Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) has received an average rating of “Buy” from the nineteen research firms that are currently covering the stock, Marketbeat.com reports. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, three have given a hold rating and fifteen have issued a buy rating on the company. The average 12 month target price among brokers that have issued ratings on the stock in the last year is $94.00.

Several equities research analysts have issued reports on MRK shares. Leerink Swann started coverage on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Thursday, August 15th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $103.00 price target on the stock. Bank of America started coverage on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Wednesday. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $90.00 price target on the stock. Credit Suisse Group reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $95.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Wednesday, August 7th. Mizuho reissued a “buy” rating and issued a $97.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Friday. Finally, Argus boosted their price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. to $105.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 7th.

MRK stock traded up $0.88 on Friday, reaching $84.68. 7,139,698 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 7,689,117. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 12 month low of $66.10 and a 12 month high of $87.35. The stock’s fifty day moving average price is $84.37 and its 200 day moving average price is $82.31. The firm has a market capitalization of $214.56 billion, a PE ratio of 19.51, a PEG ratio of 1.96 and a beta of 0.53. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82, a current ratio of 1.21 and a quick ratio of 0.92.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, July 30th. The company reported $1.30 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.16 by $0.14. The business had revenue of $11.76 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.94 billion. Merck & Co., Inc. had a net margin of 21.10% and a return on equity of 43.34%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s revenue was up 12.4% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $1.06 earnings per share. As a group, research analysts expect that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.91 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 7th. Stockholders of record on Monday, September 16th were paid a $0.55 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, September 13th. This represents a $2.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.60%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 50.69%.

In other news, EVP Richard R. Deluca sold 6,427 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Friday, August 9th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.09, for a total value of $546,873.43. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 103,223 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,783,245.07. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. 0.27% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several large investors have recently modified their holdings of MRK. Titan Capital Management LLC CA acquired a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the 2nd quarter worth about $25,000. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 250.0% during the 2nd quarter. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA now owns 315 shares of the company’s stock worth $26,000 after buying an additional 225 shares in the last quarter. JJJ Advisors Inc. acquired a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the 2nd quarter worth about $27,000. Cumberland Partners Ltd acquired a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the 2nd quarter worth about $40,000. Finally, Fusion Family Wealth LLC lifted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 268.2% during the 2nd quarter. Fusion Family Wealth LLC now owns 486 shares of the company’s stock worth $41,000 after buying an additional 354 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 74.99% of the company’s stock.

About Merck & Co., Inc.

Merck & Co, Inc provides healthcare solutions worldwide. It operates through four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services, and Alliances. The company offers therapeutic and preventive agents to treat cardiovascular, type 2 diabetes, chronic hepatitis C virus, HIV-1 infection, intra-abdominal, fungal infection, insomnia, and inflammatory diseases.

Read More: Initial Coin Offering (ICO)

Analyst Recommendations for Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

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