Uncovering the next great stocks: TransEnterix, Inc. (TRXC), AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ACRX)

The shares of TransEnterix, Inc. have increased by more than 38.34% this year alone. The shares recently went up by 10.33% or $0.25 and now trades at $2.67. The shares of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ACRX), has jumped by 38.27% year to date as of 05/15/2018. The shares currently trade at $2.80 and have been able to report a change of 12.00% over the past one week.

The stock of TransEnterix, Inc. and AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. were two of the most active stocks on Tueday. Investors seem to be very interested in what happens to the stocks of these two companies but do investors favor one over the other? We will analyze the growth, profitability, risk, valuation, and insider trends of both companies and see which one investors prefer.

Profitability and Returns

Growth alone cannot be used to see if the company will be valuable. Shareholders will be the losers if a company invest in ventures that aren’t profitable enough to support upbeat growth. In order for us to accurately measure profitability and return, we will be using the EBITDA margin and Return on Investment (ROI), which balances the difference in capital structure. The ROI of TRXC is -30.50% while that of ACRX is -5.90%. These figures suggest that ACRX ventures generate a higher ROI than that of TRXC.

Cash Flow

The value of a stock is ultimately determined by the amount of cash flow that the investors have available. Over the last 12 months, TRXC’s free cash flow per share is a negative -0.17, while that of ACRX is also a negative -0.1.

Liquidity and Financial Risk

The ability of a company to meet up with its short-term obligations and be able to clear its longer-term debts is measured using Liquidity and leverage ratios. The current ratio for TRXC is 5.40 and that of ACRX is 4.00. This implies that it is easier for TRXC to cover its immediate obligations over the next 12 months than ACRX.


TRXC currently trades at a P/B of 2.84, and a P/S of 53.44 while ACRX trades at a P/S of 27.40. This means that looking at the earnings, book values and sales basis, TRXC is the cheaper one. It is very obvious that earnings are the most important factors to investors, thus analysts are most likely to place their bet on the P/E.

Analyst Price Targets and Opinions

The mistake some people make is that they think a cheap stock has more value to it. In order to know the value of a stock, there is need to compare its current price to its likely trading price in the future. The price of TRXC is currently at a -35.97% to its one-year price target of 4.17. Looking at its rival pricing, ACRX is at a -36.65% relative to its price target of 4.42.

When looking at the investment recommendation on say a scale of 1 to 5 (1 being a strong buy, 3 a hold, and 5 a sell), TRXC is given a 2.00 while 2.50 placed for ACRX. This means that analysts are more bullish on the outlook for ACRX stocks.

Insider Activity and Investor Sentiment

Short interest or otherwise called the percentage of a stock’s tradable shares currently being shorted is another data that investors use to get a handle on sentiment. The short ratio for TRXC is 10.12 while that of ACRX is just 6.84. This means that analysts are more bullish on the forecast for ACRX stock.


The stock of TransEnterix, Inc. defeats that of AcelRx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. when the two are compared, with TRXC taking 4 out of the total factors that were been considered. TRXC happens to be more profitable, generates a higher ROI, has higher cash flow per share, higher liquidity and has a lower financial risk. When looking at the stock valuation, TRXC is the cheaper one on an earnings, book value and sales basis. Finally, the sentiment signal for TRXC is better on when it is viewed on short interest.

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