NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals  (VRX) were surging 17.94% to $21.04 on heavy trading volume late Tuesday afternoon as the company is in discussions to sell its Salix stomach-drug business for roughly $10 billion, the Wall Street Journal reports. 

The stock tumbled earlier today as the Canadian drugmaker's former CEO Michael Pearson and ex-CFO Howard Schiller are reportedly the focus of a Department of Justice investigation into accounting fraud. 

About 25.18 million shares of Valeant have been traded so far today, well above the company's average trading volume of roughly 13.32 million shares per day. 

Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates the stock as a "sell" with a ratings score of D.

Valeant's weaknesses include its deteriorating net income, generally high debt management risk, disappointing return on equity, generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself and feeble growth in its earnings per share.

You can view the full analysis from the report here: VRX

TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon. Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this article's author.

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