Best of the Brokers

Seymour Pierce has downgraded the FTSE 100 professional services company from “buy” to “hold” saying “there was not enough new information at the investor day presentation to warrant an increase in our target price”. The broker added that it was “ disappointed to hear international expansion does not feature greatly in the company’s plan”. The target price has been cut to 770p.

Panmure Gordon maintained its “buy” rating on the global online fashion store, after shares increased by 83 per cent in the year to date – outperforming the FTSE All Share Index by 76.6 per cent. The broker added: “We continue to see in Asos shares a unique opportunity for investors to get involved in a global consumer growth and operating leverage story.” The price target increased to 2530p from 2378p.

UBS maintained its “neutral” rating for the industrial materials supplier saying “we suspect Cookson is suffering from widespread price erosion across its ceramics operations, which has further pressured profitability”. A target price of 550p was set, down from 600p. The broker cut its 2012 earnings per share forecast by 10 per cent. UBS said: “ We doubt a demerger or economic recovery offers material upside to our valuation.”