Viking Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:VKTX) Sees Significant Growth in Short Interest

The biotechnology company reported ($0.13) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.14) …

Viking Therapeutics logoViking Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:VKTX) saw a large growth in short interest during the month of September. As of September 30th, there was short interest totalling 11,200,000 shares, a growth of 19.9% from the September 15th total of 9,340,000 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 1,260,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 8.9 days. Approximately 17.3% of the shares of the company are sold short.

NASDAQ VKTX opened at $5.90 on Monday. The business’s fifty day simple moving average is $6.18 and its 200-day simple moving average is $6.64. The firm has a market cap of $429.27 million, a PE ratio of -13.41 and a beta of 2.00. Viking Therapeutics has a 52 week low of $3.26 and a 52 week high of $8.87.

Viking Therapeutics (NASDAQ:VKTX) last released its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 29th. The biotechnology company reported ($0.13) earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.14) by $0.01. As a group, equities research analysts expect that Viking Therapeutics will post -0.61 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, major shareholder Ligand Pharmaceuticals Inc sold 164,488 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, August 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $8.07, for a total value of $1,327,418.16. Company insiders own 3.70% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the company. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. lifted its position in shares of Viking Therapeutics by 592.6% during the 2nd quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 576,154 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock valued at $4,154,000 after acquiring an additional 492,965 shares during the last quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. lifted its stake in Viking Therapeutics by 18.9% during the first quarter. Alliancebernstein L.P. now owns 83,600 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $391,000 after purchasing an additional 13,300 shares during the period. Advisor Group Holdings Inc. boosted its holdings in Viking Therapeutics by 39.0% during the second quarter. Advisor Group Holdings Inc. now owns 60,898 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock valued at $439,000 after purchasing an additional 17,077 shares in the last quarter. Royal Bank of Canada grew its stake in shares of Viking Therapeutics by 3.7% in the 1st quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 47,655 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock valued at $223,000 after purchasing an additional 1,693 shares during the period. Finally, WINTON GROUP Ltd raised its holdings in shares of Viking Therapeutics by 33.7% in the 2nd quarter. WINTON GROUP Ltd now owns 358,101 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $2,582,000 after buying an additional 90,175 shares in the last quarter. 55.30% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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Several analysts have recently weighed in on VKTX shares. B. Riley reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $15.00 target price on shares of Viking Therapeutics in a report on Thursday, September 10th. William Blair restated a “buy” rating on shares of Viking Therapeutics in a research report on Friday, September 11th. Raymond James reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $25.00 target price on shares of Viking Therapeutics in a research report on Thursday, August 6th. BidaskClub raised Viking Therapeutics from a “strong sell” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Saturday, October 10th. Finally, HC Wainwright lifted their price target on Viking Therapeutics from $18.00 to $21.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, August 28th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $16.33.

About Viking Therapeutics

Viking Therapeutics, Inc, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, focuses on the development of novel therapies for metabolic and endocrine disorders. Its lead drug candidate is VK2809, an orally available tissue and receptor-subtype selective agonist of the thyroid hormone receptor beta, which is in Phase 2b clinical trials to treat patients with biopsy-confirmed non-alcoholic steatohepatitis.

See Also: Earnings Per Share (EPS)

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