AcelRx Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ACRX) Sees Large Increase in Short Interest

AcelRx Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ACRX) was the target of a significant increase in short interest in the month of January. As of January 31st, there was short interest totalling 10,800,000 shares, an increase of 6.9% from the January 15th total of 10,100,000 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 1,020,000 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 10.6 days. Approximately 13.8% of the shares of the stock are short sold.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in the company. BlackRock Inc. boosted its position in AcelRx Pharmaceuticals by 149.8% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 6,047,743 shares of the specialty pharmaceutical company’s stock worth $15,301,000 after acquiring an additional 3,626,486 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its position in AcelRx Pharmaceuticals by 15.5% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 3,376,567 shares of the specialty pharmaceutical company’s stock worth $8,542,000 after acquiring an additional 451,962 shares during the last quarter. Marshall Wace LLP acquired a new position in AcelRx Pharmaceuticals during the fourth quarter worth about $386,000. Northern Trust Corp boosted its position in AcelRx Pharmaceuticals by 122.4% during the second quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 290,252 shares of the specialty pharmaceutical company’s stock worth $734,000 after acquiring an additional 159,744 shares during the last quarter. Finally, State Street Corp boosted its position in AcelRx Pharmaceuticals by 10.4% during the third quarter. State Street Corp now owns 1,403,576 shares of the specialty pharmaceutical company’s stock worth $3,088,000 after acquiring an additional 132,409 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 23.25% of the company’s stock.

Several analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. Credit Suisse Group lowered shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating and dropped their target price for the company from $7.00 to $2.00 in a research report on Monday, November 11th. HC Wainwright reiterated a “buy” rating and issued a $9.00 target price on shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals in a research report on Friday, November 8th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, January 8th. Finally, ValuEngine upgraded shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Saturday, January 4th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. AcelRx Pharmaceuticals presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $5.95.

Shares of NASDAQ ACRX opened at $1.60 on Friday. The company’s 50-day simple moving average is $1.86 and its 200-day simple moving average is $2.09. AcelRx Pharmaceuticals has a 52-week low of $1.60 and a 52-week high of $4.09. The firm has a market cap of $132.89 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of -2.39 and a beta of 2.11.

AcelRx Pharmaceuticals Company Profile

AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc, a specialty pharmaceutical company, focuses on the development and commercialization of therapies for the treatment of acute pain. Its lead product candidate is DSUVIA, a 30 mcg sufentanil sublingual tablet for the treatment of moderate-to-severe acute pain. The company also develops ZALVISO, a pre-programmed and patient-controlled analgesia system that allows hospital patients with moderate-to-severe acute pain to self-dose with sufentanil sublingual tablets to manage their pain.

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