O Keefe Stevens Advisory Inc. Invests $282,000 in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

O Keefe Stevens Advisory Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) in the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The institutional investor acquired 3,651 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $282,000.

Other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the company. Acropolis Investment Management LLC increased its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 4.2% in the first quarter. Acropolis Investment Management LLC now owns 3,056 shares of the company’s stock valued at $235,000 after purchasing an additional 122 shares during the last quarter. D Orazio & Associates Inc. raised its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 20.3% during the first quarter. D Orazio & Associates Inc. now owns 722 shares of the company’s stock worth $56,000 after acquiring an additional 122 shares in the last quarter. Successful Portfolios LLC increased its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 1.7% during the 1st quarter. Successful Portfolios LLC now owns 7,696 shares of the company’s stock valued at $592,000 after purchasing an additional 125 shares during the period. Eagle Ridge Investment Management increased its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 2.4% during the 1st quarter. Eagle Ridge Investment Management now owns 5,417 shares of the company’s stock valued at $417,000 after purchasing an additional 125 shares during the period. Finally, Abbrea Capital LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.3% during the 1st quarter. Abbrea Capital LLC now owns 44,825 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,476,000 after buying an additional 128 shares in the last quarter. 74.33% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

MRK has been the subject of several research analyst reports. Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $95.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Monday, May 4th. Barclays dropped their price target on Merck & Co., Inc. from $93.00 to $90.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a research report on Wednesday, April 29th. Guggenheim dropped their target price on Merck & Co., Inc. from $101.00 to $93.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Wednesday, April 29th. SVB Leerink decreased their price target on Merck & Co., Inc. from $98.00 to $95.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, April 29th. Finally, Morgan Stanley reissued a “buy” rating and set a $89.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Tuesday, June 23rd. One investment analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average price target of $94.15.

In related news, Director Wendell P. Weeks sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $76.02, for a total transaction of $380,100.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 5,100 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $387,702. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this link. 0.28% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

MRK traded down $1.02 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $77.70. The company had a trading volume of 4,152,740 shares, compared to its average volume of 10,337,286. The company has a quick ratio of 0.87, a current ratio of 1.11 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82. The business has a 50-day moving average of $78.23 and a two-hundred day moving average of $81.49. The company has a market cap of $198.57 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.92, a P/E/G ratio of 2.22 and a beta of 0.48. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 1 year low of $65.25 and a 1 year high of $92.64.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, April 28th. The company reported $1.50 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.34 by $0.16. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 52.46% and a net margin of 21.10%. The company had revenue of $12.06 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $11.46 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.22 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 11.5% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities research analysts predict that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 5.3 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, July 7th. Investors of record on Monday, June 15th were paid a dividend of $0.61 per share. This represents a $2.44 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.14%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, June 12th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s payout ratio is presently 47.01%.

Merck & Co., Inc. Company Profile

Merck & Co, Inc provides healthcare solutions worldwide. It operates through four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services, and Alliances. The company offers therapeutic and preventive agents to treat cardiovascular, type 2 diabetes, chronic hepatitis C virus, HIV-1 infection, intra-abdominal, fungal infection, insomnia, and inflammatory diseases.

Further Reading: Market Timing

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

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