Stack Financial Management Inc Sells 2,979 Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

Stack Financial Management Inc lessened its position in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRKFree Report) by 1.3% during the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 220,617 shares of the company’s stock after selling 2,979 shares during the period. Merck & Co., Inc. accounts for 2.7% of Stack Financial Management Inc’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 11th biggest position. Stack Financial Management Inc’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $29,110,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other large investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Wellington Management Group LLP boosted its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 3.8% during the 4th quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 85,595,999 shares of the company’s stock valued at $9,331,676,000 after purchasing an additional 3,153,333 shares in the last quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 14.8% during the 4th quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 36,682,866 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,966,029,000 after purchasing an additional 4,731,152 shares in the last quarter. Norges Bank purchased a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the 4th quarter valued at about $3,108,366,000. Royal Bank of Canada lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 12.8% during the 4th quarter. Royal Bank of Canada now owns 14,972,074 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,632,255,000 after acquiring an additional 1,696,151 shares during the period. Finally, Fisher Asset Management LLC lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 1.7% during the 4th quarter. Fisher Asset Management LLC now owns 13,566,968 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,479,071,000 after acquiring an additional 228,578 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 76.07% of the company’s stock.

Merck & Co., Inc. Stock Performance

Shares of MRK stock traded down $1.61 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $124.17. The company had a trading volume of 741,589 shares, compared to its average volume of 8,411,446. The business has a fifty day moving average price of $129.05 and a 200-day moving average price of $125.26. Merck & Co., Inc. has a one year low of $99.14 and a one year high of $134.63. The firm has a market cap of $314.50 billion, a PE ratio of 139.73, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.44 and a beta of 0.38. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.77, a quick ratio of 0.99 and a current ratio of 1.25.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRKGet Free Report) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $2.07 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.94 by $0.13. Merck & Co., Inc. had a net margin of 3.76% and a return on equity of 14.05%. The firm had revenue of $15.78 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $15.21 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $1.40 earnings per share. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.9% on a year-over-year basis. Sell-side analysts predict that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 8.62 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Merck & Co., Inc. Dividend Announcement

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, July 8th. Investors of record on Monday, June 17th were given a dividend of $0.77 per share. The ex-dividend date was Monday, June 17th. This represents a $3.08 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.48%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 342.22%.

Analyst Upgrades and Downgrades

A number of brokerages recently issued reports on MRK. Argus raised shares of Merck & Co., Inc. to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, June 5th. Berenberg Bank lifted their price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $140.00 to $143.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, April 8th. Wells Fargo & Company lifted their price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $130.00 to $135.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Wednesday, March 27th. Cantor Fitzgerald reissued an “overweight” rating and set a $155.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Tuesday, June 18th. Finally, Truist Financial lifted their target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $142.00 to $143.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, April 26th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have issued a hold rating, eight have given a buy rating and two have assigned a strong buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat.com, the stock has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus price target of $133.00.

Read Our Latest Analysis on MRK

About Merck & Co., Inc.

(Free Report)

Merck & Co, Inc operates as a healthcare company worldwide. It operates through two segments, Pharmaceutical and Animal Health. The Pharmaceutical segment offers human health pharmaceutical products in the areas of oncology, hospital acute care, immunology, neuroscience, virology, cardiovascular, and diabetes under the Keytruda, Bridion, Adempas, Lagevrio, Belsomra, Simponi, and Januvia brands, as well as vaccine products consisting of preventive pediatric, adolescent, and adult vaccines under the Gardasil/Gardasil 9, ProQuad, M-M-R II, Varivax, RotaTeq, Live Oral, Vaxneuvance, Pneumovax 23, and Vaqta names.

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

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