Planned Solutions Inc. Increases Holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

Planned Solutions Inc. increased its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRKGet Rating) by 11.8% during the second quarter, HoldingsChannel.com reports. The institutional investor owned 3,793 shares of the company’s stock after acquiring an additional 400 shares during the quarter. Planned Solutions Inc.’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $346,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

A number of other institutional investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Bromfield Sneider Wealth Advisors purchased a new stake in Merck & Co., Inc. in the first quarter valued at $79,000. Hikari Power Ltd raised its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 5.0% in the first quarter. Hikari Power Ltd now owns 23,630 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,939,000 after purchasing an additional 1,130 shares during the period. Financial Management Professionals Inc. raised its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 9.3% in the second quarter. Financial Management Professionals Inc. now owns 3,414 shares of the company’s stock valued at $311,000 after purchasing an additional 291 shares during the period. ACG Wealth raised its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 5.6% in the first quarter. ACG Wealth now owns 13,523 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,110,000 after purchasing an additional 722 shares during the period. Finally, Mascoma Wealth Management LLC raised its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 36.4% in the first quarter. Mascoma Wealth Management LLC now owns 926 shares of the company’s stock valued at $76,000 after purchasing an additional 247 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 73.33% of the company’s stock.

Merck & Co., Inc. Stock Performance

Shares of MRK stock opened at $87.51 on Friday. The stock has a fifty day moving average price of $88.83 and a 200 day moving average price of $87.81. The stock has a market cap of $221.69 billion, a PE ratio of 13.40, a P/E/G ratio of 1.14 and a beta of 0.33. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 1 year low of $71.50 and a 1 year high of $95.72. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.66, a quick ratio of 1.15 and a current ratio of 1.39.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRKGet Rating) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 28th. The company reported $1.87 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.67 by $0.20. The firm had revenue of $14.59 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $13.85 billion. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 48.45% and a net margin of 29.00%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s revenue was up 28.0% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.31 earnings per share. Sell-side analysts forecast that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 7.33 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Merck & Co., Inc. Announces Dividend

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 7th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, September 15th will be given a dividend of $0.69 per share. This represents a $2.76 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.15%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, September 14th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s payout ratio is 42.27%.

Analyst Ratings Changes

A number of research firms have commented on MRK. Cowen lifted their target price on Merck & Co., Inc. from $95.00 to $102.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research report on Monday, June 27th. Berenberg Bank upgraded Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price objective for the company from $95.00 to $100.00 in a report on Wednesday, September 14th. Cowen boosted their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. from $95.00 to $102.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a report on Monday, June 27th. Mizuho began coverage on Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Friday, June 24th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $100.00 price objective on the stock. Finally, Atlantic Securities boosted their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. from $105.00 to $110.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 13th. Seven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating, eleven have given a buy rating and two have given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat, the stock currently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $98.28.

Merck & Co., Inc. Profile

(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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