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Goldman sends LSE shares down despite praise for CEO

The FTSE 100 was all about the power of the analyst today, with a number of individual movers spurred up or down by words of wisdom from the City&rsquo;s finest.<br /><br />The <strong>London Stock Exchange</strong> (LSE) shed 2.2 per cent to close at 914p after Goldman Sachs cut its rating on the stock to &ldquo;neutral&rdquo; on valuation grounds, and removed it from its pan-European &ldquo;conviction buy&rdquo; list.<br /><br />The bank said that the shares have gained 26 per cent since 2 June, when it upgraded the company to &ldquo;buy&rdquo;, and are now trading close its 12-month target price of 1,000p.<br /><br />&ldquo;In the few months since becoming chief executive, Xavier Rolet has shown a clear understanding of challenges &ndash; and opportunities &ndash; faced by LSE,&rdquo; it added.<br /><br /><strong>Tesco</strong> jumped up by 2.3 per cent to 392.45 after Nomura analysts raised their price target on the world&rsquo;s third-biggest retailer, saying that it would double in the next five year thanks to its banking expansion.<br /><br />Positive broker comment also aided real estate issues, with BofA Merrill Lynch upgrading its rating on<strong> Hammerson</strong> to &ldquo;buy&rdquo; and <strong>Land Securities</strong> to &ldquo;neutral&rdquo;. Shares in the firms rose 0.6 per cent and 2.1 per cent respectively. The same broker also boosted plumbing supplies group <strong>Wolseley</strong> with an upgrade to &ldquo;buy&rdquo;, which helped send its shares up 2.9 per cent.<br /><br />The FTSE 100 closed 0.3 per cent, or 14.45 points, higher at 5,257.85, lifted by forecast-beating results from US banks Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo. <br /><br />Banks rebounded on better investor sentiment around the results.<strong> HSBC</strong> rose 1.3 per cent, whil<strong>e Lloyds Banking Group, Standard Chartered </strong>and <strong>Barclays</strong> put on 0.2 to 1.6 per cent.<br /><br />Banks had suffered earlier in the day from a call by Bank of England governor Mervyn King for fundamental banking reform and as higher earnings from Deutsche Bank failed to meet expectations.<br /><br />Sterling hit a one-month high against the dollar on Wednesday, adding to broad gains after traders took BofE meeting minutes to suggest that an extension of quantitative easing next month was less likely. <br /><br />Pharmaceutical stocks, perceived as defensive, were under pressure from a rising appetite for risk driven by the latest round of positive US earnings news.<br /><br /><strong>GlaxoSmithKline</strong> fell one per cent, while <strong>AstraZeneca</strong> shed 0.4 per cent.<br /><br />Miners were mixed, amid a touch of profit taking on a sector, which surged 26.5 per cent in the last quarter.<br /><br /><strong>Lonmin, Fresnillo, Anglo American </strong>and<strong> BHP Billiton</strong> dropped between 0.1 and 1.8 per cent.<br /><br />BHP Billiton reported near flat quarterly output of iron ore, placing it deeper in the shadow of rival Rio Tinto. <br /><br /><strong>BAE Systems, BSkyB </strong>and<strong> Smiths Group </strong>fell after trading ex-dividend.<br /><br />The FTSE 100 has surged about 52 percent from a six-year trough in March, though is still about 3 percent below its level in mid-September 2008 before the collapse of Lehman Brothers.<br />