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Lufthansa shares soar amid positive broker comments

Lufthansa has seen its shares jump on broker comments suggesting the company is in good shape and will perform well this year. Europe's largest airline also stands to profit from a lower fuel bill.

Lufthansa shares gained more than 7 percent in value in early trading Friday, emerging as the day's top winner in the German DAX 30 blue-chip index.

Market experts attributed the jump primarily to positive comments made by the Mainfirst group of analysts who said the stock still had high potential as they raised the target price to 18 euros ($24) per share, up from a current share price of about 16 euros on Thursday.

Exceeding the 17-euro mark Friday, Lufthansa shares reached their highest levels in about seven months.

Ambitious goals

Watch video 01:13

Lufthansa gives up short-distance flights

Adding to the stock rally was a company presentation forecasting a shrinking 2014 fuel bill. It expected the

German flagship carrier

to pay only 6.9 billion euros ($9.38 billion) for fuel this year, down from 7.1 billion in 2013.

Lufthansa said

the firm's operating profit

amounted to between 600 and 700 million euros and was to rise to 2.3 billion euros by 2015.

The company said operating earnings would increase despite a further fall in average ticket prices, with the more lucrative business class currently being trimmed in many passenger planes in response to low demand.

hg/pfd (Reuters, dpa)

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