Hargreaves Lansdown argues that Barclays (LON:BARC) is moving in the right direction despite the fall in half-year profits, Citywire reports. The comments follow the FTSE 100 lender’s interim update yesterday which showed that a hefty settlement with the US Department of Justice in March had pressured the group’s performance. The group, however, said that the second quarter was the first one in quite some time without significant conduct charges.
Barclays’ share price closed deep in the red yesterday, shedding 2.69 percent to 186.54p, as investors digested the lender’s results. The stock underperformed the broader market selloff which saw the benchmark FTSE 100 index give up 76.98 points to end the session 1.01 percent lower at 7,575.93, as the Bank of England moved to hike interest rates.
Barclays moving in the right direction
Citywire quoted Hargreaves Lansdown’s analyst Laith Khalaf as commenting yesterday that the bank was ‘moving in the right direction’ but that it needed to ‘deliver some consistency in its performance’.
“Overall Barclays has had a good quarter, but we need to see sustained momentum to get excited about its prospects,” the analyst pointed out, adding, however, that the group was not ‘entirely out of the woods on litigation yet either’ with just over a year until the deadline for payment protection insurance claims and “we wouldn’t be surprised to see some additional costs as consumers react to the deadline”.
Other analysts on blue-chip lender
JPMorgan Chase & Co and Cfra, which see Barclays as a ‘buy,’ both set price targets on the shares of 250p yesterday, while Goldman Sachs, which is ‘neutral’ on the FTSE 100 lender, set a valuation of 220p. According to MarketBeat, the blue-chip group currently has a consensus ‘buy’ rating and an average price target of 223.93p.