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Ahead of the Bell: Analyst upgrades Volcano shares

The Associated Press

Shares of Volcano Corp. gained Tuesday before markets opened and after an analyst covering the company raised her rating and price target on the stock.

BMO Capital Markets analyst Joanne Wuensch said the San Diego company's stock has room to grow in a relatively stable cardiology market, where the pressures it faces are well understood.

Volcano makes a variety of tools used to diagnose and treat vascular and structural heart disease.

Wuensch said the company has faced challenges from foreign exchange rates and worries about the dilutive impact of mergers and acquisitions, among other concerns. She raised her rating on the shares to "Outperform" from "Market Perform," and increased her target price on the stock to $28 from $23.

The analyst also said she was updating her estimates, including revenue forecasts for 2014 and 2015, in part to include Pioneer Plus.

Volcano said late last month it planned to buy the Pioneer Plus diagnostic ultrasound transducer and percutaneous catheter from Medtronic, Inc.

Volcano shares added nearly 2 percent, or 45 cents, to $23.45 Tuesday in pre-market trading. The stock had fallen more than 2 percent so far this year as of Monday's market close.