UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. lessened its holdings in shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:LGND) by 6.5% in the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 115,398 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock after selling 8,055 shares during the quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. owned about 0.55% of Ligand Pharmaceuticals worth $14,009,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also modified their holdings of the company. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals by 166,566.2% during the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,614,993 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $276,770,000 after purchasing an additional 2,613,424 shares in the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. raised its stake in Ligand Pharmaceuticals by 38.2% in the second quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 372,465 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock valued at $45,217,000 after purchasing an additional 102,892 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC purchased a new stake in Ligand Pharmaceuticals in the first quarter valued at approximately $10,702,000. Gotham Asset Management LLC raised its stake in Ligand Pharmaceuticals by 246.7% in the first quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC now owns 117,749 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock valued at $12,463,000 after purchasing an additional 83,784 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in Ligand Pharmaceuticals by 4.6% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,687,618 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock valued at $178,618,000 after purchasing an additional 74,193 shares in the last quarter.

In other Ligand Pharmaceuticals news, VP Charles S. Berkman sold 18,625 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $126.96, for a total transaction of $2,364,630.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the vice president now owns 24,423 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,100,744.08. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CEO John L. Higgins sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, September 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $130.00, for a total transaction of $650,000.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 144,171 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $18,742,230. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 37,208 shares of company stock worth $4,733,796. 14.70% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

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Several equities research analysts have issued reports on the stock. HC Wainwright reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $150.00 target price on shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals in a research report on Tuesday, September 5th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals from a “strong sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 11th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 19th. Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “hold” rating and issued a $103.00 price target (up previously from $100.00) on shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals in a report on Monday, July 17th. Finally, ValuEngine raised shares of Ligand Pharmaceuticals from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, June 22nd. Four research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $133.50.

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:LGND) opened at 137.17 on Wednesday. Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated has a one year low of $87.50 and a one year high of $138.49. The stock has a market capitalization of $2.89 billion, a PE ratio of 334.56 and a beta of 1.01. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $132.07 and its 200-day moving average price is $118.77.

Ligand Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:LGND) last issued its earnings results on Monday, August 7th. The biotechnology company reported $0.67 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.25 by $0.42. The firm had revenue of $28.00 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $24.40 million. Ligand Pharmaceuticals had a net margin of 7.39% and a return on equity of 5.05%. Ligand Pharmaceuticals’s revenue for the quarter was up 43.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.50 earnings per share. Analysts expect that Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated will post $2.95 earnings per share for the current year.

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Profile

Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (Ligand) is a biopharmaceutical company that focuses on developing and acquiring technologies that help pharmaceutical companies discover and develop medicines. The Company is involved in the development and licensing of biopharmaceutical assets. The Company employs research technologies, such as nuclear receptor assays, high throughput computer screening, formulation science, liver targeted pro-drug technologies and antibody discovery technologies to assist companies in their work toward obtaining prescription drug approvals.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Ligand Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:LGND)

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