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ExOne shares rise as analyst adds "Buy" rating

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of ExOne Co. rose sharply on Thursday after a Canaccord Genuity analyst initiated coverage of the maker of three-dimensional printers.

THE SPARK: Analyst Bobby Burleson initiated coverage with a "Buy" rating and a $55 price target. Demand is growing for the kind of 3D printing services offered by ExOne while suppliers of that technology are few, he wrote. He said consolidation in the industry is likely.

THE BIG PICTURE: Interest has been building in 3D printing, which allows companies to fabricate parts for models and prototypes and, increasingly, for low volume production.

While many 3D printers work with plastics, ExOne handles other metals, including the expected addition of titanium, Burleson wrote. ExOne should also benefit as companies seek increasingly high volumes from 3D printing equipment.

Burleson wrote that recent declines in ExOne's share price make this a good time to get into the stock.

SHARE ACTION: Up $2.63, or 6.1 percent, to $45.54 in afternoon trading even as the Nasdaq composite index slipped. Its shares have ranged between $23.50 and $51.88 since it went public in February.