River Road Asset Management LLC Sells 28,619 Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

River Road Asset Management LLC reduced its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 12.1% during the second quarter, according to its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 207,100 shares of the company’s stock after selling 28,619 shares during the period. River Road Asset Management LLC’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $16,106,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also modified their holdings of the company. Cowen Prime Advisors LLC bought a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the second quarter valued at approximately $31,000. AlphaMark Advisors LLC bought a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the second quarter valued at approximately $39,000. Lake Point Wealth Management bought a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the second quarter valued at approximately $40,000. ShoreHaven Wealth Partners LLC grew its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 55.5% during the first quarter. ShoreHaven Wealth Partners LLC now owns 619 shares of the company’s stock valued at $48,000 after acquiring an additional 221 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Solstein Capital LLC bought a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the first quarter valued at approximately $54,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 71.83% of the company’s stock.

Shares of MRK stock opened at $72.01 on Wednesday. The company has a quick ratio of 1.06, a current ratio of 1.31 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.72. The firm has a market capitalization of $182.28 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 32.93, a PEG ratio of 2.16 and a beta of 0.41. The stock has a fifty day moving average of $76.68 and a 200 day moving average of $76.59. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 52 week low of $71.71 and a 52 week high of $86.30.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, July 28th. The company reported $1.31 EPS for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $1.31. The business had revenue of $11.40 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $11.21 billion. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 50.93% and a net margin of 11.48%. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $1.37 earnings per share. Equities research analysts anticipate that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 5.51 earnings per share for the current year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, October 7th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, September 15th will be given a dividend of $0.65 per share. This represents a $2.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.61%. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 14th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 43.77%.

A number of analysts have recently weighed in on MRK shares. Argus reissued a “hold” rating on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Thursday, May 20th. Truist started coverage on Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Tuesday, July 27th. They set a “buy” rating and a $92.00 price objective for the company. SVB Leerink increased their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. from $99.00 to $101.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, July 30th. Truist Securities started coverage on Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Tuesday, July 27th. They set a “buy” rating and a $76.79 price objective for the company. Finally, Morgan Stanley lowered Merck & Co., Inc. from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating and dropped their price objective for the company from $90.00 to $85.00 in a research note on Tuesday, September 7th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the company. According to data from MarketBeat, the company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $91.09.

Merck & Co., Inc. Profile

Merck & Co, Inc engages in the provision of health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products. It operates through the following segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, and Other. The Pharmaceutical segment includes human health pharmaceutical and vaccine products.

See Also: Quick Ratio

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

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