Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) had its price target dropped by analysts at Leerink Swann from $67.00 to $66.00 in a note issued to investors on Wednesday. The firm currently has a “market perform” rating on the stock. Leerink Swann’s price objective suggests a potential upside of 20.46% from the company’s previous close.

A number of other brokerages have also weighed in on MRK. SunTrust Banks upgraded Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and raised their price objective for the company from $54.00 to $72.00 in a research note on Tuesday, January 16th. Jefferies Group restated a “sell” rating and set a $55.00 price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Friday, October 20th. BMO Capital Markets set a $65.00 price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday. ValuEngine upgraded Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. Finally, Citigroup upgraded Merck & Co., Inc. to a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, October 30th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $66.35.

Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) traded down $0.11 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $54.79. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,129,163 shares, compared to its average volume of 14,526,529. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 12-month low of $53.36 and a 12-month high of $66.80. The company has a current ratio of 1.43, a quick ratio of 1.16 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.57. The firm has a market cap of $148,920.00, a price-to-earnings ratio of 58.58, a PEG ratio of 2.49 and a beta of 0.75.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, February 2nd. The company reported $0.98 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.94 by $0.04. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 27.73% and a net margin of 6.40%. The firm had revenue of $10.43 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.48 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $0.89 EPS. Merck & Co., Inc.’s quarterly revenue was up 3.1% on a year-over-year basis. equities analysts anticipate that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.15 EPS for the current year.

Merck & Co., Inc. declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock repurchase program on Tuesday, November 28th that permits the company to repurchase $10.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are often an indication that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

In other news, EVP Michael J. Holston sold 12,500 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, January 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $61.63, for a total value of $770,375.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Wendell P. Weeks sold 5,000 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.57, for a total value of $267,850.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now owns 5,100 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $273,207. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders sold 82,500 shares of company stock valued at $5,026,025. Insiders own 0.25% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the company. Honeywell International Inc. boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 18.8% during the 3rd quarter. Honeywell International Inc. now owns 633,700 shares of the company’s stock valued at $40,576,000 after purchasing an additional 100,500 shares during the period. Hanson McClain Inc. boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 65.0% during the 2nd quarter. Hanson McClain Inc. now owns 7,662 shares of the company’s stock valued at $491,000 after purchasing an additional 3,019 shares during the period. D.A. Davidson & CO. boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 18.3% during the 3rd quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 524,481 shares of the company’s stock valued at $33,582,000 after purchasing an additional 81,290 shares during the period. Hartland & Co. LLC boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 9.5% during the 2nd quarter. Hartland & Co. LLC now owns 44,558 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,856,000 after purchasing an additional 3,861 shares during the period. Finally, Crescent Grove Advisors LLC acquired a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. during the 2nd quarter valued at approximately $1,092,000. Institutional investors own 72.85% of the company’s stock.

ILLEGAL ACTIVITY NOTICE: “Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) Price Target Lowered to $66.00 at Leerink Swann” was first published by The Cerbat Gem and is owned by of The Cerbat Gem. If you are accessing this piece of content on another domain, it was stolen and republished in violation of U.S. and international copyright and trademark law. The correct version of this piece of content can be viewed at https://www.thecerbatgem.com/2018/02/14/merck-co-inc-mrk-price-target-lowered-to-66-00-at-leerink-swann.html.

Merck & Co., Inc. 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. 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.

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

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