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Weekly Recommendation, Target Price, Earnings Forecast Changes

Reported by FN Arena
Monday, May 13, 2013
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Guide:

The FNArena database tabulates the views of eight major Australian and international stock brokers: BA-Merrill Lynch, CIMB, Citi, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan, Macquarie and UBS.

For the purpose of broker rating correlation, Outperform and Overweight ratings are grouped as Buy, Neutral is grouped with Hold and Underperform and Underweight are grouped as Sell to provide a Buy/Hold/Sell (B/H/S) ratio.

Ratings, consensus target price and forecast earnings tables are published at the bottom of this report.

Summary

Period: Monday May 06 to Friday May 10

Total Upgrades: 07 Total Downgrades: 20

Net Ratings Breakdown: Buy 40.26%; Hold 43.40%; Sell 16.33%

The latest quarterly run of reporting slowed a little last week. Financial, property and mining related sectors put out much of the information and were by far the most revised. Yet while miners and associated service providers have been very prominent over the past few weeks in terms of recommendation changes, it was a much slimmer majority than what's been seen over the last couple of weeks, with property and financials also featuring prominently.

 Upgrades

Ausdrill upgraded to Outperform from Neutral by CIMB. B/H/S: 4/2/1

Ausdrill's recent trading update provided CIMB with an opportunity to re-evaluate the stock. While sentiment remains poor and the operating environment is still challenging, the broker believes the company's exposure to production-based drilling and African operations positively differentiates it from other contractors. CIMB also thinks the market concerns around the balance sheet are overdone and is becoming increasingly comfortable about the cash generation profile of the business in a low-growth environment.

Boral upgraded to Neutral from Underweight by JP Morgan. B/H/S: 3/4/1

The broker noted Boral has started to have some serious issues with the weather after what was a fairly issue free 1H. The 3Q report unwound all of the good weather upside that was accumulated, with 3Q earnings falling $19m short of management's expectations. The FY net profit guidance was pegged at $90-$105m, although stripping out the chaff shows an underlying net profit of just $19m. That's how tough it is out there, said the broker. JP Morgan's FY13 net profit forecast was cut by 27%, with FY14-15 down around 10%. That being said, the broker still thought net profit will double in 2014 on the back of announced cost savings, the reversal of some one-offs and hopefully a still ongoing recovery in the US.

[See also Boral downgrade]

Coca Cola Amatil upgraded to Overweight from Neutral by JP Morgan. B/H/S: 2/2/4

The magnitude of the weakness in last week's trading update surprised JP Morgan. Contrary to many, the broker decided the resultant share price sell-off provided a good but in opportunity, although acknowledging the focus on the earnings downgrade and the potential for further downgrades near term. The broker said buying in at current levels provides benefit from a change in the market's focus from near term earnings to accelerating free cash flow and surplus capital. A recovery in earnings in the second half is also expected, although the broker's earnings forecasts were revised down 8.8% for 2013, 6.8% for 2014 and 5.5% for 2015.

Downer EDI upgraded to Outperform from Neutral by Credit Suisse. B/H/S: 7/1/0

The broker liked what it heard at the investor day for the most part, with FY13 looking to be on track. FY14 looks a little less certain, with net profit for that year trimmed by 3.5% given the end market focus on cutting costs. With shares in line with the sector and at a 34% discount to the market, plus offering a yield of 5.4%, CS felt confident in upgrading its call.

[See also Downer downgrade]

Fletcher Building upgrades to Outperform from Neutral by Credit Suisse. B/H/S: 4/2/2

The broker reported the share price decline in the wake of some cautious management commentary last week provided a good opportunity to increase stakes in the company. The broker admittedly lowered its forecasts post some channel checks, but despite the cuts, the broker confirmed FY14 earnings growth remains pegged at 10%, making the risk/reward look more compelling.

JB HiFi upgraded to Outperform from Neutral by CIMB.B/H/S: 2/3/3

The broker was upbeat about the profit guidance increase, especially the fact that sales were the driver. CIMB hopes the return of like for like sales growth will be just the thing to give investors some confidence in the business model and the consumer demand for the company's product mix. The new guidance saw the broker lift its EPS forecasts and the recommendation.

Sonic Healthcare upgraded to Buy from Hold by Deutsche Bank. B/H/S: 2/6/0

The broker said it sees value in the stock, especially after quite a long run of underperformance versus peers. Deutsche Bank still thinks FY13 guidance will be missed given funding cuts and a tough time in the US, double digit earnings should kick back on in FY14-15 as funding conditions stabilise. Yet the mid-term earnings prospects and the above mentioned valuation upside, especially to the new price target, pushed the recommendation higher.

Downgrades

Alumina downgraded to Underweight from Neutral by JP Morgan. B/H/S: 2/3/3

Alumina and aluminium prices have fallen 13% and 7% respectively from February's highs. As well, the Australian dollar remains over parity with the US dollar. The market is ascribing a significant improvement in long-term industry dynamics, but JP Morgan predicted sentiment towards the miners is likely to remain negative near term. On this basis the market will become increasingly less willing to price in an improved outlook for Alumina. Thus, after significantly outperforming the rest of the mining sector in the year to date, JP Morgan decided to downgrade the stock.

AP Eagers downgraded to Neutral from Outperform by CIMB.B/H/S: 0/1/0

The broker said AGM commentary supports the view that while new vehicle sales may still be solid, there is an increasing amount of free supply in the market and thus growing pressure to clear the stock. This has started to generate some visible margin pressure across the company's new car business, which for the present is being offset by steady performances from the company's used, parts and service businesses. Given the outlook for flat underlying earnings once the considerable property portfolio is stripped out, the broker thought it was time to downgrade.

Ardent Leisure downgraded to Neutral from Outperform by CIMB. B/H/S: 1/4/0

The quarterly was pretty much in line with the broker, with CIMB noting continuing strong trends across the Main Event and Health Clubs businesses. But while the Main Event, Health Clubs and Theme Parks businesses are doing well, Bowling remains a concern. With shares trading pretty close to the broker's target, the recommendation was downgraded, although CIMB does believe the 7.9% yield should be able to easily support the share price.

Boral downgraded to Neutral from Buy by BA-Merrill Lynch. B/H/S: 3/4/1

Boral has been cutting headcount costs, but has still failed to stem the fall in earnings in the wake of last week's trading update, noted the broker. The Australian market has quite simply disappointed against the broker's expectations hence the downgrade to Neutral, with earnings forecasts cut by 34% and 25% in FY13-14. An Underperform rating might have been on the cards but for the obvious housing recovery in the US and growth opportunities in Asian plasterboard, the broker pointed out.

[See also Boral upgrade]

CFS Retail Property Trust downgraded to Sell from Neutral by UBS.B/H/S: 2/2/4

The broker noted the company has reinstated its distribution reinvestment plan for the June 2013 distribution. Assuming a 25% take-up of the plan, UBS estimated the DRP would be around 0.5% dilutive to earnings and would reduce gearing by 100 basis points. The broker remains underweight on regional malls and thus downgraded CFS.

Coca Cola Amatil downgraded to Underperform from Neutral by CIMB and downgraded to Underperform from Buy by BA-Merrill Lynch. B/H/S: 2/2/4

Post the AGM, CIMB said earnings are about to turn quite a bit more volatile, especially in Australia, now that Pepsi's Project Zero is approaching completion. CIMB is also predicting further cash and non-cash charges, which could well lead to a de-rating. Seeing downside risk on both a relative and absolute basis, the recommendation was downgraded.

BA-Merrill Lynch said Coca-Cola Amatil's trading update didn't instill much confidence. The broker thought the reduction in Australian earnings could be sheeted home to more intense competition from Pepsi and increased competitiveness by major retailers. While the company blamed cyclical factors, the broker is worried the news may signal increased structural risk in the grocery industry. FY13-15 earnings forecasts were cut by 9.3%, 11.7% and 14.9%.

Downer EDI downgraded to Neutral from Outperform by Macquarie. B/H/S: 7/1/0

Following the Downer investor day, the broker reduced forecast earnings by 4% and 12% in FY13-14. Management has delivered well in the past 12 months, the broker noted, and revenues have grown at double-digit rates over the past 3 years. But the revenue profile begins to flatten into FY14. The broker dropped its target to $5.00 from $5.55 and at 9.8x FY13 forward earnings, Downer is not expensive, the broker suggested, but until there is more certainty around FY14 revenues, the multiple is very unlikely to expand.

[See also Downer upgrade]

ERM Power downgraded to Neutral from Outperform by Macquarie. B/H/S: 1/1/0

ERM Power updated investors at the Macquarie conference. The company's guidance range was extended to $69-$85m from $80-$85m, reflecting the potential timing around litigation arbitration on Neerabup. Macquarie lowered earnings forecasts for FY13 by 32%, to reflect the delay in arbitration outcomes. FY14 estimates were revised up 17% to reflect arbitration income.

Fairfax Media downgraded to Underweight from Neutral by JP Morgan. B/H/S: 2/2/4

JP Morgan confirmed current trading conditions remain difficult for Fairfax, while additional cost savings have been factored into estimates. The digital assets provide future growth opportunities, but excluding Domain and Stayz, the broker thinks the digital portfolio lacks strong growth.

Guildford Coal downgraded to Neutral from Buy by UBS.B/H/S: 0/1/0

Pre-mining activities at the South Gobi North pit are continuing and land permits have been granted. Despite confidence that progress is being made, UBS said there is risk of a cash squeeze should the start-up be pushed back, or ramp-up take longer than 12 months. The market is cool on companies that are not yet in production and the broker thinks Guildford is likely to trade at a discount to net present value until production commences and cash flow certainty arrives.

Invocare downgraded to Neutral from Overweight by JP Morgan. B/H/S: 1/4/1

The broker said the downgrade was due to the fact the stock has outperformed the Small Ordinaries by around 36% since the beginning of the year. JP Morgan was otherwise comfortable with the earnings outlook.

Lynas Corporation downgraded to Neutral from Overweight by JP Morgan. B/H/S: 1/3/0

The broker noted the Malaysian elections have delivered a government that should be favourable to Lynas. And while admittedly good news, it will also allow investors more time to take a closer look at the fundamentals of the business. This is especially the case with rare earths prices, which are definitely not great right now and already down 17% from the start of the year. The broker remains concerned by the direction of prices and thinks the shares have run hard enough for now.

Macquarie Atlas Roads downgraded to Neutral from Outperform by Macquarie. B/H/S: 1/4/1

The broker reviewed assumptions around the Eiffarie refinancing and revised down 2013 and 2014 earnings forecasts, reflecting higher fees. Macquarie finds the value of the stock is getting stretched. The recent rally has investors facing dividend downgrades in 2013 and 2014. Better dividend income is expected from the Eiffarie refinancing in 2015, thus patience is required. The currency represents the potential material change to the stock's valuation. Macquarie finds the underlying asset weak but steady, while the debt environment is at its most favourable.

NRW Holdings downgraded to Hold from Buy by Deutsche Bank. B/H/S: 4/2/1

It's not the company's fault, was probably the best way to summarise Deutsche Bank's decision to downgrade to Hold from Buy. The analysts acknowledged NRW Holding is well managed with a strong project delivery and execution track record. Alas, the company is also exposed to the slowing domestic iron ore sector and mining companies are focused on reducing costs, and they will continue to do so. Deutsche Bank predicts significant margin pressure will be the consequence. Earnings estimates for FY14 were also reined in.

Seek Holdings downgraded to Sell from Hold by Deutsche Bank. B/H/S: 1/3/4

Deutsche Bank thought said the stock has re-rated over the last half year on the back of a strong market position and diversified earnings. The current valuation is therefore viewed as stretched and there are no signs of recovery in the domestic business. Deutsche Bank's analysis highlighted the fact that Seek is expensive even under a best case scenario of 7% volume and 8% yield growth for the domestic business. The offshore business growth is expected to moderate due to the challenging macro economic conditions.

Seven Group Holdings downgraded to Neutral from Outperform by Macquarie. B/H/S: 3/2/0

Macquarie reviewed the outlook for Seven following the Seven West Media investor briefing. The broker thinks WesTrac will be affected by mining cut-backs in two ways. Firstly, there's new equipment sales. Secondly, there's a move to cut back on preventative maintenance. Earnings forecasts were reduced, but Macquarie continued to think WesTrac is a quality business with substantial medium-term opportunities.

Super Retail Group downgraded to Underperform from Neutral by CIMB. B/H/S: 1/2/4

It was another strong trading update, with sales and margins up. The company has also decided to clear the books with the GX cycles business, taking a $10m writedown, which the broker liked because it removes future losses. Yet after what has been a very strong run in the share price, the broker had to downgrade its call.

BA-Merrill Lynch downgraded to Sell a few days prior, the broker assuming Super Retail could deliver earnings growth in excess of 10% and self-fund all capex from cash while also paying down debt. There is little doubt this is being achieved and will continue to be achieved, but at a 50% premium to discretionary peers, the broker just cannot justify the share price.

WHK Group downgraded to Neutral from Buy by UBS. B/H/S: 0/2/0

SFG Australia withdrew its indicative, non-binding, scrip-based merger proposal. Another proposal may be considered when both parties are in a position to review FY13 earnings, thought UBS. The broker continues to see merit in the tie-up and finds limited opportunities for WHK Group to remain independent. UBS also continues to see risks around FY14 estimates, given the deterioration in discretionary accounting demand.

Worley Parsons downgraded to Sell from Hold by Deutsche Bank. B/H/S: 4/2/2

The broker had a look at its numbers and came to the conclusion that it will be tough for Worley Parsons to grow much over the next few years. Deutsche Bank pointed out the growth that is expected in the sector will be coming from markets to which the company has only limited exposure. As such, the broker only expects to see 4% annual EPS growth over the next three years. Seeing risks to consensus estimates and with the stock looking a bit pricey versus offshore peers, the broker downgraded its call, while cutting FY13 net profit by 2% and out years between 12%-15%.

Significant consensus target price and earnings forecast changes tabled below.  

Total Recommendations Recommendation Changes

 

Broker Recommendation Breakup Securities,Citi,Credit<*br*>Suisse,Deutsche<*br*>Bank,JP<*br*>Morgan,Macquarie,UBS&b0=94,154,85,88,90,78,117,90&h0=81,151,115,98,135,101,119,142&s0=67,25,40,47,17,50,38,29" style="border:1px solid #000000;" />

 

Broker Rating Order Company Old Rating New Rating Broker Upgrade 1 AUSDRILL LIMITED Neutral Buy CIMB Securities 2 BORAL LIMITED Sell Neutral JP Morgan 3 COCA-COLA AMATIL LIMITED Neutral Buy JP Morgan 4 DOWNER EDI LIMITED Neutral Buy Credit Suisse 5 FLETCHER BUILDING LIMITED Neutral Buy Credit Suisse 6 JB HI-FI LIMITED Neutral Buy CIMB Securities 7 SONIC HEALTHCARE LIMITED Neutral Buy Deutsche Bank Downgrade 8 ALUMINA LIMITED Neutral Sell JP Morgan 9 AP Eagers Limited Buy Neutral CIMB Securities 10 ARDENT LEISURE GROUP Buy Neutral CIMB Securities 11 BORAL LIMITED Buy Neutral BA-Merrill Lynch 12 CFS RETAIL PROPERTY TRUST Neutral Sell UBS 13 COCA-COLA AMATIL LIMITED Neutral Sell CIMB Securities 14 COCA-COLA AMATIL LIMITED Buy Sell BA-Merrill Lynch 15 DOWNER EDI LIMITED Buy Neutral Macquarie 16 ERM POWER LIMITED Buy Neutral Macquarie 17 FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED Neutral Sell JP Morgan 18 GUILDFORD COAL LIMITED (GUF) Buy Neutral UBS 19 INVOCARE LIMITED Buy Neutral JP Morgan 20 LYNAS CORPORATION LIMITED Buy Neutral JP Morgan 21 MACQUARIE ATLAS ROADS GROUP Buy Neutral Macquarie 22 NRW HOLDINGS LIMITED Buy Neutral Deutsche Bank 23 SEEK LIMITED Buy Sell Deutsche Bank 24 SEVEN GROUP HOLDINGS LIMITED Buy Neutral Macquarie 25 SUPER RETAIL GROUP LIMITED Buy Sell CIMB Securities 26 WHK GROUP LIMITED Neutral Neutral UBS 27 WORLEYPARSONS LIMITED Neutral Sell Deutsche Bank   Recommendation Positive Change Covered by > 2 Brokers Order Symbol Previous Rating New Rating Change Recs 1 CLO 67.0% 100.0% 33.0% 3 2 JBH - 38.0% - 13.0% 25.0% 8 3 ALQ - 29.0% - 13.0% 16.0% 8 4 MQG 14.0% 29.0% 15.0% 7 5 ASL 29.0% 43.0% 14.0% 7 6 AZJ 50.0% 63.0% 13.0% 8 7 AGO 50.0% 63.0% 13.0% 8 8 ORI 75.0% 88.0% 13.0% 8 9 AIO 63.0% 75.0% 12.0% 8 10 FBU 13.0% 25.0% 12.0% 8 Negative Change Covered by > 2 Brokers Order Symbol Previous Rating New Rating Change Recs 1 SUL 14.0% - 43.0% - 57.0% 7 2 CCL 13.0% - 25.0% - 38.0% 8 3 ALS - 33.0% - 67.0% - 34.0% 3 4 SDM 67.0% 33.0% - 34.0% 3 5 SEK - 13.0% - 38.0% - 25.0% 8 6 LYC 50.0% 25.0% - 25.0% 4 7 NWH 67.0% 43.0% - 24.0% 7 8 SVW 80.0% 60.0% - 20.0% 5 9 AAD 40.0% 20.0% - 20.0% 5 10 GBG - 20.0% - 40.0% - 20.0% 5   Target Price Positive Change Covered by > 2 Brokers Order Symbol Previous Target New Target Change Recs 1 JBH 12.669 14.773 16.61% 8 2 MQG 36.880 41.437 12.36% 7 3 SUL 11.014 11.569 5.04% 7 4 ALQ 10.027 10.333 3.05% 8 5 AAD 1.520 1.562 2.76% 5 6 SHL 13.561 13.861 2.21% 8 7 CLO 1.373 1.403 2.18% 3 8 FXJ 0.586 0.598 2.05% 8 9 IPL 3.296 3.333 1.12% 8 10 AZJ 4.337 4.381 1.01% 8 Negative Change Covered by > 2 Brokers Order Symbol Previous Target New Target Change Recs 1 GBG 0.244 0.202 - 17.21% 5 2 SDM 1.170 0.970 - 17.09% 3 3 DML 1.125 0.933 - 17.07% 3 4 CCL 14.394 13.183 - 8.41% 8 5 LYC 0.798 0.735 - 7.89% 4 6 SVW 12.546 11.564 - 7.83% 5 7 ASL 2.650 2.464 - 7.02% 7 8 NWH 2.458 2.314 - 5.86% 7 9 ORI 27.651 26.680 - 3.51% 8 10 WOR 26.668 26.185 - 1.81% 8   Earning Forecast Positive Change Covered by > 2 Brokers Order Symbol Previous EF New EF Change Recs 1 FBU 34.978 37.105 6.08% 8 2 FLT 217.325 229.513 5.61% 8 3 MQG 297.400 309.429 4.04% 7 4 CTX 158.686 164.957 3.95% 7 5 JBH 112.710 116.900 3.72% 8 6 FXJ 7.038 7.200 2.30% 8 7 CLO 10.433 10.667 2.24% 3 8 WBC 219.738 223.750 1.83% 8 9 ILU 21.399 21.749 1.64% 8 10 MGR 10.777 10.920 1.33% 6 Negative Change Covered by > 2 Brokers Order Symbol Previous EF New EF Change Recs 1 MAH 1.200 - 0.050 - 104.17% 4 2 SGM 22.757 7.157 - 68.55% 7 3 BLD 14.766 11.368 - 23.01% 8 4 DLS 37.033 29.525 - 20.27% 4 5 AAX 37.620 31.400 - 16.53% 5 6 QAN  

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20/12/2014 07:57Sydney, Australia. 20 December,2014
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