Asia-Pacific merely confirmed its fears over sluggish growth and falling margins. The broker prefers Standard Chartered (“neutral” rating), which it sees as more defensive and capable of maintaining double-digit revenue growth over the next two years.