19,406 Shares in Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) Acquired by Csenge Advisory Group

Csenge Advisory Group bought a new stake in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) in the 3rd quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor bought 19,406 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $1,243,000.

Several other hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Krilogy Financial LLC boosted its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.4% during the 2nd quarter. Krilogy Financial LLC now owns 3,129 shares of the company’s stock valued at $201,000 after acquiring an additional 11 shares during the last quarter. Balentine LLC boosted its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 1.0% during the 2nd quarter. Balentine LLC now owns 2,107 shares of the company’s stock valued at $135,000 after acquiring an additional 20 shares during the last quarter. RB Capital Management LLC boosted its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. RB Capital Management LLC now owns 4,587 shares of the company’s stock valued at $294,000 after acquiring an additional 23 shares during the last quarter. Bath Savings Trust Co boosted its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% during the 2nd quarter. Bath Savings Trust Co now owns 5,427 shares of the company’s stock valued at $348,000 after acquiring an additional 28 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Stillwater Investment Management LLC boosted its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.8% during the 2nd quarter. Stillwater Investment Management LLC now owns 4,621 shares of the company’s stock valued at $296,000 after acquiring an additional 38 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 73.63% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) opened at $57.05 on Friday. The firm has a market cap of $152,949.89, a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.16, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.80 and a beta of 0.76. Merck & Co., Inc. has a twelve month low of $53.63 and a twelve month high of $66.80. The company has a current ratio of 1.43, a quick ratio of 1.16 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.57.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last issued its earnings results on Friday, October 27th. The company reported $1.11 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.03 by $0.08. Merck & Co., Inc. had a net margin of 11.60% and a return on equity of 27.08%. The company had revenue of $10.33 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $10.54 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $1.07 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue was down 2.0% compared to the same quarter last year. sell-side analysts anticipate that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 3.95 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Merck & Co., Inc. announced that its board has authorized a share buyback program on Tuesday, November 28th that permits the company to repurchase $10.00 billion in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, January 8th. Investors of record on Friday, December 15th will be issued a $0.48 dividend. This represents a $1.92 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.37%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, December 14th. This is a boost from Merck & Co., Inc.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.47. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 114.97%.

In related news, Director Thomas H. Glocer sold 5,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, November 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $56.20, for a total value of $281,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. 0.25% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

MRK has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Friday, September 8th. Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. Citigroup upgraded shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 price objective on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, October 18th. Jefferies Group reissued a “sell” rating and set a $55.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Friday, October 20th. Finally, Leerink Swann increased their target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $69.00 to $70.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a report on Monday, October 23rd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $66.29.

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Merck & Co., Inc. 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.

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

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