Strs Ohio cut its stake in Merck & Company, Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 16.8% in the 2nd quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 1,846,006 shares of the company’s stock after selling 371,775 shares during the quarter. Strs Ohio owned about 0.07% of Merck & worth $118,310,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in MRK. Boston Partners grew its position in Merck & by 2.6% during the first quarter. Boston Partners now owns 19,935,016 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,266,671,000 after buying an additional 500,476 shares in the last quarter. Clearbridge Investments LLC grew its position in Merck & by 0.6% during the first quarter. Clearbridge Investments LLC now owns 13,414,669 shares of the company’s stock worth $852,368,000 after buying an additional 77,344 shares in the last quarter. Sanders Capital LLC grew its position in Merck & by 3.3% during the first quarter. Sanders Capital LLC now owns 11,593,645 shares of the company’s stock worth $752,482,000 after buying an additional 365,276 shares in the last quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. grew its position in Merck & by 0.4% during the first quarter. PNC Financial Services Group Inc. now owns 9,821,563 shares of the company’s stock worth $624,064,000 after buying an additional 41,748 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Bank of Montreal Can grew its position in Merck & by 8.1% during the second quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 9,723,813 shares of the company’s stock worth $623,199,000 after buying an additional 732,720 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 72.91% of the company’s stock.

Merck & Company, Inc. (MRK) opened at 65.13 on Monday. Merck & Company, Inc. has a 12-month low of $58.29 and a 12-month high of $66.80. The stock has a market cap of $177.63 billion, a P/E ratio of 35.26 and a beta of 0.81. The firm’s 50 day moving average price is $63.52 and its 200-day moving average price is $63.68.

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

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 6th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.47 per share. This represents a $1.88 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.89%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, September 14th. Merck &’s dividend payout ratio is presently 76.11%.

Several equities analysts recently commented on the company. HSBC Holdings plc upgraded Merck & from a “reduce” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. BidaskClub cut Merck & from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. UBS AG boosted their target price on Merck & from $70.00 to $72.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, July 31st. BMO Capital Markets restated a “buy” rating and set a $74.00 target price on shares of Merck & in a research report on Tuesday, June 6th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered Merck & from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 2nd. Two research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have given a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $70.00.

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About Merck &

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 & (NYSE:MRK)

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