Meag Munich Ergo Kapitalanlagegesellschaft MBH lowered its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 6.0% in the third quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The firm owned 278,629 shares of the company’s stock after selling 17,665 shares during the period. Meag Munich Ergo Kapitalanlagegesellschaft MBH’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $17,969,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Other large investors have also made changes to their positions in the company. Stelac Advisory Services LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in the second quarter valued at $104,000. Perennial Advisors LLC grew its position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 10.7% in the second quarter. Perennial Advisors LLC now owns 1,626 shares of the company’s stock valued at $104,000 after purchasing an additional 157 shares during the period. Cascade Investment Advisors Inc. grew its position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 15.5% in the second quarter. Cascade Investment Advisors Inc. now owns 1,727 shares of the company’s stock valued at $111,000 after purchasing an additional 232 shares during the period. Solaris Asset Management LLC grew its position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 6.3% in the second quarter. Solaris Asset Management LLC now owns 1,940 shares of the company’s stock valued at $124,000 after purchasing an additional 115 shares during the period. Finally, Barnett & Company Inc. grew its position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 481.6% in the second quarter. Barnett & Company Inc. now owns 2,053 shares of the company’s stock valued at $132,000 after purchasing an additional 1,700 shares during the period. 73.63% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
In other news, Director Thomas H. Glocer sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $56.20, for a total value of $281,000.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. 0.25% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE MRK) opened at $58.66 on Friday. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 1 year low of $53.63 and a 1 year high of $66.80. The company has a quick ratio of 1.16, a current ratio of 1.43 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.57. The firm has a market capitalization of $159,990.00, a PE ratio of 56.95, a PEG ratio of 2.84 and a beta of 0.76.
Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last issued its earnings results on Friday, October 27th. The company reported $1.11 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.03 by $0.08. Merck & Co., Inc. had a negative return on equity of 0.58% and a negative net margin of 0.49%. The company had revenue of $10.33 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.54 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $1.07 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was down 2.0% compared to the same quarter last year. research analysts expect that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 3.95 EPS for the current fiscal year.
Merck & Co., Inc. announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock buyback program on Tuesday, November 28th that authorizes the company to repurchase $10.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, January 8th. Stockholders of record on Friday, December 15th were given a $0.48 dividend. This is an increase from Merck & Co., Inc.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.47. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, December 14th. This represents a $1.92 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.27%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 186.41%.
MRK has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. BMO Capital Markets set a $70.00 price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 11th. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $70.00 price target on Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Sunday, October 29th. Citigroup raised Merck & Co., Inc. from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 price target for the company in a research report on Wednesday, October 18th. UBS Group lowered their price target on Merck & Co., Inc. from $72.00 to $67.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Monday, October 30th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein reissued a “buy” rating and set a $64.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Wednesday, November 15th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $66.06.
Merck & Co., Inc. Company Profile
Merck & Co, Inc is a global healthcare company. The Company offers health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies and animal health products. It operates through four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services and Alliances. The Company’s Pharmaceutical segment includes human health pharmaceutical and vaccine products marketed either directly by the Company or through joint ventures.
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