Trust Co lifted its holdings in shares of Merck & Company, Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 2.8% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 68,789 shares of the company’s stock after acquiring an additional 1,852 shares during the quarter. Merck & makes up about 2.0% of Trust Co’s portfolio, making the stock its 20th biggest holding. Trust Co’s holdings in Merck & were worth $4,371,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of the company. Vigilant Capital Management LLC lifted its holdings in Merck & by 16.7% during the 1st quarter. Vigilant Capital Management LLC now owns 1,746 shares of the company’s stock worth $111,000 after purchasing an additional 250 shares during the last quarter. Harbour Capital Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in Merck & during the 1st quarter worth approximately $127,000. Gradient Investments LLC lifted its holdings in Merck & by 41.3% during the 1st quarter. Gradient Investments LLC now owns 2,306 shares of the company’s stock worth $147,000 after purchasing an additional 674 shares during the last quarter. Pinnacle Bank acquired a new stake in Merck & during the 1st quarter worth approximately $152,000. Finally, Dillon & Associates Inc. acquired a new stake in Merck & during the 1st quarter worth approximately $206,000. Institutional investors own 73.02% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Merck & Company, Inc. (NYSE:MRK) traded up 0.06% during midday trading on Friday, reaching $66.16. The company had a trading volume of 14,685,767 shares. The company has a 50 day moving average of $63.41 and a 200 day moving average of $63.72. Merck & Company, Inc. has a one year low of $58.29 and a one year high of $66.80. The company has a market capitalization of $180.44 billion, a PE ratio of 35.82 and a beta of 0.81.

Merck & (NYSE:MRK) last released its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $1.01 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.87 by $0.14. Merck & had a return on equity of 26.02% and a net margin of 17.14%. The business had revenue of $9.93 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.75 billion. During the same quarter last year, the business posted $0.93 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up .9% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts predict that Merck & Company, Inc. will post $3.87 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 6th. Shareholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be given a dividend of $0.47 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $1.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.84%. Merck &’s payout ratio is 76.11%.

Several analysts recently weighed in on MRK shares. Jefferies Group LLC reissued a “sell” rating and set a $52.00 price target on shares of Merck & in a report on Sunday, August 20th. Credit Suisse Group dropped their price target on Merck & from $75.00 to $74.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a report on Wednesday, August 30th. BMO Capital Markets reissued a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 price target on shares of Merck & in a report on Friday, September 8th. BidaskClub cut Merck & from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a report on Tuesday, July 11th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG reissued a “hold” rating and set a $66.00 price target (up from $64.00) on shares of Merck & in a report on Monday, July 17th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have issued a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the stock. Merck & currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $70.00.

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Merck & 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.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Merck & (NYSE:MRK)

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