Squarepoint Ops LLC Buys 9,686 Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

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Squarepoint Ops LLC increased its position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 11.7% during the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 92,608 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 9,686 shares during the quarter. Squarepoint Ops LLC’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $7,796,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Titan Capital Management LLC CA acquired a new stake in Merck & Co., Inc. in the 2nd quarter valued at about $25,000. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA raised its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 250.0% in the second quarter. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA now owns 315 shares of the company’s stock worth $26,000 after acquiring an additional 225 shares during the last quarter. Cumberland Partners Ltd bought a new position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in the second quarter worth about $40,000. Fusion Family Wealth LLC raised its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 268.2% in the second quarter. Fusion Family Wealth LLC now owns 486 shares of the company’s stock worth $41,000 after acquiring an additional 354 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Shamrock Asset Management LLC acquired a new position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. during the second quarter worth approximately $49,000. 74.53% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Shares of NYSE MRK opened at $87.04 on Tuesday. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 1 year low of $70.89 and a 1 year high of $87.99. The firm’s 50-day moving average is $84.70 and its 200-day moving average is $83.71. The company has a current ratio of 1.26, a quick ratio of 0.98 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.84. The firm has a market capitalization of $221.96 billion, a PE ratio of 20.06, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.89 and a beta of 0.52.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, October 29th. The company reported $1.51 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.24 by $0.27. Merck & Co., Inc. had a net margin of 20.26% and a return on equity of 48.16%. The business had revenue of $12.40 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $11.59 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.19 earnings per share. Merck & Co., Inc.’s revenue for the quarter was up 14.9% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, equities research analysts anticipate that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 5.15 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, January 8th. Shareholders of record on Monday, December 16th will be paid a $0.61 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, December 13th. This is a boost from Merck & Co., Inc.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.55. This represents a $2.44 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.80%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 50.69%.

Several analysts have recently commented on MRK shares. JPMorgan Chase & Co. set a $96.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 10th. Bank of America assumed coverage on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Wednesday, October 16th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $90.00 price objective for the company. ValuEngine cut shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 2nd. Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $95.00 price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Wednesday, August 7th. Finally, Societe Generale set a $105.00 price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 3rd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and thirteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Merck & Co., Inc. currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $95.47.

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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