VIVUS (VVUS) Raised to “Buy” at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of VIVUS (NASDAQ:VVUS) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a research note issued to investors on Saturday morning. Zacks Investment Research currently has $5.50 target price on the biopharmaceutical company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “VIVUS is focused on maximizing the value of and monetizing its legacy products, Qsymia and Stendra. Meanwhile, challenges in the obesity market remain. Qsymia sales have been lackluster since launch. VIVUS is expanding reimbursement and promotional initiatives to boost Qsymia sales. Moreover, we are positive on VIVUS’ partnership agreements for Stendra as these provide the company a steady stream of cash flow from upfront and milestone payments. Meanwhile, VIVUS is focusing on building a cash flow positive portfolio of commercial products. The acquisition of Pancreaze has boosted sales significantly. Shares of the company have underperformed the industry in the past six months. Loss estimates are stable ahead of the Q4 earnings release. VIVUS has a mixed record of earnings surprises in the recent quarters.”

Separately, ValuEngine raised VIVUS from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report on Tuesday, February 5th.

VVUS opened at $5.22 on Friday. The company has a market capitalization of $55.28 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of -1.80 and a beta of 2.09. VIVUS has a 12-month low of $2.15 and a 12-month high of $9.90.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Worth Venture Partners LLC bought a new stake in shares of VIVUS in the 3rd quarter worth approximately $132,000. Renaissance Technologies LLC lifted its position in shares of VIVUS by 5.4% in the 2nd quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 8,273,800 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock worth $5,833,000 after acquiring an additional 423,100 shares during the period. Finally, Virtu Financial LLC bought a new stake in shares of VIVUS in the 4th quarter worth approximately $29,000. 17.10% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

VIVUS Company Profile

VIVUS, Inc, a biopharmaceutical company, develops and commercializes novel therapeutic products to address unmet medical needs in human health in the United States and the European Union. The company offers Qsymia for the treatment of obesity as an adjunct to a reduced-calorie diet and increased physical activity for chronic weight management in adult patients with an initial body mass index of 30 or greater, or obese patients, or 27 or greater, or overweight patients in the presence of at least one weight-related comorbidity, such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus or high cholesterol; and STENDRA, an oral phosphodiesterase type 5 inhibitor for the treatment of erectile dysfunction.

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