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Why Viking Therapeutics Stock Is Witnessing a Dramatic Rise Today

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Sep. 18 2018, Published 12:41 p.m. ET

Share price movements

Viking Therapeutics (VKTX) rose almost 126.75% above its previous closing price of $10.39 in the morning trading session on September 18. In the extended morning session, the stock mostly traded above $18.5, 78.05% higher than its closing price on September 17.

This robust share price rise is attributable to the positive top line results the company announced related to its Phase 2 trial evaluating the clinical potential of liver-selective thyroid receptor beta agonist VK2809 in patients suffering from hypercholesterolemia and nonalcoholic fatty liver disease (or NAFLD). The company demonstrated a statistically significant reduction in LDL-cholesterol (or LDL-C) levels and liver fat content in patients treated with the investigational therapy compared to those who received a placebo.

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Analysts’ recommendations for Viking

Analysts’ 12-month consensus recommendation for Viking Therapeutics as of September 18 is a “buy.”

Of the seven analysts covering Viking Therapeutics in September, one has given it a “strong buy,” and six have given it “holds.”

Analysts have a 12-month consensus target price of $16.5 for Viking, which indicates a potential fall of 12.97% from the stock’s last observed trading price on September 18.

Financial performance in the second quarter

In the second quarter of 2018, Viking Therapeutics reported revenue and EPS of $34.61 million and -$0.13, respectively. At the end of the quarter, the company had cash worth $142.2 million on its balance sheet. It raised $77.6 million in gross proceeds from its common stock offering in the quarter. These funds are expected to support the company’s research initiatives until 2020.

Other research programs

Viking Therapeutics is exploring the potential of VK2809 in reducing liver fat content and improving the overall metabolisms of patients suffering from a rare condition known as glycogen storage disease type Ia (or GSD Ia). The company is studying another investigational therapy, the small molecule thyroid receptor agonist VK0214, for the treatment of a rare disease called X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (or X-ALD).

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