Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) Position Raised by Puzo Michael J

Puzo Michael J lifted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 9.7% during the 4th quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 31,202 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 2,770 shares during the period. Puzo Michael J’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $1,755,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in MRK. Honeywell International Inc. boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 18.8% in the third quarter. Honeywell International Inc. now owns 633,700 shares of the company’s stock worth $40,576,000 after purchasing an additional 100,500 shares during the last quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 18.3% in the third quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 524,481 shares of the company’s stock worth $33,582,000 after purchasing an additional 81,290 shares during the last quarter. Train Babcock Advisors LLC boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 19.8% in the fourth quarter. Train Babcock Advisors LLC now owns 10,810 shares of the company’s stock worth $609,000 after purchasing an additional 1,785 shares during the last quarter. Signature Financial Management Inc. boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 13.1% in the third quarter. Signature Financial Management Inc. now owns 13,432 shares of the company’s stock worth $779,000 after purchasing an additional 1,555 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Stifel Financial Corp boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 3.6% in the second quarter. Stifel Financial Corp now owns 3,308,781 shares of the company’s stock worth $211,982,000 after purchasing an additional 116,491 shares during the last quarter. 74.63% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

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In other news, Director Wendell P. Weeks sold 5,000 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.57, for a total value of $267,850.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 5,100 shares in the company, valued at approximately $273,207. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Also, insider Weir Mirian M. Graddick sold 60,000 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.63, for a total value of $3,697,800.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 101,484 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $6,254,458.92. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 82,500 shares of company stock worth $5,026,025. Corporate insiders own 0.25% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) opened at $53.41 on Monday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.62, a quick ratio of 1.06 and a current ratio of 1.33. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 12 month low of $53.12 and a 12 month high of $66.41. The stock has a market capitalization of $144,003.50, a P/E ratio of 13.42, a P/E/G ratio of 2.25 and a beta of 0.81.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, February 2nd. The company reported $0.98 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.94 by $0.04. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 28.61% and a net margin of 6.40%. The business had revenue of $10.43 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.48 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.89 EPS. The company’s revenue was up 3.1% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts forecast that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.17 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Merck & Co., Inc. declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Tuesday, November 28th that authorizes the company to repurchase $10.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to reacquire shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, April 6th. Shareholders of record on Thursday, March 15th will be paid a $0.48 dividend. This represents a $1.92 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.59%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, March 14th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s payout ratio is 206.45%.

Several research analysts have issued reports on MRK shares. DZ Bank raised Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, February 13th. SunTrust Banks raised Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and raised their target price for the stock from $54.00 to $72.00 in a research report on Tuesday, January 16th. BMO Capital Markets set a $68.00 price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, January 16th. ValuEngine raised Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. Finally, Bank of America assumed coverage on Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Tuesday, November 28th. They issued a “buy” rating and a $64.00 price objective on the stock. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have assigned a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the company. Merck & Co., Inc. presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $66.35.

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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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