Spark Investment Management LLC lessened its holdings in shares of Merck & Company, Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 1.4% during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 79,600 shares of the company’s stock after selling 1,100 shares during the quarter. Spark Investment Management LLC’s holdings in Merck & were worth $5,101,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of MRK. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board increased its holdings in shares of Merck & by 70.4% during the 1st quarter. Canada Pension Plan Investment Board now owns 5,568,791 shares of the company’s stock worth $353,841,000 after buying an additional 2,300,200 shares during the last quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC increased its holdings in shares of Merck & by 23.7% during the 1st quarter. AQR Capital Management LLC now owns 8,146,594 shares of the company’s stock worth $517,635,000 after buying an additional 1,561,853 shares during the last quarter. Karp Capital Management Corp acquired a new stake in shares of Merck & during the 1st quarter worth $94,200,000. Columbus Circle Investors increased its holdings in shares of Merck & by 529.0% during the 1st quarter. Columbus Circle Investors now owns 1,345,334 shares of the company’s stock worth $85,483,000 after buying an additional 1,131,452 shares during the last quarter. Finally, CIBC World Markets Inc. increased its holdings in shares of Merck & by 536.0% during the 1st quarter. CIBC World Markets Inc. now owns 1,290,373 shares of the company’s stock worth $81,990,000 after buying an additional 1,087,497 shares during the last quarter. 72.91% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
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MRK has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Cowen and Company restated a “hold” rating and set a $70.00 price objective on shares of Merck & in a report on Friday, September 1st. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Merck & from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 2nd. Credit Suisse Group restated a “buy” rating on shares of Merck & in a report on Tuesday, June 13th. Jefferies Group LLC restated a “sell” rating and set a $52.00 price objective on shares of Merck & in a report on Sunday, August 20th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (The) restated a “neutral” rating and set a $74.00 price objective (up from $70.00) on shares of Merck & in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $69.81.
Shares of Merck & Company, Inc. (NYSE:MRK) opened at 64.55 on Monday. Merck & Company, Inc. has a 52 week low of $58.29 and a 52 week high of $66.80. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $64.27 and its 200 day moving average price is $63.68. The firm has a market capitalization of $176.05 billion, a P/E ratio of 34.95 and a beta of 0.80.
Merck & (NYSE:MRK) last announced its earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $1.01 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $0.87 by $0.14. The firm had revenue of $9.93 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.75 billion. Merck & had a net margin of 17.14% and a return on equity of 26.02%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up .9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.93 EPS. On average, analysts predict that Merck & Company, Inc. will post $3.87 EPS for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, October 6th. Investors of record on Friday, September 15th were issued a $0.47 dividend. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $1.88 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.91%. Merck &’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 76.11%.
Merck & 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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