Sprint could add new business as a result of AT&T / T-Mobile deal, analyst believes

Sprint is openly opposed to AT&T’s proposed $39 billion acquisition of T-Mobile, but the scrappy carrier stands to benefit from the deal according to Piper Jaffray analyst Christopher Larsen. Larsen on Friday lifted his rating on Sprint stock from neutral to overweight, while also upping his price target from $5 to $6.50. The analyst sees brighter days ahead for the carrier through the rest of 2011 and 2012 as well, and he also believes the AT&T / T-Mobile deal could be a good thing for Sprint. Larsen thinks the merger could cause some subscribers to leave the new mega-carrier and flee to Sprint. Beyond that, AT&T may be required to divest some markets in order for the deal to be approved, and Sprint may very well pick up that business or even some of AT&T’s spectrum if it is forced to let some go. Finally, the analyst also believes a post-merger market would be less prone to aggressive price cutting, which would certainly help Sprint maintain a competitive advantage.

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