BEST OF THE BROKERS

JD WETHERSPOON
JP Morgan Cazenove rates the pub chain “underweight” and has raised its target price from 381p to 390p. The broker has trimmed its like-for-like sales growth for 2012, from two per cent down to one per cent, following half-year results earlier this month that showed a sales dip. However, JP Morgan’s earnings per share forecast of 38.7p has been raised to reflect a share buyback and a longer financial year.

ANTOFAGASTA
Exane BNP Paribas rates the miner “outperform” and has a target price of £14.50. The broker thinks the recent departure of chief executive Marcelo Awad “should not affect group strategy”, with a major expansion still on course to provide “massive, low cost growth potential” in Chile. The firm’s volume growth this year should offset rising costs, the broker added, leaving the company in line for strong earnings growth from 2013 onward.

LEGAL & GENERAL
Deutsche Bank rates the insurer “buy” with a target price of 155p. The broker was pleasantly surprised by the firm’s full year results last week, with better margins across its UK life business and a 35 per cent rise in dividend payouts. Deutsche has lifted its 2013 forecasts by 10 per cent on the back of the strong figures, and now expects operating profits to stay broadly flat at £1.17bn next year.