BMO Capital Markets Reaffirms Sell Rating for Merck & Company, Inc. (MRK)

BMO Capital Markets restated their sell rating on shares of Merck & Company, Inc. (NYSE:MRK) in a research note issued to investors on Wednesday, July 5th.

A number of other analysts also recently commented on the company. BidaskClub upgraded Merck & from a sell rating to a hold rating in a report on Thursday, June 22nd. Credit Suisse Group restated a buy rating on shares of Merck & in a report on Tuesday, June 13th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Merck & from a buy rating to a hold rating in a report on Monday, June 12th. Jefferies Group LLC restated a sell rating and set a $51.00 price objective on shares of Merck & in a report on Wednesday, May 24th. Finally, Vetr downgraded Merck & from a strong-buy rating to a buy rating and set a $69.99 price objective for the company. in a report on Wednesday, May 17th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $69.80.

Merck & (MRK) traded down 0.36% during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $63.88. The company had a trading volume of 11,714,888 shares. The stock has a market capitalization of $174.72 billion, a PE ratio of 34.59 and a beta of 0.81. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $63.67 and a 200-day moving average price of $63.76. Merck & has a 52 week low of $57.18 and a 52 week high of $66.80.

Merck & (NYSE:MRK) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $1.01 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.87 by $0.14. The company had revenue of $9.93 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.75 billion. Merck & had a return on equity of 25.75% and a net margin of 17.14%. Merck &’s revenue was up .9% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $0.93 EPS. On average, equities analysts predict that Merck & will post $3.85 EPS for the current year.

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The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 6th. Investors of record on Friday, September 15th will be issued a dividend of $0.47 per share. This represents a $1.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.94%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 14th. Merck &’s payout ratio is 76.11%.

In related news, Director C Robert Kidder sold 5,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $63.54, for a total transaction of $317,700.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now directly owns 14,317 shares in the company, valued at $909,702.18. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Company insiders own 0.05% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of MRK. Davis R M Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Merck & by 9.2% in the second quarter. Davis R M Inc. now owns 255,108 shares of the company’s stock worth $16,350,000 after buying an additional 21,555 shares during the last quarter. Norris Perne & French LLP MI boosted its stake in shares of Merck & by 3.9% in the second quarter. Norris Perne & French LLP MI now owns 135,424 shares of the company’s stock worth $8,679,000 after buying an additional 5,141 shares during the last quarter. Honeywell International Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Merck & by 1.3% in the second quarter. Honeywell International Inc. now owns 533,200 shares of the company’s stock worth $34,173,000 after buying an additional 7,100 shares during the last quarter. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Merck & by 5.9% in the second quarter. Cullen Frost Bankers Inc. now owns 223,682 shares of the company’s stock worth $14,336,000 after buying an additional 12,386 shares during the last quarter. Finally, WealthTrust Axiom LLC boosted its stake in shares of Merck & by 0.4% in the second quarter. WealthTrust Axiom LLC now owns 52,200 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,345,000 after buying an additional 205 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 73.68% of the company’s stock.

Merck & Company Profile

Merck & Co, Inc is a global healthcare company. The Company offers health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies and animal health products. It operates through four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services and Alliances. The Company’s Pharmaceutical segment includes human health pharmaceutical and vaccine products marketed either directly by the Company or through joint ventures.

Analyst Recommendations for Merck & (NYSE:MRK)

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