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LNT stock gets strong rating

New York — Citing a strong outlook for home goods, improving sales momentum and a tighter operational focus, Merrill Lynch has boosted its intermediate term rating on Linens 'n Things to a "strong buy" from an earlier "neutral" ranking.

Merrill analyst Mark Friedman set a 12-month price target of $37 for the retailer's stock, about 19 percent higher than the recent trading level of $31, and more than double the stock's 52-week low of $17.37 a share.

"We believe Linens' business has stabilized and sales momentum should continue to improve, boosted by internal initiatives and solid execution," Friedman said in a research note.

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