Best of the Brokers

Espirito Santo rates the logistics firm “sell” with a fair value of 70p. The broker has cut its earnings per share forecasts by around 13 per cent for the next two years, based on a downbeat update from the firm. Espirito Santo is worried about the group’s high and rising levels of debt, and is also sceptical about the benefits of a faster than planned asset sale under the new executive chairman.

UBS rates the commodities giant “buy” and has a target of 440p. With Glencore’s merger with Xstrata due to complete shortly, the broker thinks the enlarged firm will be less risky and enjoy strong earning momentum, aided by capital discipline and synergies. UBS also believes that management will be entrepreneurial given their equity stakes.

Seymour Pierce has a “sell” rating on the retailer and a target of 200p. Mothercare “is not an easy fix”, the broker believes, warning that the brand may never regain its relevance for modern mothers and noting that competition from online rivals is fierce. The administration of the firm’s Australian arm also acts as a cautionary tale for firms with overseas partners, it adds.