Nektar Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NKTR) shares traded up 2.6% on Monday . The company traded as high as $17.95 and last traded at $17.71, with a volume of 443,620 shares. The stock had previously closed at $17.26.

A number of research analysts have weighed in on the stock. Piper Jaffray Cos. reissued an “overweight” rating and issued a $21.00 target price (up from $17.00) on shares of Nektar Therapeutics in a research note on Friday, August 5th. Brean Capital reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $18.00 target price on shares of Nektar Therapeutics in a research note on Friday, August 5th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Nektar Therapeutics from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, August 1st. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, one has given a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $19.40.

The stock’s market cap is $2.55 billion. The company’s 50 day moving average is $16.33 and its 200-day moving average is $14.49.

Nektar Therapeutics (NASDAQ:NKTR) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, August 3rd. The biopharmaceutical company reported ($0.36) earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of ($0.33) by $0.03. The business had revenue of $32.77 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $34.17 million. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned ($0.40) EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 44.6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Nektar Therapeutics will post ($1.11) earnings per share for the current year.

In other news, Director Robert Chess sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of $14.10, for a total value of $70,500.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CAO Jillian B. Thomsen sold 100,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, July 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $15.09, for a total transaction of $1,509,000.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief accounting officer now owns 106,809 shares in the company, valued at $1,611,747.81. The disclosure for this sale can be found here.

Several hedge funds have added to or reduced their stakes in NKTR. New York State Common Retirement Fund raised its stake in Nektar Therapeutics by 1.9% in the fourth quarter. New York State Common Retirement Fund now owns 177,127 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $2,985,000 after buying an additional 3,300 shares in the last quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. raised its stake in Nektar Therapeutics by 4.9% in the fourth quarter. Principal Financial Group Inc. now owns 1,208,204 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $20,359,000 after buying an additional 56,510 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Advisors LLC raised its stake in Nektar Therapeutics by 2.0% in the fourth quarter. BlackRock Advisors LLC now owns 2,342,182 shares of the biopharmaceutical company’s stock valued at $39,466,000 after buying an additional 45,091 shares in the last quarter.

Nektar Therapeutics is a biopharmaceutical company. The Company is engaged in the development of a pipeline of drug candidates that utilize its PEGylation and advanced polymer conjugate technology platforms, which are designed to enable the development of new molecular entities that target known mechanisms of action.

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