Paragon Capital Management Ltd Continues to Hold Stake in Merck & Co. (MRK)
Paragon Capital Management Ltd continued to hold its stake in Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) during the second quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 4,375 shares of the company’s stock at the end of the second quarter. Paragon Capital Management Ltd’s holdings in Merck & Co. were worth $252,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.
A number of other large investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Accredited Investors Inc. increased its position in Merck & Co. by 0.3% in the first quarter. Accredited Investors Inc. now owns 9,125 shares of the company’s stock valued at $483,000 after buying an additional 23 shares during the last quarter. Thomaspartners Inc. increased its position in Merck & Co. by 0.3% in the first quarter. Thomaspartners Inc. now owns 9,024 shares of the company’s stock valued at $477,000 after buying an additional 26 shares during the last quarter. Vicus Capital increased its position in Merck & Co. by 0.3% in the first quarter. Vicus Capital now owns 11,121 shares of the company’s stock valued at $588,000 after buying an additional 37 shares during the last quarter. Gerber Kawasaki Wealth & Investment Management increased its position in Merck & Co. by 0.8% in the first quarter. Gerber Kawasaki Wealth & Investment Management now owns 4,738 shares of the company’s stock valued at $250,000 after buying an additional 39 shares during the last quarter. Finally, NorthRock Partners LLC increased its position in Merck & Co. by 1.2% in the first quarter. NorthRock Partners LLC now owns 3,862 shares of the company’s stock valued at $206,000 after buying an additional 45 shares during the last quarter. 72.93% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.
Shares of Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) traded down 0.22% during trading on Thursday, hitting $62.66. The stock had a trading volume of 11,430,486 shares. The stock has a market cap of $173.27 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.37 and a beta of 0.68. The company’s 50 day moving average price is $62.69 and its 200 day moving average price is $58.33. Merck & Co. has a 12 month low of $47.97 and a 12 month high of $64.00.
Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) last posted its earnings results on Friday, July 29th. The company reported $0.93 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.91 by $0.02. Merck & Co. had a return on equity of 23.41% and a net margin of 13.01%. The firm had revenue of $9.84 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $9.79 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $0.86 EPS. Merck & Co.’s revenue was up .6% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts expect that Merck & Co. will post $3.75 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 7th. Investors of record on Thursday, September 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.46 per share. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.94%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, September 13th. Merck & Co.’s payout ratio is 101.10%.
Several research analysts have weighed in on MRK shares. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. restated a “neutral” rating and issued a $60.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co. in a research note on Wednesday, June 8th. Citigroup Inc. restated a “neutral” rating and issued a $65.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co. in a research note on Wednesday, August 10th. BMO Capital Markets upgraded Merck & Co. from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and upped their price target for the stock from $62.00 to $72.00 in a research note on Friday, August 5th. Jefferies Group dropped their price target on Merck & Co. from $54.00 to $53.00 and set a “hold” rating for the company in a research note on Tuesday, June 14th. Finally, Morgan Stanley set a $60.00 target price on Merck & Co. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 13th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have given a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Merck & Co. presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of €63.20 ($70.23).
In related news, Chairman Kenneth C. Frazier sold 392,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of €61.81 ($68.68), for a total transaction of €24,229,520.00 ($26,921,688.89). Following the transaction, the chairman now owns 760,877 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately €47,029,807.37 ($52,255,341.52). The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, EVP Clark Golestani sold 3,000 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of €63.03 ($70.03), for a total value of €189,090.00 ($210,100.00). The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.05% of the company’s stock.
Merck & Co. 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, which it markets directly and through its joint ventures. It operates through one segment, Pharmaceutical. The Company’s Pharmaceutical segment includes human health pharmaceutical and vaccine products marketed either directly by the Company or through joint ventures.
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