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Analyst Upgrades Insituform Technologies To 'buy'

The Associated Press

Shares of Insituform Technologies Inc. rose Monday after a Janney Capital Markets analyst said the pipeline company's European and Asia Pacific sewer rehabilitation businesses are well-positioned to contribute to a strong second half.

THE SPARK: Analyst Liam D. Burke also said in a note to clients that the Chesterfield, Mo., company will benefit from its energy and mining business.

Most of Insituform's business is generated in North America, and the analyst is concerned about margin pressure created by its product mix in North America, though he said it has identified growth opportunities outside the United States including in the Middle East.

"We are expecting margins to return to more normal levels as product mix improves and the company begins to generate revenues in geographies where they have made significant up-front investments," Burke wrote.

THE ANALYSIS: Burke upgraded shares of Insituform to "buy" from "neutral" and said the company's stock price â¿¿ at slightly more than 11 times his 2011 earnings per share estimate â¿¿ is trading below the low end of its historical price-to-earnings multiples.

That means that investors who buy now are paying less for each dollar in profits.

SHARE ACTION: Rose 6.3 percent, or 97 cents, to $16.28 in afternoon trading, while broader trading indexes climbed 1.9 percent or more. They have traded between $13.01 and $30 the past year.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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