Geron (NASDAQ:GERN) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday.

According to Zacks, “Geron reported mixed third-quarter results with earnings beating estimates but sales missing the same. The company suffered a major setback when J&J terminated its agreement related to development of its sole pipeline candidate – imetelstat. With this termination, company lost a strong partner and a major source of funds. Geron however has regained global rights to imetelstat and decided to independently develop the candidate in a late-stage study – IMerge – for myelodysplastic syndromes. Initial data and data from the expansion arm of the mid-stage portion of IMerge on imetelstat were impressive. The FDA had granted fast track designation to imetelstat in late 2017. Geron's dependence on a single pipeline candidate however raises concerns. The company’s shares have underperformed the industry in the past six months.”

GERN has been the topic of several other reports. ValuEngine upgraded Geron from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Friday, August 24th. B. Riley lowered Geron from a “buy” rating to a “neutral” rating and lowered their price target for the company from $5.75 to $1.50 in a research note on Tuesday, October 2nd. BidaskClub lowered Geron from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, November 13th. Finally, S&P Equity Research lowered their price target on Geron from $2.32 to $1.80 in a research note on Thursday, September 27th. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, four have issued a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Geron presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $3.76.

NASDAQ GERN opened at $1.50 on Tuesday. Geron has a twelve month low of $1.46 and a twelve month high of $6.99. The stock has a market cap of $300.02 million, a P/E ratio of -8.33 and a beta of 2.41.

Geron (NASDAQ:GERN) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, November 1st. The biopharmaceutical company reported ($0.03) earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of ($0.05) by $0.02. Geron had a negative return on equity of 19.16% and a negative net margin of 3,077.78%. The business had revenue of $0.17 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $0.22 million. Analysts forecast that Geron will post -0.2 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In related news, Director Robert J. Spiegel sold 175,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $6.85, for a total transaction of $1,198,750.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 110,576 shares in the company, valued at $757,445.60. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Insiders own 8.20% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Paloma Partners Management Co bought a new stake in shares of Geron in the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $100,000. Seven Eight Capital LP bought a new stake in shares of Geron in the 3rd quarter valued at approximately $123,000. Summit X LLC bought a new stake in shares of Geron in the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $132,000. M Holdings Securities Inc. grew its stake in shares of Geron by 230.6% in the 3rd quarter. M Holdings Securities Inc. now owns 82,650 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $145,000 after purchasing an additional 57,650 shares during the period. Finally, SG Americas Securities LLC grew its stake in shares of Geron by 352.2% in the 2nd quarter. SG Americas Securities LLC now owns 57,936 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $199,000 after purchasing an additional 45,124 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 30.67% of the company’s stock.

Geron Company Profile

Geron Corporation operates as a biopharmaceutical company. The company supports the clinical stage development of imetelstat, a telomerase inhibitor for the treatment of hematologic myeloid malignancies. It has collaboration and license agreement with Janssen Biotech, Inc to develop and commercialize imetelstat worldwide for indications in oncology, including hematologic myeloid malignancies and other human therapeutic uses.

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