Douglas Lane & Associates LLC cut its position in shares of Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) by 1.2% during the second quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm owned 486,365 shares of the company’s stock after selling 5,871 shares during the period. Douglas Lane & Associates LLC’s holdings in Merck & Co. were worth $28,019,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

A number of other hedge funds also recently bought and sold shares of MRK. Investment Centers of America Inc. increased its stake in Merck & Co. by 7.1% in the first quarter. Investment Centers of America Inc. now owns 83,141 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,387,000 after buying an additional 5,546 shares during the last quarter. Sii Investments Inc. WI increased its stake in Merck & Co. by 35.8% in the first quarter. Sii Investments Inc. WI now owns 77,329 shares of the company’s stock worth $4,087,000 after buying an additional 20,404 shares during the last quarter. Sanders Morris Harris Inc. bought a new stake in Merck & Co. during the first quarter worth $1,352,000. Telemus Capital LLC bought a new stake in Merck & Co. during the first quarter worth $1,768,000. Finally, John G Ullman & Associates Inc. increased its stake in Merck & Co. by 1.3% in the first quarter. John G Ullman & Associates Inc. now owns 225,672 shares of the company’s stock worth $11,940,000 after buying an additional 2,840 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 72.93% of the company’s stock.

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

Shares of Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) traded down 0.59% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $62.14. 12,204,208 shares of the stock traded hands. Merck & Co. has a 52 week low of $47.97 and a 52 week high of $64.86. The firm has a market capitalization of $171.83 billion, a PE ratio of 34.09 and a beta of 0.68. The company’s 50-day moving average is $62.56 and its 200 day moving average is $58.70.

Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 29th. The company reported $0.93 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.91 by $0.02. Merck & Co. had a net margin of 13.01% and a return on equity of 23.41%. The company had revenue of $9.84 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $9.79 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company earned $0.86 earnings per share. Merck & Co.’s quarterly revenue was up .6% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts anticipate that Merck & Co. will post $3.75 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, October 7th. Investors of record on Thursday, September 15th were given a dividend of $0.46 per share. This represents a $1.84 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.96%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, September 13th. Merck & Co.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 101.10%.

A number of analysts recently weighed in on MRK shares. BMO Capital Markets restated an “outperform” rating and issued a $62.00 price objective on shares of Merck & Co. in a report on Tuesday, June 28th. Vetr raised shares of Merck & Co. from a “sell” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $62.26 price target on the stock in a research report on Monday, July 4th. Credit Suisse Group AG reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $59.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co. in a research report on Wednesday, July 6th. Leerink Swann reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $58.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co. in a research report on Thursday, July 14th. Finally, Jefferies Group upped their price target on shares of Merck & Co. from $50.00 to $53.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, July 14th. Twelve investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and ten have issued a buy rating to the stock. Merck & Co. has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of €65.05 ($72.28).

In related news, EVP Adam H. Schechter sold 39,200 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, September 1st. The shares were sold at an average price of €62.61 ($69.57), for a total transaction of €2,454,312.00 ($2,727,013.33). Following the transaction, the executive vice president now owns 39,200 shares in the company, valued at €2,454,312 ($2,727,013.33). The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, Chairman Kenneth C. Frazier sold 392,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of €61.81 ($68.68), for a total transaction of €24,229,520.00 ($26,921,688.89). Following the transaction, the chairman now owns 760,877 shares in the company, valued at approximately €47,029,807.37 ($52,255,341.52). The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Corporate insiders own 0.05% of the company’s stock.

Merck & Co. 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, which it markets directly and through its joint ventures. It operates through one segment, Pharmaceutical. The Company’s Pharmaceutical segment includes human health pharmaceutical and vaccine products marketed either directly by the Company or through joint ventures.

5 Day Chart for NYSE:MRK

Receive News & Stock Ratings for Merck & Co. Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Merck & Co. and related stocks with our FREE daily email newsletter.