BEST of the BROKERS

GDF SUEZ
UBS rates the energy group “buy” and has a 12-month price target of €23. The broker thinks GDF’s bid for the remainder of London-listed peer International Power has come earlier than expected, although the offer itself is hardly surprising. UBS reckons the offer price of 390p per share is likely to rise, and is assuming a final price of 420p, coupled with around €3bn in additional asset sales.

EASYJET
Morgan Stanley has an “overweight” rating on the airline and has raised its target price from 510p to 560p following an update from the firm. The broker has also lifted its full year pre-tax profit forecast by nine per cent to £260m, and expects to see EasyJet and Ryanair pick up market share as weaker competitors are hit by the soaring cost of fuel. Morgan Stanley has forecast five per cent passenger growth for EasyJet this year.

CRANSWICK
Numis rates the pork products group “add” with a target price of 904p. The broker is happy with the firm’s 12.9 per cent sales growth in the second half of the year, though notes the figures were flattered somewhat by a quiet comparative period. It has also pared back its margin forecasts for the coming year to 5.9 per cent, and expects to see the firm seek out acquisitions funded by its strong balance sheet.