Cetera Investment Advisers Has $1.36 Million Stock Holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

Cetera Investment Advisers decreased its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 4.7% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 17,716 shares of the company’s stock after selling 877 shares during the period. Cetera Investment Advisers’ holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $1,361,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

Other hedge funds have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Vanguard Group Inc increased its position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 202,833,998 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,389,044,000 after buying an additional 924,701 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. by 5.6% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 194,589,541 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,868,587,000 after acquiring an additional 10,315,510 shares during the period. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund boosted its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. by 17,936.7% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 53,150,490 shares of the company’s stock valued at $696,000 after acquiring an additional 52,855,811 shares during the period. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. by 10.4% during the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 34,032,366 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,596,161,000 after acquiring an additional 3,219,877 shares during the period. Finally, Northern Trust Corp boosted its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. by 3.0% during the fourth quarter. Northern Trust Corp now owns 32,497,759 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,483,154,000 after acquiring an additional 951,911 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 75.08% of the company’s stock.

Merck & Co., Inc. stock traded down $1.70 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $83.54. The stock had a trading volume of 12,027,000 shares, compared to its average volume of 10,790,215. Merck & Co., Inc. has a twelve month low of $59.80 and a twelve month high of $86.50. The stock has a market capitalization of $214.96 billion, a PE ratio of 19.27, a PEG ratio of 1.83 and a beta of 0.55. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82, a current ratio of 1.37 and a quick ratio of 1.06. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $81.07.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, April 30th. The company reported $1.22 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.05 by $0.17. The firm had revenue of $10.82 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $10.45 billion. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 39.85% and a net margin of 19.50%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 7.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.05 earnings per share. Analysts predict that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.74 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, July 8th. Investors of record on Monday, June 17th will be issued a $0.55 dividend. This represents a $2.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.63%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, June 14th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 50.69%.

In other Merck & Co., Inc. news, EVP Richard R. Deluca sold 35,000 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, May 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $80.00, for a total value of $2,800,000.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 106,064 shares in the company, valued at $8,485,120. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Frank Clyburn sold 25,000 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, May 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $77.73, for a total value of $1,943,250.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 92,604 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $7,198,108.92. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.27% of the stock is owned by insiders.

A number of research firms have issued reports on MRK. JPMorgan Chase & Co. upped their price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $90.00 to $93.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Friday, June 14th. Goldman Sachs Group assumed coverage on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Tuesday, May 28th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $85.00 price target on the stock. Atlantic Securities raised shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “neutral” rating to an “overweight” rating in a report on Monday, May 13th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, April 18th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $93.00 target price for the company in a report on Monday, April 1st. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and fifteen have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $86.93.

Merck & Co., Inc. Company Profile

Merck & Co, Inc provides healthcare solutions worldwide. It operates through four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services, and Alliances. The company offers therapeutic and preventive agents to treat cardiovascular, type 2 diabetes, chronic hepatitis C virus, HIV-1 infection, intra-abdominal, fungal infection, insomnia, and inflammatory diseases.

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

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