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Updated from 9:55 a.m. EDT.

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of United Continental (UAL) were advancing 8.99% to $51.17 in early afternoon trade on Tuesday after the company hired Scott Kirby as president of the Chicago-based air carrier late yesterday.

Kirby was previously at American Airlines (AAL) where he was president following the company's 2013 merger with US Airways. He will assume his role at United Continental effective immediately and will report to CEO Oscar Munoz.

TheStreet's Jim Cramer explains in the above video that Kirby gives United Continental a "stronger bench," but cautions that the airline industry has been under pressure lately due to weak international travel.

Following the appointment, Raymond James raised its rating on the stock to "outperform" from "market perform" with a $65 price target, according to the Fly.

The firm said that Kirby has strong industry experience and that it has increased conviction the company will reduce its margin gap relative to competitors over the next year.

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Additionally, competitive capacity burdens are likely to improve by 2017, Raymond James said.

More than 7.92 million shares have traded so far today vs. the 30-day average of 3.87 million shares.

Separately, 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 articles's author.

TheStreet Ratings rated this stock as a "buy" with a ratings score of B-.

The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its notable return on equity, attractive valuation levels, good cash flow from operations and expanding profit margins. We feel its strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

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

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