BidaskClub cut shares of Mercer International Inc. (NASDAQ:MERC) (TSE:MRI.U) from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report issued on Friday morning.

Other analysts have also issued research reports about the stock. Royal Bank Of Canada restated a hold rating and set a $12.00 price target on shares of Mercer International in a research report on Tuesday, May 23rd. TD Securities lifted their target price on shares of Mercer International from $13.00 to $15.75 and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Monday, July 31st. Raymond James Financial, Inc. reiterated an outperform rating and issued a $18.00 target price on shares of Mercer International in a research report on Friday, April 28th. Finally, Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Mercer International from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 17th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, five have issued a hold rating and one has given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Mercer International has an average rating of Hold and a consensus price target of $14.94.

Shares of Mercer International (NASDAQ MERC) opened at 11.00 on Friday. Mercer International has a 52 week low of $7.60 and a 52 week high of $12.98. The stock has a market cap of $714.70 million, a PE ratio of 18.74 and a beta of 1.57. The firm has a 50-day moving average of $11.39 and a 200 day moving average of $11.66.

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The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 4th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, September 27th will be given a $0.115 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, September 26th. This represents a $0.46 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.18%. Mercer International’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 79.31%.

In related news, major shareholder Peter R. Kellogg bought 52,283 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, May 19th. The shares were acquired at an average price of $11.12 per share, for a total transaction of $581,386.96. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now directly owns 124,000 shares in the company, valued at $1,378,880. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, Director Eric Lauritzen sold 6,000 shares of Mercer International stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $11.15, for a total transaction of $66,900.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 79,500 shares in the company, valued at approximately $886,425. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders bought 344,677 shares of company stock worth $3,936,554 and sold 29,560 shares worth $345,830. 4.90% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in MERC. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Mercer International by 274.0% in the first quarter. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. now owns 338,684 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,963,000 after buying an additional 248,130 shares during the period. Nationwide Fund Advisors increased its position in Mercer International by 1,193.8% in the first quarter. Nationwide Fund Advisors now owns 186,300 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,180,000 after buying an additional 171,900 shares in the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its position in Mercer International by 22.2% in the second quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 314,654 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $3,618,000 after buying an additional 57,063 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp increased its position in Mercer International by 11.0% in the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 240,556 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $2,767,000 after buying an additional 23,872 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Acrospire Investment Management LLC increased its position in Mercer International by 2,667.4% in the first quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 14,667 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $172,000 after buying an additional 14,137 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 81.41% of the company’s stock.

About Mercer International

Mercer International Inc is a producer of northern bleached softwood kraft (NBSK) pulp, which is pulp that is sold on the open market. The Company also produces and sells tall oil, a by-product of its production process, which is used as both a chemical additive and as a green energy source. It produces and sells NBSK pulp, which is a bleached kraft pulp manufactured using northern softwood.

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