Esperion Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:ESPR) traded down 5.7% on Friday . The stock traded as low as $43.00 and last traded at $43.16. 1,551,030 shares were traded during mid-day trading, an increase of 78% from the average session volume of 873,123 shares. The stock had previously closed at $45.75.

Several equities research analysts have recently weighed in on the company. BidaskClub downgraded Esperion Therapeutics from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 12th. ValuEngine cut Esperion Therapeutics from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, June 21st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Esperion Therapeutics from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $48.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Tuesday, July 31st. Chardan Capital upgraded Esperion Therapeutics to a “hold” rating and set a $32.50 price target on the stock in a research note on Friday, July 20th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus started coverage on Esperion Therapeutics in a research note on Friday, September 14th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $89.00 price target on the stock. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $80.58.

Esperion Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ESPR) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, August 2nd. The biopharmaceutical company reported ($1.71) earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of ($1.70) by ($0.01). During the same period last year, the business posted ($1.92) earnings per share. sell-side analysts expect that Esperion Therapeutics Inc will post -6.31 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, Director Roger S. Newton sold 7,300 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $50.06, for a total transaction of $365,438.00. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 616,426 shares in the company, valued at approximately $30,858,285.56. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, major shareholder Target N. V. Biotech purchased 50,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, July 12th. The shares were bought at an average price of $41.77 per share, for a total transaction of $2,088,500.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 3,232,964 shares in the company, valued at approximately $135,040,906.28. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders have bought a total of 150,000 shares of company stock worth $6,369,500 over the last quarter. Insiders own 32.50% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. Northern Trust Corp raised its position in shares of Esperion Therapeutics by 1.8% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 590,104 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock worth $23,126,000 after purchasing an additional 10,702 shares during the period. Bank of Nova Scotia acquired a new stake in shares of Esperion Therapeutics during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $13,325,000. Granahan Investment Management Inc. MA acquired a new stake in shares of Esperion Therapeutics during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $4,207,000. Nexthera Capital LP acquired a new stake in shares of Esperion Therapeutics during the 2nd quarter worth approximately $11,259,000. Finally, Partner Fund Management L.P. raised its position in shares of Esperion Therapeutics by 117.7% during the 2nd quarter. Partner Fund Management L.P. now owns 2,460,157 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock worth $96,414,000 after purchasing an additional 1,330,159 shares during the period.

About Esperion Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ESPR)

Esperion Therapeutics, Inc, a lipid management company, focuses on developing and commercializing oral therapies for the treatment of patients with elevated low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C). Its lead product candidate is bempedoic acid/ezetimibe combination pill, a non-statin, orally available, LDL-C lowering therapy for patients with hypercholesterolemia and with atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease, and/or heterozygous familial hypercholesterolemia that is in Phase III long-term safety and tolerability study.

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