Vital Therapies, Inc. (VTL) Stock: A Biotechnology Stock That’s Seeing Strong Declines


Vital Therapies, Inc. (VTL) is working its way for to the bottom in the market in today’s trading session. The company, one that is focused in the biotech sector, is currently trading at $0.21 after tumbling -5.02% so far in today’s session. As it relates to biotech stocks, there are a number of factors that have the potential to lead to declines in the market. One of the most common is news. Here are the recent headlines associated with VTL:

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Mar-04-19 04:10PM Vital Therapies Announces 2018 Financial Results
Feb-26-19 09:18AM SHAREHOLDER ALERT: Monteverde & Associates PC Announces an Investigation of Vital Therapies, Inc. – VTL
Jan-07-19 04:00AM Vital Therapies and Immunic Therapeutics Announce Transaction to Create Leading Inflammatory and Autoimmune Disease Company
Nov-07-18 06:29PM Vital Therapies: 3Q Earnings Snapshot
06:20PM Vital Therapies Announces Third Quarter 2018 Financial Results

Nonetheless, when making an investing decision, prospective investors should focus on far more than news, especially in the speculative biotech industry. Here’s what’s going on with Vital Therapies, Inc..

Performance Trends That We’ve Seen From VTL

While a single session decline, like what we’re seeing from Vital Therapies, Inc. might make some investors tremble, a single session decline by itself shouldn’t be the reason for a decision to, or not to, invest in a stock. It is generally a good idea to look into trends experienced by the stock for a period longer than a single session. When it comes to VTL, below are the movements that investors have seen:

  • Past 5 Trading Sessions – Throughout the last week, VTL has seen a change in price in the amount of -7.12%.
  • Past 30 Days – The return from Vital Therapies, Inc. in the last 30 days comes to -5.74%.
  • Past Quarter – Throughout the past quarter, the stock has produced a return on investment of -18.15%
  • Past Six Months – In the last six months, we’ve seen a performance that works out to -39.97% from the company.
  • Year To Date – Since the the first trading session of this year VTL has resulted in a ROI of 12.78%.
  • Full Year – Finally, over the past year, investors have seen performance that comes to -96.47% from VTL. Throughout this period, the stock has traded at a high of -97.85% and a low of 39.14%.

Ratios To Pay Attention To

Looking at a few key ratios associated with a company generally gives prospective investors a look of just how dangerous and/or rewarding a stock pick might be. Here are a few of the key ratios to think about when digging into VTL.

Short Ratio – The short ratio is a measure of short interest. As the short ratio climbs, it shows that more investors have a belief that the value of the stock is headed for declines. Throughout the sector, biotech stocks can have a higher short ratio. However, we tend to see a lot of short squeezes in the sector. Nonetheless, when it comes to Vital Therapies, Inc., it’s short ratio is 2.95.

Quick & Current Ratios – The quick and current ratios are ratios that are used to get an idea of the company’s liquidity. Basically, they measure whether or not a company can cover its debts when they come due based on quick assets or current assets. Because many biotech companies are reliant on the continuation of investor support, the quick and current ratios can look bad. Nonetheless, some gems in the biotech space come with good current and quick ratios. As far as VTL, the quick and current ratios come to 5.70 and 5.70 respectively.  

Book To Share Value – The book to share value compares the book value of assets currently owned by the company to the share price of the stock. In this particular case, that ratio is 0.29.

Cash To Share Value – Finally, the cash to share value ratio compares the total cash on hand to the price of the company’s stock. Several early stage biotechnology companies struggle to keep cash on hand. So, if you’re interested in a biotechnology stock, this is an important ratio to consider. In the case of VTL, the cash to share value comes to 0.28.

What Analysts Think About Vital Therapies, Inc.

Although it’s not a good idea to blindly follow the opinions of analysts, it is a smart idea to use their analysis when validating your own opinions before making investment decisions in the biotech industry. Below you’ll find the recent moves that we have seen from analysts with regard to VTL.

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Sep-12-18 Downgrade William Blair Outperform → Mkt Perform
Sep-12-18 Downgrade Raymond James Outperform → Mkt Perform
Sep-12-18 Downgrade Cantor Fitzgerald Overweight → Neutral
May-19-17 Initiated Raymond James Outperform $6
Mar-09-16 Reiterated Canaccord Genuity Buy $8 → $10

Investors Tend To Follow The Big Money

An interesting fact that I’ve learned in my brief period here has been that smart money tends to follow big money. So, investors that want to keep their investments relatively safe will watch trades made by institutions and insiders of the company. With that said, where is the big money when it comes to VTL? Here’s the scoop:

Institutions own 15.70% of the company. Institutional interest has moved by -21.87% over the past three months. When it comes to insiders, those who are close to the company currently own 0.10% percent of VTL shares. Institutions have seen ownership changes of an accumulative -80.66% over the last three months.

Float Information

Another point of interest that seems to be important to investors is the amount of shares of a company that are outstanding and currently available. At the moment, there are 46.86M shares of Vital Therapies, Inc. outstanding. Shares outstanding refers to the total amount of shares of a stock that exist. As far as the float goes, or the amount of shares that are actually available on the retail market, VTL has a float of 41.81M.

Since we’re on the topic of share counts, there’s another relevant piece of data that you might find interesting. That would be the short percentage of the float. Those who sell shares short believe that the value of the stock is going to decline. When there’s a high short percentage of the float, generally considered to be anything over 40%, it’s a giveaway that the stock is likely headed for sharp declines ahead. Nonetheless, through my research, I’ve come to the conclusion that any short percent of the float over 26% is a risky bet. When it comes to VTL, the short percent of the float is 10.30%.

Financial Results And Expectations

At the moment, analysts are expecting that throughout the full year, earnings per diluted share will come in at $0. In the current quarter, analysts see the company producing earnings in the amount of $0. Over the last 5 years, VTL has generated revenue in the amount of $0 with earnings coming in at 12.00%. On a quarter over quarter basis, earnings have seen movement of 83.20% and revenue has seen movement of 0.

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