Ligand Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:LGND) announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday. The biotechnology company reported $1.31 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.06 by $0.25, RTT News reports. The firm had revenue of $50.50 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $49.39 million. Ligand Pharmaceuticals had a net margin of 12.76% and a return on equity of 7.83%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 32.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $1.25 EPS. Ligand Pharmaceuticals updated its FY18 guidance to $4.22 EPS.
Ligand Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ LGND) traded up $0.83 during trading hours on Wednesday, reaching $156.34. 211,505 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 292,803. Ligand Pharmaceuticals has a 52 week low of $95.08 and a 52 week high of $170.30. The company has a quick ratio of 0.95, a current ratio of 0.97 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.05. The company has a market cap of $3,316.51, a price-to-earnings ratio of 225.38, a P/E/G ratio of 1.68 and a beta of 1.07.
A number of equities research analysts have recently weighed in on the stock. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a report on Friday, January 5th. Craig Hallum restated a “buy” rating and issued a $170.00 price objective (up from $160.00) on shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals in a report on Wednesday, November 15th. HC Wainwright set a $157.00 price objective on shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, October 24th. Deutsche Bank lowered shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $105.00 price objective for the company. in a report on Monday, November 20th. Finally, Roth Capital set a $158.00 price objective on shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, November 13th. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have issued a hold rating, four have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. Ligand Pharmaceuticals has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $150.83.
In related news, Director Stephen L. Sabba sold 925 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, December 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $137.25, for a total transaction of $126,956.25. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 26,985 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,703,691.25. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, CEO John L. Higgins sold 22,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, January 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $165.00, for a total transaction of $3,712,500.00. Following the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 111,700 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $18,430,500. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 63,024 shares of company stock valued at $9,934,043 over the last quarter. 8.30% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
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About Ligand Pharmaceuticals
Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (Ligand) is a biopharmaceutical company that focuses on developing and acquiring technologies that help pharmaceutical companies discover and develop medicines. The Company is involved in the development and licensing of biopharmaceutical assets. The Company employs research technologies, such as nuclear receptor assays, high throughput computer screening, formulation science, liver targeted pro-drug technologies and antibody discovery technologies to assist companies in their work toward obtaining prescription drug approvals.
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