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Piper Jaffray looked into Teva Pharmaceuticals (TASE, Nasdaq: TEVA) business in North America and was highly impressed. The investment bank decided to raise its 12-month price target for Teva by a whole five dollars to $47, which is 11% above the generic drug giant's market cap on Nasdaq and the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

Tomorrow the company's market cap will be a lot bigger, after it completes its $7.4 billion merger with Ivax Corp.

Anyway, Piper Jaffray's price target is based on 23 times Teva's estimated earnings per share for 2006, $2.04 per share.

It represents a 15% premium over the multiple for peer companies. Piper Jaffray feels Teva merits the upside because of its impending acquisition of Ivax.

The investment bank repeated an Outperform rating for Teva stock.

The analysts also updated their forecasts for Teva, which is about to regain the title of biggest generic drug company in the world. For the fourth quarter of 2005 Piper Jaffray believes Teva netted $1.45 billion to $1.47 billion or 42-44 cents per share. That is one cent above the Wall Street consensus.

Teva stock over two years