Mizuho assumed coverage on shares of Spark Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ONCE) in a note issued to investors on Monday. The brokerage set a “buy” rating and a $79.00 price target on the biotechnology company’s stock. Mizuho’s price target would indicate a potential upside of 46.08% from the stock’s current price.
The analysts wrote, “We see strong potential for the product in addressing the inherited retinal disease (IRD) market. We are also excited about the hemophilia B program. The company’s hemophilia A program, however, remains to be proven. Recent data was below expectations and we await the anticipated update on the program in 2Q/3Q18 to potentially give greater credit to this indication. We are initiating with a Buy rating and a $79 PT. KeyPoints Gene therapy is coming of age. After years of advancements and discovery in the field of gene therapy, we believe a number of companies are on the cusp of gaining approval for these ground-breaking, one-time treatments. We see strong potential for leading candidate products and take confidence from the recent unanimous FDA approval of Spark’s Luxturna product. FDA approval of Luxturna. In December 2017, Spark’s lead product, Luxturna, gained FDA approval for the treatment of inherited retinal disease.””
Other equities research analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. Royal Bank of Canada reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Spark Therapeutics in a report on Wednesday, October 25th. SunTrust Banks set a $101.00 price target on shares of Spark Therapeutics and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, October 16th. Sanford C. Bernstein set a $71.00 price target on shares of Spark Therapeutics and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, December 13th. Cantor Fitzgerald set a $105.00 price target on shares of Spark Therapeutics and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Monday, December 11th. Finally, Raymond James Financial reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $75.00 price target on shares of Spark Therapeutics in a report on Thursday, December 7th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, four have given a hold rating and eighteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Spark Therapeutics presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $73.73.
In related news, insider Katherine A. High sold 5,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, November 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $71.32, for a total transaction of $356,600.00. Following the sale, the insider now owns 215,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $15,333,800. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CFO Stephen W. Webster sold 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $70.14, for a total transaction of $701,400.00. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 12,500 shares in the company, valued at approximately $876,750. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 15,018 shares of company stock worth $1,058,834 in the last ninety days. Insiders own 7.30% of the company’s stock.
A number of large investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. BlackRock Inc. boosted its stake in Spark Therapeutics by 1.4% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 2,650,258 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $136,277,000 after acquiring an additional 35,801 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in Spark Therapeutics by 5.3% during the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,924,463 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $114,968,000 after acquiring an additional 96,803 shares in the last quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its stake in Spark Therapeutics by 15.0% during the third quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 1,848,988 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $164,986,000 after acquiring an additional 241,016 shares in the last quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC boosted its stake in Spark Therapeutics by 46.4% during the third quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 756,088 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $67,413,000 after acquiring an additional 239,723 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Gilder Gagnon Howe & Co. LLC bought a new stake in Spark Therapeutics during the fourth quarter worth about $28,188,000. 95.87% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
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Spark Therapeutics Company Profile
Spark Therapeutics, Inc is a gene therapy company. The Company focuses on treating orphan diseases. It has a pipeline of product candidates targeting multiple rare blinding conditions, hematologic disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. Its pipeline includes a product candidate targeting choroideremia (CHM), which is in a Phase I/II clinical trial and a product candidate for hemophilia A, which is in a Phase I/II clinical trial.
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