AcelRx Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ACRX) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report issued on Thursday.

According to Zacks, “AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc., is a specialty pharmaceutical company focused on the development and commercialization of therapies for the treatment of pain. The Company product candidates comprises: ARX-01 or the Sufentanil NanoTab PCA System; ARX-02 or the Sufentanil NanoTab BTP Management System; and ARX-03 or the Sufentanil/Triazolam NanoTab which are in their development stage. Its product ARX-01 is focused on acute post-operative pain, ARX-02 is focused on the treatment of cancer breakthrough pain and ARX-03 is focused on providing mild sedation, anxiety reduction, and pain relief to patients undergoing painful procedures in a physician’s office. AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is headquartered in Redwood City, California. “

Several other equities analysts also recently weighed in on the company. Cantor Fitzgerald set a $6.00 price target on AcelRx Pharmaceuticals and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, October 8th. LADENBURG THALM/SH SH started coverage on AcelRx Pharmaceuticals in a research report on Thursday, August 16th. They set a “buy” rating and a $7.00 price target for the company. HC Wainwright reissued a “buy” rating on shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals in a research report on Tuesday, August 7th. Jefferies Financial Group raised AcelRx Pharmaceuticals from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $8.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, October 15th. Finally, Royal Bank of Canada set a $7.00 price target on AcelRx Pharmaceuticals and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, October 22nd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have given a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $7.93.

NASDAQ ACRX opened at $3.28 on Thursday. AcelRx Pharmaceuticals has a 1-year low of $1.65 and a 1-year high of $5.05. The company has a market capitalization of $219.77 million, a P/E ratio of -2.98 and a beta of 2.03.

AcelRx Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ACRX) last released its quarterly earnings data on Monday, November 5th. The specialty pharmaceutical company reported ($0.21) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of ($0.20) by ($0.01). The company had revenue of $0.38 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.10 million. As a group, equities analysts predict that AcelRx Pharmaceuticals will post -0.86 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other AcelRx Pharmaceuticals news, insider Badri N. Dasu sold 28,351 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $5.00, for a total transaction of $141,755.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 54,061 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $270,305. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this link. Also, insider Lawrence G. Hamel sold 6,953 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, September 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $4.50, for a total value of $31,288.50. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 24,371 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $109,669.50. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Company insiders own 25.50% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Lincoln Capital Corp purchased a new stake in shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals in the second quarter valued at $116,000. Cedar Wealth Management LLC grew its position in shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals by 182.5% in the third quarter. Cedar Wealth Management LLC now owns 33,895 shares of the specialty pharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $130,000 after purchasing an additional 21,895 shares during the period. Creative Planning grew its position in shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals by 256.1% in the third quarter. Creative Planning now owns 45,222 shares of the specialty pharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $174,000 after purchasing an additional 32,522 shares during the period. Granite Investment Partners LLC purchased a new stake in shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals in the second quarter valued at $182,000. Finally, Northern Trust Corp grew its position in shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals by 60.8% in the first quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 91,481 shares of the specialty pharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $192,000 after purchasing an additional 34,584 shares during the period. 8.58% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About AcelRx Pharmaceuticals

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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