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Chip stocks gain on analyst comments

Semiconductor stocks gained ground Tuesday after several analysts either started or upgraded leading chipmakers with "buy" or "outperform" recommendations.

Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) moved up 4 7/8 to 122 7/16 after Lehman Brothers analyst Dan Niles started it with a "buy" recommendation.

Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NYSE: AMD) shot up 7, or 9 percent, to 81 after Niles started it with an "outperform" rating while Micron Technology (NYSE: MU) gained 3 3/4 to 68 3/8 after it was started with a "buy" rating and a 52-week price target of $100 a share.

"Micron is our best investment idea in the computer hardware space," Niles said in a research note. "We believe that Micron currently is approaching 25 percent market share and can earn nearly five times as much money at the peak of this cycle, leading to a stock price that could be four to five times higher as well."

Teradyne (NYSE: TER) picked up 9 11/16, or 13 percent, to 82 7/16 and Rambus Inc. (Nasdaq: RMBS) rose 13 1/8, or 8 percent, to 176 1/8.

Texas Instruments (NYSE: TXN) moved up 2 15/16 to 69 15/16 after Paine Webber analyst David Wong started coverage with an "attractive" recommendation.

"We think that communications applications for DSP and analog chips could help Texas Instruments accelerate top and bottom line growth to between 20 percent and 30 percent per year," Wong said in a research note. >