PLx Pharma (NASDAQ:PLXP) and Sunesis Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:SNSS) are both small-cap medical companies, but which is the better stock? We will contrast the two companies based on the strength of their analyst recommendations, earnings, institutional ownership, dividends, risk, profitability and valuation.

Profitability

This table compares PLx Pharma and Sunesis Pharmaceuticals’ net margins, return on equity and return on assets.

Net Margins Return on Equity Return on Assets
PLx Pharma 1.09% -186.01% -56.05%
Sunesis Pharmaceuticals N/A N/A -123.92%

Risk and Volatility

PLx Pharma has a beta of 5.33, suggesting that its share price is 433% more volatile than the S&P 500. Comparatively, Sunesis Pharmaceuticals has a beta of 2.66, suggesting that its share price is 166% more volatile than the S&P 500.

Earnings and Valuation

This table compares PLx Pharma and Sunesis Pharmaceuticals’ gross revenue, earnings per share and valuation.

Gross Revenue Price/Sales Ratio Net Income Earnings Per Share Price/Earnings Ratio
PLx Pharma $750,000.00 64.18 $900,000.00 ($1.35) -4.07
Sunesis Pharmaceuticals $240,000.00 323.81 -$26.61 million ($0.75) -1.53

PLx Pharma has higher revenue and earnings than Sunesis Pharmaceuticals. PLx Pharma is trading at a lower price-to-earnings ratio than Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, indicating that it is currently the more affordable of the two stocks.

Analyst Ratings

This is a breakdown of recent ratings and recommmendations for PLx Pharma and Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, as provided by MarketBeat.com.

Sell Ratings Hold Ratings Buy Ratings Strong Buy Ratings Rating Score
PLx Pharma 0 1 2 0 2.67
Sunesis Pharmaceuticals 0 2 1 0 2.33

Sunesis Pharmaceuticals has a consensus price target of $3.25, suggesting a potential upside of 182.61%. Given Sunesis Pharmaceuticals’ higher possible upside, analysts plainly believe Sunesis Pharmaceuticals is more favorable than PLx Pharma.

Institutional & Insider Ownership

24.2% of PLx Pharma shares are held by institutional investors. Comparatively, 22.8% of Sunesis Pharmaceuticals shares are held by institutional investors. 7.2% of PLx Pharma shares are held by insiders. Comparatively, 7.5% of Sunesis Pharmaceuticals shares are held by insiders. Strong institutional ownership is an indication that large money managers, endowments and hedge funds believe a stock is poised for long-term growth.

Summary

PLx Pharma beats Sunesis Pharmaceuticals on 8 of the 14 factors compared between the two stocks.

About PLx Pharma

PLx Pharma Inc., a late-stage specialty pharmaceutical company, focuses on developing non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and other analgesics. The company's lead product candidates are Aspertec 81 mg and 325 mg, which are novel formulations of aspirin that use the PLxGuard delivery system to reduce acute gastrointestinal (GI) side effects while providing antiplatelet effectiveness for cardiovascular disease prevention. Its product pipeline also includes other oral NSAIDs using the PLxGuard delivery system, including PL1200 Ibuprofen 200 mg, a clinical-stage GI-safer ibuprofen product for pain and inflammation. The company was founded in 2002 and is headquartered in Houston, Texas.

About Sunesis Pharmaceuticals

Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, focuses on the development and commercialization of oncology therapeutics for the treatment of solid and hematologic cancers. Its lead program is vecabrutinib, a non-covalently binding inhibitor of Bruton's tyrosine kinase (BTK), which is in Phase 1b/2 clinical trial in B-cell malignancies. The company also engages in developing TAK-580, a pan-Raf inhibitor program in combination with various anticancer agents for the treatment of advanced solid tumor cancers in adult patients; SNS-510, which is in preclinical pharmacology and toxicology studies for the treatment of solid tumor and hematologic malignancies; and vosaroxin, an anticancer quinolone derivative for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML). In addition, it is developing vosaroxin, which is in Phase 2 trial with decitabine for treatment of diagnosed acute AML or myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS); Phase 1/2 trial with azacitidine for treatment of MDS; Phase 2 trial with infusional cytarabine for treatment of AML; Phase 1/2 trial in adult patients with previously treated intermediate-2 or high-risk MDS; and Phase 1/2 trial with cytarabine tested as consolidation therapy. The company has a collaboration agreement with Biogen Idec MA, Inc. to discover, develop, and commercialize small molecule BTK inhibitors; and license agreement with Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited to develop and commercialize preclinical inhibitors of phosphoinositide-dependent kinase-1. Sunesis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. was founded in 1998 and is headquartered in South San Francisco, California.

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