Lazard Asset Management LLC lowered its holdings in Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ:VRTX) by 55.9% in the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 201,167 shares of the pharmaceutical company’s stock after selling 254,906 shares during the period. Lazard Asset Management LLC owned approximately 0.08% of Vertex Pharmaceuticals worth $25,924,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in VRTX. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America increased its position in shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals by 0.6% in the first quarter. Guardian Life Insurance Co. of America now owns 956 shares of the pharmaceutical company’s stock worth $105,000 after acquiring an additional 6 shares in the last quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. increased its position in shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals by 15.4% in the second quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. now owns 988 shares of the pharmaceutical company’s stock worth $127,000 after acquiring an additional 132 shares in the last quarter. FNY Partners Fund LP increased its position in shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals by 900.0% in the second quarter. FNY Partners Fund LP now owns 1,000 shares of the pharmaceutical company’s stock worth $128,000 after acquiring an additional 900 shares in the last quarter. Dupont Capital Management Corp acquired a new stake in shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals in the second quarter worth $186,000. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue acquired a new stake in shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals in the second quarter worth $197,000. 92.85% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated (NASDAQ VRTX) opened at 152.72 on Thursday. Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated has a 12-month low of $71.46 and a 12-month high of $167.85. The company has a 50 day moving average of $154.59 and a 200-day moving average of $128.57. The firm has a market cap of $38.50 billion, a PE ratio of 146.71 and a beta of 1.75.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:VRTX) last issued its earnings results on Wednesday, July 26th. The pharmaceutical company reported $0.39 EPS for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.06 by $0.33. Vertex Pharmaceuticals had a net margin of 12.05% and a return on equity of 4.64%. The company had revenue of $544.10 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $489.95 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.24 EPS. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 26.1% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities research analysts forecast that Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated will post $1.62 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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In other news, CMO Jeffrey Chodakewitz sold 3,438 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, July 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $127.80, for a total value of $439,376.40. Following the sale, the chief marketing officer now owns 125,949 shares in the company, valued at approximately $16,096,282.20. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CEO Jeffrey M. Leiden sold 216,624 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, July 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $160.96, for a total transaction of $34,867,799.04. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 400,266 shares in the company, valued at approximately $64,426,815.36. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 518,358 shares of company stock worth $83,072,822 in the last 90 days. 1.80% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. Cowen and Company reissued a “buy” rating on shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals in a research report on Tuesday, August 1st. BidaskClub lowered shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Saturday, August 19th. Needham & Company LLC restated a “buy” rating and issued a $195.00 target price on shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals in a research note on Sunday. BMO Capital Markets restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $182.00 target price (up from $180.00) on shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Finally, Maxim Group set a $195.00 target price on shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twenty-two have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $163.35.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Company Profile

Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated is engaged in discovering, developing, manufacturing and commercializing medicines for serious diseases. The Company is focused on developing and commercializing therapies for the treatment of cystic fibrosis (CF) and advancing its research and development programs in other indications.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Vertex Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:VRTX)

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