Espirito Santo advises investors to “buy” WH Smith ahead of the interim results on Thursday. It forecasts profit before tax up 4.5 per cent to £69m, though high street like-for-like sales are expected to fall five per cent. It predicts a smooth handover from outgoing boss Kate Swann to Steve Clarke with little change in strategy, and the bank’s view is that WH Smith has plenty of levers left to pull to mitigate structural pressures.
DAILY MAIL AND GENERAL TRUST
Morgan Stanley has raised its target price for Daily Mail & General Trust (DMGT) from 545p to 800p, and maintained its “equal-weight” rating. The change reflects continued good growth in digital, which the firm has reinvested in further expansion. The broker praises successful moves away from consumer print and an imminent improvement in profits from its B2B unit following a string of disposals.
EURASIAN NATURAL RESOURCES CORPORATION
UBS has upgraded ENRC to a “buy” rating from “neutral”, keeping its target price at 320p. Investors should look at recent price weakness as a buying opportunity, UBS believes, given early signs of progress on restructuring, organic volume growth, and improvement in the chrome market. The broker thinks M&A speculation could limit further downside risk.