Viking Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:VKTX) shares dropped 5.6% during mid-day trading on Monday . The stock traded as low as $7.85 and last traded at $7.97. Approximately 2,306,742 shares were traded during mid-day trading, a decline of 28% from the average daily volume of 3,189,428 shares. The stock had previously closed at $8.44.

VKTX has been the subject of several research analyst reports. Svb Leerink initiated coverage on Viking Therapeutics in a research note on Friday, February 22nd. They issued a “mkt perform” rating for the company. William Blair restated an “outperform” rating on shares of Viking Therapeutics in a research note on Thursday, March 14th. Leerink Swann initiated coverage on Viking Therapeutics in a research note on Friday, February 22nd. They issued a “market perform” rating and a $10.00 price objective for the company. Raymond James reduced their price objective on Viking Therapeutics from $43.00 to $40.00 and set a “strong-buy” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, March 14th. Finally, Maxim Group reduced their price objective on Viking Therapeutics from $28.00 to $20.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, March 14th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company. Viking Therapeutics currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $22.54.

The company has a market capitalization of $622.49 million, a PE ratio of -19.93 and a beta of 2.56.

Viking Therapeutics (NASDAQ:VKTX) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, May 2nd. The biotechnology company reported ($0.07) EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of ($0.09) by $0.02. As a group, research analysts anticipate that Viking Therapeutics Inc will post -0.41 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company grew its holdings in Viking Therapeutics by 14.8% during the first quarter. The Manufacturers Life Insurance Company now owns 40,796 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $406,000 after acquiring an additional 5,254 shares during the period. Northern Trust Corp grew its holdings in Viking Therapeutics by 3.8% during the first quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 756,950 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $7,524,000 after acquiring an additional 27,992 shares during the period. State of Wisconsin Investment Board grew its holdings in Viking Therapeutics by 53.5% during the first quarter. State of Wisconsin Investment Board now owns 82,100 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $816,000 after acquiring an additional 28,600 shares during the period. Rubric Capital Management LP acquired a new stake in Viking Therapeutics during the first quarter worth about $8,051,000. Finally, Swiss National Bank grew its holdings in Viking Therapeutics by 5.0% during the first quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 117,200 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $1,165,000 after acquiring an additional 5,600 shares during the period. 65.44% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Viking Therapeutics (NASDAQ:VKTX)

Viking Therapeutics, Inc, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, focuses on the development of novel therapies for metabolic and endocrine disorders. Its lead drug candidate is VK2809, an orally available tissue and receptor-subtype selective agonist of the thyroid hormone receptor beta, which is in Phase II clinical trials to treat patients with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and elevated low-density lipoprotein cholesterol.

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