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Navistar shares rise on analyst comments

NEW YORK (AP) -- Shares of Navistar International Corp. rose Thursday after a Jefferies analyst said that he expects the commercial truck and engine maker to have a more profitable 2014.

THE SPARK: Analyst Stephen Volkmann reiterated his "Buy" rating on Navistar's stock and left its price target at $45.

THE BIG PICTURE: On Wednesday, Navistar reported that it lost money during its third quarter due to weak demand for big trucks. It said it will lay off about 500 employees to cut costs.

The Lisle, Ill.-based company also makes trucks, diesel engines and commercial buses. As sales fell last year, the company launched a cost-cutting program.

THE ANALYSIS: Despite the weak third-quarter results, Volkmann said in a note to clients that he sees "incremental progress in the business." He said that he expects the company to be more profitable next year as demand for big trucks picks up and cost reductions begin to benefit the company.

SHARE ACTION: Up $1.06, or 3.2 percent, to $34.13 Thursday. Shares are up 57 percent since the beginning of the year, but are down 12 percent since hitting a 52-week high of $38.81 in May.