Amphastar Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ:AMPH) has received a consensus recommendation of “Buy” from the eight research firms that are covering the stock. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating on the company. The average 12 month price target among brokerages that have covered the stock in the last year is $20.17.

Several equities research analysts have weighed in on the stock. Jefferies Group set a $21.00 target price on shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, November 9th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $20.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Tuesday, November 8th. Piper Jaffray Cos. reiterated an “overweight” rating and set a $23.00 price objective (up from $22.00) on shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals in a research note on Wednesday, September 7th. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $17.00 price objective on shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals in a research note on Tuesday, August 9th. Finally, Needham & Company LLC lifted their price objective on shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals from $20.00 to $22.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, August 9th.

In related news, CEO Jack Y. Zhang sold 444,199 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, September 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $21.03, for a total transaction of $9,341,504.97. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 1,295,685 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $27,248,255.55. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, EVP Diane G. Gerst sold 24,046 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 19th. The stock was sold at an average price of $19.28, for a total transaction of $463,606.88. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 39,031 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $752,517.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 29.30% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of AMPH. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. boosted its position in shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals by 10.0% in the first quarter. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. now owns 277,294 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,328,000 after buying an additional 25,095 shares during the period. Emerald Acquisition Ltd. acquired a new position in shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals during the second quarter valued at about $3,227,000. California State Teachers Retirement System boosted its position in shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals by 10.8% in the second quarter. California State Teachers Retirement System now owns 74,633 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,203,000 after buying an additional 7,291 shares during the period. Essex Investment Management Co. LLC boosted its position in shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals by 236.0% in the second quarter. Essex Investment Management Co. LLC now owns 105,239 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,696,000 after buying an additional 73,922 shares during the period. Finally, JPMorgan Chase & Co. boosted its position in shares of Amphastar Pharmaceuticals by 9.1% in the second quarter. JPMorgan Chase & Co. now owns 434,207 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,999,000 after buying an additional 36,254 shares during the period. 44.18% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Amphastar Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:AMPH) opened at 21.23 on Monday. The company has a 50-day moving average of $18.90 and a 200 day moving average of $17.29. The company has a market cap of $977.07 million, a P/E ratio of 46.35 and a beta of 1.86. Amphastar Pharmaceuticals has a one year low of $10.50 and a one year high of $21.53.

Amphastar Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:AMPH) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, November 8th. The company reported $0.14 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.03 by $0.11. The company earned $64.20 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $65.12 million. Amphastar Pharmaceuticals had a net margin of 7.75% and a return on equity of 6.79%. Amphastar Pharmaceuticals’s revenue was up .5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period last year, the firm earned ($0.01) earnings per share. Analysts anticipate that Amphastar Pharmaceuticals will post $0.47 earnings per share for the current year.

About Amphastar Pharmaceuticals

Amphastar Pharmaceuticals, Inc is a specialty pharmaceutical company. The Company focuses primarily on developing, manufacturing, marketing and selling generic and injectable and inhalation products. The Company has two segments: finished pharmaceutical products and active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) products.

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