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Liberty Global Shares Surge After Upgrade

NEW YORK (AP) ¿ Liberty Global Inc. shares surged Tuesday after a Morgan Stanley analyst upgraded the company, pointing to its depressed stock price and trouble for smaller competitors.

Shares of Englewood, Colo.-based Liberty, which provides video, voice, and broadband Internet services, climbed $1.38, or 12.7 percent, to $12.29 in afternoon trading. The stock has ranged from $9.11 to $37.08 over the past year.

Analyst David Gober raised his rating on Liberty to "Equal-weight," from "Underweight."

He told investors in a note Tuesday that there are still risks to Liberty's stock, including continued deterioration of Eastern European economies, "but there may be a light at the end of the tunnel as well."

And with the stock down more than 68 percent over the past year, investors have priced most of the risk into shares, Gober said.

He also suggested a silver lining for Liberty in the global credit crunch: "Over the next year, smaller competitors will likely need to increase prices or exit the business due to capital constraints, providing opportunity for Liberty Global to stabilize or regain market share."

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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