Analyst Update: Catalyst Pharmaceuticals Inc, Applied Optoelectronics Inc, and BioTelemetry, Inc.

Analysts are weighing in on Catalyst Pharmaceuticals Inc (CPRX), Applied Optoelectronics Inc (AAOI), and BioTelemetry, Inc. (BEAT)

by Kirra Fedyszyn

Published on Oct 5, 2016 at 3:08 PM

Analysts are weighing in on biotech stock Catalyst Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:CPRX), fiber-optics expert Applied Optoelectronics Inc (NASDAQ:AAOI), and medical device maker BioTelemetry, Inc. (NASDAQ:BEAT). Here's a quick roundup of today's brokerage notes on CPRX, AAOI, and BEAT.

  • CPRX has soared 27.7% to $1.43, after Piper Jaffray upgraded the stock's rating to "overweight" from "neutral," and quadrupled its price target to $4 -- a 180% premium over current trading levels, and in annual-high territory. The brokerage firm specifically cited reduced risk for Catalyst Pharmaceuticals Inc and improved visibility for the company to submit a marketing application on its neuromuscular disorder treatment, Firdapse. It's been a rocky year for the stock, which is still down nearly 42% in 2016. But CPRX has been fighting its way higher in recent months, and looks to be on track to finish the week above its 50-week moving average for the first time in over a year. This is not a great development for short sellers, as short interest jumped by more than 10% over the last two reporting periods, and now represents 3.5% of CPRX's total float.
  • AAOI also got a boost from Piper Jaffray, which raised its price target on the stock to $27 from $24. This upbeat attention has the stock 9.8% higher at $23.75, after hitting a new two-year high of $24.18 earlier in the session. Short sellers could be getting burned today, as more than one-quarter of Applied Optoelectronics Inc's available float is currently tied up in these pessimistic bets. At the equity's average daily volumes, it would take more than a week to cover all the shorted shares. It's curious that there would be this many bearish holdouts on the stock. After all, AAOI has nearly tripled on the charts since its May lows, just above the $8 mark.
  • Lake Street reiterated its "buy" rating and $24 price target on BEAT, noting the upbeat implications of Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield covering the company's Mobile Cardiac Telemetry (MCT). An analyst from the brokerage firm noted the new coverage is "a major positive for BioTelemetry, who will likely gain several million dollars in revenue in 2017 as a result of being able to access this large patient base" -- also adding, "we think the company can continue to generate above trend revenue growth into 2017." BioTelemetry, Inc. has added a hefty 77% year-to-date, tapped a fresh seven-year high of $21.68 earlier, and was last seen up 12.8% at $20.68. Unsurprisingly, the stock is surrounded with optimism. Short interest fell by 63% during the last two reporting periods to account for less than 2% of BEAT's total float. Plus, every analyst covering the security recommends buying the shares.
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