J.P. Morgan Securities Inc. has added Boatmen's Bancshares to its coverage list with a "buy" rating, saying the bank could benefit from the expected rash of mergers in its home state of Missouri.

"Even though Boatmen's may not sell or be taken out, we think the stock will move up nicely because of its franchise" in the state, Morgan's senior analyst Catherine L. Murray said Wednesday. She set a 12-month price target of $34 to $36 on the stock, which closed at tktk up tktk.

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