Media stories about Merck & (NYSE:MRK) have been trending somewhat positive recently, Accern reports. Accern ranks the sentiment of media coverage by monitoring more than 20 million blog and news sources. Accern ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of negative one to one, with scores nearest to one being the most favorable. Merck & earned a media sentiment score of 0.15 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned headlines about the company an impact score of 46.6148156281382 out of 100, indicating that recent media coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an impact on the stock’s share price in the near future.

These are some of the news articles that may have effected Accern’s scoring:

Shares of Merck & (MRK) traded down 0.57% during midday trading on Friday, reaching $61.49. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 8,421,689 shares. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $62.91 and its 200-day moving average price is $63.83. The company has a market cap of $167.71 billion, a P/E ratio of 33.29 and a beta of 0.80. Merck & has a 12-month low of $58.29 and a 12-month high of $66.80.

Merck & (NYSE:MRK) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $1.01 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.87 by $0.14. Merck & had a return on equity of 26.02% and a net margin of 17.14%. The company had revenue of $9.93 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $9.75 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.93 EPS. Merck &’s revenue was up .9% on a year-over-year basis. On average, analysts expect that Merck & will post $3.87 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, October 6th. Stockholders of record on Friday, September 15th will be given a dividend of $0.47 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 14th. This represents a $1.88 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.06%. Merck &’s dividend payout ratio is currently 76.11%.

A number of research analysts have recently commented on the company. BMO Capital Markets reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $74.00 target price on shares of Merck & in a research report on Tuesday, June 27th. BidaskClub upgraded Merck & from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, June 22nd. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Merck & from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $73.00 target price for the company in a research report on Friday, May 26th. Credit Suisse Group set a $72.00 target price on Merck & and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, June 6th. Finally, Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “sell” rating and set a $51.00 target price on shares of Merck & in a research report on Wednesday, May 24th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $69.58.

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About Merck &

Merck & Co, Inc is a global healthcare company. The Company offers health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies and animal health products. It operates through four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services and Alliances. The Company’s Pharmaceutical segment includes human health pharmaceutical and vaccine products marketed either directly by the Company or through joint ventures.

Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for Merck & (NYSE:MRK)

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