Best of the Brokers

Numis upgraded the takeaway pizza business to “buy” from “add” and keeps its target of 625p, believing the company is likely to generate strong growth in 2013. Numis expects to see new developments, such as a gluten free menu and higher ecommerce advertising, greater expansion with new stores in the UK and the rest of Europe and higher margins.

Liberum Capital lowered the price target on the outsourcing company by 50p to 600p, but reiterated its “buy” recommendation, labelling it “an expensive defensive” with potential opportunities. The prison market in particular has given Liberum’s analysts cause for optimism. However, a gloomy picture in the US has prompted Liberum to trim its forecasts for 2012 and 2013 by two and five per cent respectively.

Panmure Gordon raised its price target for the online retailer by 175p to 3,050p and reiterates a “buy” recommendation, in spite of downbeat consumer confidence and a lacklustre Christmas performance in the retail sector. While Asos is expected to outperform the market again this year, Panmure looks to today’s trading update from Next for signs of how the rest of the high street has fared over the festive period.