Best of the Brokers

UBS has raised its target price on the housebuilder from 210p to 250p and maintained its “buy” recommendation after first half results in line with expectations. The broker expects further margin improvements as profit and loss contributions from recent land acquisitions increases, and expects the group to be debt free by 2015. UBS also said the 35 per cent year-on-year increase in its private order book bodes well for the second half.

Panmure Gordon has maintained its “sell” rating on the cinema group but upped its target price to 238p from 229p, after reducing its underlying 2013-14 forecasts in light of a cautious outlook on the cinema market. The broker says Cineworld’s enterprise value to Ebitda ratio of 7.4 times is too rich given its short and medium-term outlook, and makes modest downgrades of 0.3 per cent to its 2013 earnings per share forecast.

Merchant Securities has initiated coverage of the oil appraisal and development company with a “buy” rating and a target price of 167.8p. The firm holds 100 per cent of the undeveloped Bentley oil field in the North Sea, where reservoir risks have been reduced by extensive testing and a lengthy production test, which coupled with its geological characteristics gives Merchant extra confidence in its production estimates.