MA Private Wealth trimmed its position in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 9.1% in the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 2,559 shares of the company’s stock after selling 257 shares during the period. MA Private Wealth’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $215,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

A number of other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in MRK. Gillespie Robinson & Grimm Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.3% in the third quarter. Gillespie Robinson & Grimm Inc. now owns 198,682 shares of the company’s stock worth $16,725,000 after buying an additional 646 shares during the last quarter. Founders Capital Management raised its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 94.2% in the third quarter. Founders Capital Management now owns 26,440 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,226,000 after buying an additional 12,825 shares during the last quarter. Bogart Wealth LLC raised its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.7% in the third quarter. Bogart Wealth LLC now owns 33,421 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,813,000 after buying an additional 248 shares during the last quarter. American National Bank purchased a new position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in the third quarter worth $67,000. Finally, Home Federal Bank of Tennessee raised its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 1.3% in the third quarter. Home Federal Bank of Tennessee now owns 11,315 shares of the company’s stock worth $952,000 after buying an additional 150 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 74.97% of the company’s stock.

In other Merck & Co., Inc. news, EVP Richard R. Deluca sold 6,427 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction on Friday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.09, for a total value of $546,873.43. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 103,223 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $8,783,245.07. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. 0.27% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock traded up $0.21 during trading on Thursday, hitting $84.39. 192,732 shares of the company’s stock were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 8,735,727. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82, a quick ratio of 0.92 and a current ratio of 1.21. The business has a 50-day simple moving average of $84.62 and a 200-day simple moving average of $82.22. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 52-week low of $66.10 and a 52-week high of $87.35. The stock has a market capitalization of $216.07 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.40, a PEG ratio of 1.71 and a beta of 0.53.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, July 30th. The company reported $1.30 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.16 by $0.14. Merck & Co., Inc. had a net margin of 21.10% and a return on equity of 43.34%. The firm had revenue of $11.76 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $10.94 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.06 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was up 12.4% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts anticipate that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.92 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 7th. Shareholders of record on Monday, September 16th were issued a $0.55 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, September 13th. This represents a $2.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.61%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s payout ratio is 50.69%.

MRK has been the subject of a number of research analyst reports. Citigroup raised their price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $84.00 to $95.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, June 21st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Argus raised their price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. to $105.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 7th. Leerink Swann initiated coverage on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Thursday, August 15th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $103.00 price target for the company. Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $95.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Wednesday, August 7th. Finally, Bank of America set a $97.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, July 11th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have assigned a hold rating and seventeen have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $93.29.

Merck & Co., Inc. 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.

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

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