Short Interest in Verastem Inc (VSTM) Expands By 13.1%

Verastem Inc (NASDAQ:VSTM) was the recipient of a significant increase in short interest during the month of October. As of October 31st, there was short interest totalling 18,654,118 shares, an increase of 13.1% from the October 15th total of 16,498,651 shares. Based on an average trading volume of 2,428,622 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is currently 7.7 days. Currently, 26.0% of the shares of the company are short sold.

In related news, CEO Robert Forrester bought 10,500 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, September 27th. The shares were purchased at an average cost of $7.00 per share, for a total transaction of $73,500.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the chief executive officer now directly owns 209,234 shares in the company, valued at $1,464,638. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Michael Kauffman bought 4,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, September 28th. The stock was bought at an average price of $7.49 per share, for a total transaction of $29,960.00. Following the completion of the purchase, the director now owns 4,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $29,960. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders acquired 19,500 shares of company stock worth $139,420. Corporate insiders own 6.51% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in VSTM. FMR LLC lifted its stake in shares of Verastem by 2,520.2% during the 2nd quarter. FMR LLC now owns 4,058,097 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $27,920,000 after buying an additional 3,903,218 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Verastem by 240.6% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 3,542,912 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $24,376,000 after buying an additional 2,502,853 shares in the last quarter. Northern Trust Corp lifted its stake in shares of Verastem by 558.1% during the 2nd quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 625,158 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $4,301,000 after buying an additional 530,166 shares in the last quarter. EAM Investors LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Verastem during the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $3,288,000. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its stake in shares of Verastem by 820.5% during the 2nd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 352,720 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $2,426,000 after buying an additional 314,401 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 43.40% of the company’s stock.

Shares of VSTM stock opened at $5.51 on Friday. The company has a market cap of $374.58 million, a P/E ratio of -3.13 and a beta of 3.14. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.19, a quick ratio of 7.70 and a current ratio of 7.70. Verastem has a 12 month low of $2.77 and a 12 month high of $10.35.

Verastem (NASDAQ:VSTM) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 8th. The biopharmaceutical company reported ($0.29) EPS for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.43) by $0.14. The business had revenue of $15.51 million for the quarter. As a group, research analysts forecast that Verastem will post -1.64 EPS for the current year.

A number of research analysts have weighed in on the stock. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Verastem from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 28th. HC Wainwright boosted their target price on shares of Verastem to $15.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, September 25th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Verastem from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $9.00 target price on the stock in a research note on Friday, July 20th. Raymond James boosted their target price on shares of Verastem from $7.00 to $12.00 in a research note on Friday, August 10th. Finally, BTIG Research assumed coverage on shares of Verastem in a research note on Friday, July 13th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $17.00 target price on the stock. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, ten have issued a buy rating and one has assigned a strong buy rating to the stock. Verastem currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $14.60.

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About Verastem

Verastem, Inc, a biopharmaceutical company, focuses on developing and commercializing drugs for the treatment of cancer. Its programs target the focal adhesion kinase (FAK) and the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) signaling pathways. The company's lead FAK inhibitor is defactinib, an orally available candidate for combination therapy with immuno-oncology agents and other anti-cancer compounds.

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