Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (IONS) Hits New 12-Month High at $63.45

Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:IONS) hit a new 52-week high on Tuesday . The stock traded as high as $63.45 and last traded at $63.50, with a volume of 1,137,818 shares trading hands. The stock had previously closed at $61.15.

Several equities research analysts have weighed in on the stock. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Ionis Pharmaceuticals from a “hold” rating to a “strong-buy” rating and set a $68.00 target price for the company in a research note on Tuesday. Needham & Company LLC reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $64.00 price target on shares of Ionis Pharmaceuticals in a report on Tuesday. Evercore ISI started coverage on shares of Ionis Pharmaceuticals in a report on Wednesday, August 16th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $65.00 price target for the company. Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Ionis Pharmaceuticals in a report on Tuesday, September 12th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reaffirmed an “underperform” rating and issued a $18.00 price target (up previously from $17.00) on shares of Ionis Pharmaceuticals in a report on Thursday, August 10th. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating, six have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $50.04.

The stock has a 50-day moving average of $54.75 and a 200 day moving average of $49.79. The firm has a market capitalization of $7.85 billion, a PE ratio of 303.32 and a beta of 3.12.

Ionis Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:IONS) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 8th. The company reported ($0.09) EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of ($0.06) by ($0.03). The firm had revenue of $104.15 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $93.29 million. Ionis Pharmaceuticals had a net margin of 5.25% and a return on equity of 15.52%. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 170.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted ($0.47) EPS. Equities analysts forecast that Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. will post ($0.16) EPS for the current year.

In related news, major shareholder Ionis Pharmaceuticals Inc bought 3,125,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Wednesday, July 19th. The stock was purchased at an average price of $8.00 per share, with a total value of $25,000,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 28,884,540 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $231,076,320. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, SVP Patrick R. O’neil sold 1,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, October 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $55.00, for a total value of $55,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold 65,500 shares of company stock valued at $3,546,225 in the last ninety days. Company insiders own 2.13% of the company’s stock.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in Ionis Pharmaceuticals by 4.4% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 9,855,160 shares of the company’s stock worth $501,332,000 after purchasing an additional 417,364 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in Ionis Pharmaceuticals by 4.0% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 6,823,987 shares of the company’s stock worth $347,135,000 after purchasing an additional 264,179 shares during the period. State Street Corp boosted its position in Ionis Pharmaceuticals by 20.5% during the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 3,340,471 shares of the company’s stock worth $134,285,000 after purchasing an additional 567,792 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its position in Ionis Pharmaceuticals by 8.6% during the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 947,906 shares of the company’s stock worth $38,105,000 after purchasing an additional 75,027 shares during the period. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. boosted its position in Ionis Pharmaceuticals by 6.4% during the first quarter. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. now owns 736,989 shares of the company’s stock worth $29,627,000 after purchasing an additional 44,372 shares during the period. 89.24% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Ionis Pharmaceuticals

Ionis Pharmaceuticals, Inc is engaged in discovering and developing ribonucleic acid (RNA)-targeted therapeutics. The Company, using its drug discovery platform, has developed a pipeline of drugs for patients with unmet medical needs. The Company’s segments include Ionis Core and Akcea Therapeutics. In the Ionis Core segment, the Company is engaged in exploiting a drug discovery platform to generate a pipeline of drugs for the Company and its partners.

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