Regulus Therapeutics (NASDAQ: RGLS) and Galectin Therapeutics (NASDAQ:GALT) are both small-cap healthcare companies, but which is the superior stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their earnings, risk, profitability, dividends, valuation, analyst recommendations and institutional ownership.

Institutional and Insider Ownership

59.4% of Regulus Therapeutics shares are owned by institutional investors. Comparatively, 11.1% of Galectin Therapeutics shares are owned by institutional investors. 4.8% of Regulus Therapeutics shares are owned by company insiders. Comparatively, 38.8% of Galectin Therapeutics shares are owned by company insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that hedge funds, large money managers and endowments believe a company will outperform the market over the long term.

Profitability

This table compares Regulus Therapeutics and Galectin Therapeutics’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
Regulus Therapeutics -87,933.34% -185.15% -83.15%
Galectin Therapeutics N/A -1,747.01% -160.00%

Analyst Ratings

This is a summary of recent recommendations for Regulus Therapeutics and Galectin Therapeutics, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
Regulus Therapeutics 0 5 2 0 2.29
Galectin Therapeutics 0 1 3 0 2.75

Regulus Therapeutics presently has a consensus price target of $2.88, suggesting a potential upside of 223.03%. Galectin Therapeutics has a consensus price target of $5.00, suggesting a potential upside of 107.47%. Given Regulus Therapeutics’ higher probable upside, equities research analysts clearly believe Regulus Therapeutics is more favorable than Galectin Therapeutics.

Risk and Volatility

Regulus Therapeutics has a beta of 1.53, indicating that its stock price is 53% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Galectin Therapeutics has a beta of 2.55, indicating that its stock price is 155% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings & Valuation

This table compares Regulus Therapeutics and Galectin Therapeutics’ revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
Regulus Therapeutics $1.19 million 77.75 -$81.83 million ($1.35) -0.66
Galectin Therapeutics N/A N/A -$21.43 million ($0.56) -4.30

Galectin Therapeutics has lower revenue, but higher earnings than Regulus Therapeutics. Galectin Therapeutics is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Regulus Therapeutics, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Summary

Galectin Therapeutics beats Regulus Therapeutics on 7 of the 12 factors compared between the two stocks.

About Regulus Therapeutics

Regulus Therapeutics Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company focused on discovering and developing drugs that target microRNAs to treat a range of diseases. The Company uses its microRNA product platform to develop chemically modified, single-stranded oligonucleotides that the Company calls anti-miRs to modulate microRNAs and return diseased cells to their healthy state. The Company’s Regulus microMarkers division is focused on identifying microRNAs as biomarkers of human disease. It has a research collaboration with Biogen focused on the discovery of microRNAs as biomarkers for multiple sclerosis and has completed research for another pharmaceutical company to explore microRNAs as biomarkers for specific patient populations. The Company is developing RG-101, an N-Acetylgalactosamine (GalNAc)-conjugated anti-miR targeting miR-122; RG-012, an anti-miR targeting microRNA-21 for the treatment of Alport syndrome, and RG-125, a GalNAc-conjugated anti-miR targeting microRNA-103/107.

About Galectin Therapeutics

Galectin Therapeutics Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company engaged in drug research and development to create therapies for fibrotic disease and cancer. The Company’s drug candidates are based on its method of targeting galectin proteins, which are mediators of biologic and pathologic functions. It uses naturally occurring, readily-available plant materials as starting material in manufacturing processes to create complex carbohydrates with specific molecular weights and other pharmaceutical properties. The Company has two product candidates, GR-MD-02 and GM-CT-01. The Company’s galectin-3 inhibitor is GR-MD-02. The Company is focusing on development of GR-MD-02 intended to be used in the treatment of liver fibrosis associated with fatty liver disease (NASH), moderate to severe plaque psoriasis and in cancer therapy in combination with immune-system modifying agent(s). GM-CT-01 is a compound that continues to be explored in preclinical studies.

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