Shares of Imperial Bancorp in Inglewood, Calif., have surged 11.3% in a down market in the last two weeks as investors become more convinced that the company is likely to be taken over.

Speculation about $6.4-billion-asset Imperial was fueled on Tuesday after Charlotte A. Chamberlain, a bank analyst at Jefferies & Co. in Los Angeles, sent a report to clients on Tuesday, calling the banking company "a likely target for U.S. Bancorp, Bank of America Corp., and Comerica."

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