Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Portfolio

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Portfolio

Article excerpt

BUY

SHIRE

Citigroup has flagged the UK's thirdlargest pharmaceuticals firm, Shire, a buy. The recommendation comes despite the bank's report that Shire's Fosrenol drug has been challenged by generic products. While Shire is likely to sue for patent infringement, the risk of competition from generics is still due to kick in during June 2011.

But Citi believes growth will still be driven by continuing expansion in international markets and US approval of key drugs this year.

Analysts remain confident that Shire will repo rt comfortable 2008 earnings and have set a target price of 1200p. Today shares in Shire added 5p to 1005p.

SELL

XSTRATA

Citigroup has reduced its recommendation on Xstrata, Europe's largest zinc producer, to sell from hold, reflecting the economic slowdown and the fall in commodity prices. The Swiss-based miner was recently given permission to expand one of its Australian lead and zinc projects. Analysts at Citigroup nonetheless note that across the mining sector demand remains weak and surpluses are expected to continue to grow for at least the next two years. …

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