FY2016 Earnings Forecast for Merck & Co. Issued By Jefferies Group (MRK)
Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) – Equities researchers at Jefferies Group dropped their FY2016 earnings per share (EPS) estimates for shares of Merck & Co. in a research report issued to clients and investors on Thursday. Jefferies Group analyst J. Holford now expects that the firm will earn $3.75 per share for the year, down from their prior forecast of $3.80. Jefferies Group has a “Hold” rating and a $65.00 price objective on the stock. Jefferies Group also issued estimates for Merck & Co.’s FY2018 earnings at $4.34 EPS, FY2019 earnings at $4.56 EPS and FY2020 earnings at $4.84 EPS.
A number of other equities research analysts also recently issued reports on MRK. Argus restated a “buy” rating and issued a $65.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co. in a report on Wednesday, September 14th. BMO Capital Markets restated a “market perform” rating and issued a $62.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co. in a report on Tuesday, August 2nd. Piper Jaffray Cos. restated a “neutral” rating and issued a $62.00 target price (up from $58.00) on shares of Merck & Co. in a report on Monday, August 8th. Leerink Swann restated a “hold” rating and issued a $58.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co. in a report on Thursday, July 14th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Merck & Co. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $70.00 target price for the company in a report on Friday, October 14th. Thirteen investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the company. The company has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of €65.58 ($72.06).
Shares of Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) opened at 62.09 on Monday. The company’s 50-day moving average is $62.50 and its 200 day moving average is $58.90. The firm has a market capitalization of $171.69 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 34.06 and a beta of 0.68. Merck & Co. has a 52 week low of $47.97 and a 52 week high of $64.86.
Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 29th. The company reported $0.93 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.91 by $0.02. Merck & Co. had a net margin of 13.01% and a return on equity of 23.41%. The business had revenue of $9.84 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $9.79 billion. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.86 EPS. The company’s revenue was up .6% on a year-over-year basis.
Several institutional investors have recently modified their holdings of MRK. Accredited Investors Inc. increased its position in shares of Merck & Co. by 0.3% in the first quarter. Accredited Investors Inc. now owns 9,125 shares of the company’s stock worth $483,000 after buying an additional 23 shares during the period. Thomaspartners Inc. boosted its stake 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 in the last quarter. QCI Asset Management Inc. NY boosted its stake in Merck & Co. by 1.1% in the second quarter. QCI Asset Management Inc. NY now owns 2,382 shares of the company’s stock valued at $137,000 after buying an additional 27 shares in the last quarter. Gerber Kawasaki Wealth & Investment Management boosted its stake 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 in the last quarter. Finally, Annex Advisory Services LLC boosted its stake in Merck & Co. by 0.4% in the second quarter. Annex Advisory Services LLC now owns 12,081 shares of the company’s stock valued at $696,000 after buying an additional 43 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 72.93% of the company’s stock.
In other news, insider Weir Mirian M. Graddick sold 40,800 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of €62.07 ($68.21), for a total transaction of €2,532,456.00 ($2,782,918.68). Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 128,973 shares in the company, valued at €8,005,354.11 ($8,797,092.43). The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Kenneth C. Frazier sold 392,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of €61.81 ($67.92), for a total value of €24,229,520.00 ($26,625,846.15). Following the transaction, the chairman now owns 760,877 shares of the company’s stock, valued at €47,029,807.37 ($51,681,107). The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.05% of the company’s stock.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, October 7th. Stockholders of record on Thursday, September 15th were given a dividend of $0.46 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, September 13th. This represents a $1.84 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.96%. Merck & Co.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 101.10%.
About Merck & Co.
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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