Financial Counselors Inc. Trims Stake in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

Financial Counselors Inc. reduced its position in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRKFree Report) by 2.5% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent filing with the SEC. The fund owned 585,622 shares of the company’s stock after selling 15,005 shares during the period. Merck & Co., Inc. accounts for about 1.3% of Financial Counselors Inc.’s holdings, making the stock its 11th biggest holding. Financial Counselors Inc.’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $77,273,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also made changes to their positions in the company. Cross Staff Investments Inc raised its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 3.5% during the 4th quarter. Cross Staff Investments Inc now owns 6,710 shares of the company’s stock valued at $732,000 after acquiring an additional 225 shares during the last quarter. PFW Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Merck & Co., Inc. during the 1st quarter valued at approximately $212,000. Dynamic Advisor Solutions LLC raised its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 6.0% during the 1st quarter. Dynamic Advisor Solutions LLC now owns 77,833 shares of the company’s stock valued at $10,270,000 after acquiring an additional 4,433 shares during the last quarter. Kennedy Investment Group raised its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 16.0% during the 4th quarter. Kennedy Investment Group now owns 2,564 shares of the company’s stock valued at $280,000 after acquiring an additional 354 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Schear Investment Advisers LLC raised its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 16.0% during the 4th quarter. Schear Investment Advisers LLC now owns 3,233 shares of the company’s stock valued at $352,000 after acquiring an additional 445 shares during the last quarter. 76.07% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

Merck & Co., Inc. Price Performance

Shares of NYSE:MRK opened at $126.08 on Wednesday. The business’s fifty day moving average price is $128.99 and its two-hundred day moving average price is $125.39. The stock has a market cap of $319.34 billion, a PE ratio of 140.09, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.43 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. has a one year low of $99.14 and a one year high of $134.63.

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

Merck & Co., Inc. Dividend Announcement

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, July 8th. Shareholders of record on Monday, June 17th were paid a dividend of $0.77 per share. This represents a $3.08 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.44%. The ex-dividend date was Monday, June 17th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 342.22%.

Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth

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

View Our Latest Analysis on Merck & Co., Inc.

Merck & Co., Inc. Company Profile

(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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