Marietta Wealth Management LLC Grows Stock Holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

Marietta Wealth Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRKGet Rating) by 10.1% during the first quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The fund owned 44,378 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 4,085 shares during the quarter. Marietta Wealth Management LLC’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $3,641,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. BlackRock Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 5.5% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 198,224,263 shares of the company’s stock worth $15,191,909,000 after buying an additional 10,326,974 shares during the last quarter. State Street Corp grew its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 2.7% during the fourth quarter. State Street Corp now owns 118,668,673 shares of the company’s stock worth $9,174,491,000 after buying an additional 3,132,078 shares during the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 12.7% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 48,153,283 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,682,009,000 after purchasing an additional 5,409,154 shares during the period. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 5.5% in the fourth quarter. Charles Schwab Investment Management Inc. now owns 29,002,620 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,222,762,000 after purchasing an additional 1,500,754 shares during the period. Finally, Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 13.7% in the fourth quarter. Massachusetts Financial Services Co. MA now owns 28,981,674 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,221,156,000 after purchasing an additional 3,484,786 shares during the period. 72.88% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

A number of brokerages recently commented on MRK. Barclays raised their price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $94.00 to $97.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research report on Tuesday, April 12th. Morgan Stanley reduced their price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $82.00 to $80.00 and set an “equal weight” rating for the company in a research report on Wednesday, April 6th. StockNews.com assumed coverage on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Thursday, March 31st. They set a “strong-buy” rating for the company. Mizuho assumed coverage on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Friday, April 1st. They set a “buy” rating and a $100.00 price target for the company. Finally, SVB Leerink reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $102.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Monday, June 6th. Seven investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, seven have issued a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Based on data from MarketBeat, the stock presently has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average target price of $91.60.

Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock opened at $89.16 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.75, a current ratio of 1.40 and a quick ratio of 1.14. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 1 year low of $70.89 and a 1 year high of $94.92. The company has a market capitalization of $225.47 billion, a P/E ratio of 15.95, a P/E/G ratio of 1.19 and a beta of 0.36. The business has a 50 day moving average price of $88.75 and a 200 day moving average price of $82.17.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRKGet Rating) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 28th. The company reported $2.14 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.81 by $0.33. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 47.86% and a net margin of 26.27%. The firm had revenue of $15.90 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $14.64 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.40 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 31.6% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, research analysts expect that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 7.32 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, July 8th. Investors of record on Wednesday, June 15th will be given a dividend of $0.69 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, June 14th. This represents a $2.76 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.10%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 49.37%.

About Merck & Co., Inc. (Get Rating)

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, as well as vaccine products, such as preventive pediatric, adolescent, and adult vaccines.

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

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