Breiter Capital Management Inc. cut its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 43.0% in the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 5,222 shares of the company’s stock after selling 3,935 shares during the quarter. Breiter Capital Management Inc.’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $399,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

A number of other institutional investors also recently made changes to their positions in MRK. Bank of New York Mellon Corp lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 184,252.6% during the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 38,985,039 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,765,600,000 after purchasing an additional 38,963,892 shares during the last quarter. Capital International Investors lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 178.2% during the third quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 32,984,606 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,339,928,000 after purchasing an additional 21,127,887 shares during the last quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 64.3% during the third quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 20,519,549 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,455,653,000 after purchasing an additional 8,032,634 shares during the last quarter. Matthew Goff Investment Advisor LLC lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 5,970.0% during the third quarter. Matthew Goff Investment Advisor LLC now owns 5,369,519 shares of the company’s stock valued at $88,460,000 after purchasing an additional 5,281,059 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Senator Investment Group LP bought a new stake in Merck & Co., Inc. during the second quarter valued at approximately $285,594,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.45% of the company’s stock.

In other news, Chairman Kenneth C. Frazier sold 231,566 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, February 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $78.08, for a total value of $18,080,673.28. Following the completion of the sale, the chairman now directly owns 923,516 shares in the company, valued at approximately $72,108,129.28. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Thomas H. Glocer sold 10,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 4th. The stock was sold at an average price of $75.96, for a total transaction of $759,600.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.32% of the company’s stock.

Shares of MRK opened at $77.52 on Monday. The company has a market capitalization of $209.01 billion, a PE ratio of 17.86, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.05 and a beta of 0.62. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.61, a current ratio of 1.44 and a quick ratio of 1.15. Merck & Co., Inc. has a fifty-two week low of $52.83 and a fifty-two week high of $80.19.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, February 1st. The company reported $1.04 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.03 by $0.01. The firm had revenue of $11 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.93 billion. Merck & Co., Inc. had a net margin of 14.71% and a return on equity of 35.10%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 5.4% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.98 EPS. Equities research analysts expect that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.65 earnings per share for the current year.

Merck & Co., Inc. announced that its board has approved a share buyback plan on Thursday, October 25th that permits the company to buyback $10.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the company to repurchase up to 5.1% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are often a sign that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, April 5th. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 15th will be issued a $0.55 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, March 14th. This represents a $2.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.84%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s payout ratio is 50.69%.

MRK has been the subject of several research analyst reports. BMO Capital Markets lowered shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $80.00 target price for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, January 23rd. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 16th. SunTrust Banks lifted their target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $77.00 to $80.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, October 29th. Morgan Stanley set a $81.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 20th. Finally, Citigroup set a $79.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, October 16th. Six investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $73.15.

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Merck & Co., Inc. Company Profile

Merck & Co, Inc provides healthcare solutions worldwide. It operates in four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services, and Alliances. The company offers therapeutic agents to treat cardiovascular, type 2 diabetes, asthma, nasal allergy, allergic rhinitis, chronic hepatitis C virus, HIV-1 infection, fungal, intra-abdominal, hypertension, arthritis and pain, inflammatory, osteoporosis, and fertility diseases.

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

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