Ligand Pharmaceuticals (LGND) Trading 5% Higher on Better-Than-Expected Earnings

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:LGND) traded up 5% on Thursday after the company announced better than expected quarterly earnings. The company traded as high as $183.67 and last traded at $171.19. 1,572,913 shares changed hands during trading, an increase of 282% from the average session volume of 412,174 shares. The stock had previously closed at $162.98.

The biotechnology company reported $1.32 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.03 by $0.29. The company had revenue of $45.66 million for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $41.99 million. Ligand Pharmaceuticals had a return on equity of 25.95% and a net margin of 52.10%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 36.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.69 earnings per share.

Several equities research analysts recently weighed in on the company. BidaskClub cut Ligand Pharmaceuticals from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Friday, October 19th. HC Wainwright reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $281.00 price target on shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals in a research note on Monday. Craig Hallum upped their price target on Ligand Pharmaceuticals from $230.00 to $260.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 7th. ValuEngine cut Ligand Pharmaceuticals from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 11th. Finally, Stephens reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $248.00 target price on shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals in a report on Wednesday, August 8th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $227.00.

In other Ligand Pharmaceuticals news, Director Todd C. Davis sold 2,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $253.99, for a total value of $634,975.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 42,556 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $10,808,798.44. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Todd C. Davis sold 9,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $239.78, for a total value of $2,158,020.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 44,806 shares in the company, valued at $10,743,582.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 119,922 shares of company stock worth $30,297,452 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 7.80% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. First Hawaiian Bank bought a new position in shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals during the third quarter valued at $131,000. Fred Alger Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals during the second quarter valued at $207,000. Advisor Partners LLC bought a new position in shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals during the third quarter valued at $207,000. Pennsylvania Trust Co bought a new position in shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals during the third quarter valued at $210,000. Finally, CIBC Asset Management Inc bought a new position in shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals during the third quarter valued at $210,000.

The firm has a market cap of $3.38 billion, a PE ratio of 66.61, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.40 and a beta of 1.52. The company has a quick ratio of 2.32, a current ratio of 2.34 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.96.

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About Ligand Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:LGND)

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated, a biopharmaceutical company, focuses on developing and acquiring technologies that help pharmaceutical companies to discover and develop medicines worldwide. Its commercial programs include Promacta, an oral medicine that increases the number of platelets in the blood; Kyprolis and Evomela, which are used to treat multiple myeloma; Baxdela, a captisol-enabled delafloxacin-IV for the treatment of acute bacterial skin and skin structure infections; Nexterone, a captisol-enabled formulation of amiodarone; Noxafil-IV, a captisol-enabled formulation of posaconazole for IV use; Carnexiv, which is indicated as replacement therapy for oral carbamazepine formulations; bazedoxifene for the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis; commercial pericardial repair and CanGaroo envelope extracellular matrix products; Exemptia for autoimmune diseases; Vivitra for breast cancer; and Bryxta for non-small cell lung cancer.

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