Level 2

JPMorgan upgrades Countryside Properties after reassuring update

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Thursday 18 Apr 2019

(Sharecast News) - JPMorgan Cazenove upped its stance on Countryside Properties to 'neutral' from 'underweight' on Thursday following the stock's year-to-date underperformance and a reassuring update on the earnings outlook a day earlier.
JPM said that following 17% underperformance versus the sector year to date, the stock is now more fairly valued.

"Following yesterday's reconfirmation of full year guidance, and commentary that sales rates have improved through Q2, we also see less scope for a repeat of 2018's consensus earnings cuts," it said.

JPM kept its 375p price target on the shares, noting 12% upside potential.

Countryside said on Wednesday that it had enjoyed "solid" trading in the first half and that it was on track to deliver full-year results in line with expectations.

The housebuilder and urban regenerator said total completions rose 43% in the six months to 31 March 2019 to 2,362, while the net reservation rate was at the top end of its target range and in line with the previous year at 0.86.

The company also said its total forward order book was up 49% to £1.04bn.

At 1240 BST, the shares were down 0.2% at 335.40p.

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