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NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Conn's (CONN) - Get Conn's, Inc. Report were surging 18.81% to $12.07 on heavy trading volume early Wednesday afternoon after Stifel raised its stock rating to "buy" from "hold."

The firm placed a $16 price target on shares of the durable goods retailer, based in The Woodlands, TX.

The ratings upgrade reflects Conn's announcement earlier this month that it would increase the overall yield of its loan portfolio between 6 and 9 percentage points, Stifel said in a note cited by Barron's. Stifel believes the higher yield could bolster per-share earnings by more than $2 by 2020.

"While there may be some offsets of the yield benefit from the changes contemplated in the loan structure (a longer term, a very slightly higher monthly higher payment, expected slight increase in charge-off rates with longer term, implementation of new paperwork processing procedures etc), the potential benefits far exceed the negatives," Stifel added.

About 4.14 million shares of Conn's have been traded so far today, well above the company's average trading volume of roughly 915,636 shares per day.

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Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates the stock as a "sell" with a ratings score of D.

Conn's weaknesses include its feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity, generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself and generally high debt management risk.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: CONN

TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon. Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this article's author.

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