Old North State Trust LLC trimmed its position in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 1.7% during the third quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The fund owned 7,105 shares of the company’s stock after selling 124 shares during the period. Old North State Trust LLC’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $598,000 as of its most recent filing with the SEC.
Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Titan Capital Management LLC CA bought a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. in the 2nd quarter valued at $25,000. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 250.0% in the 2nd quarter. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA now owns 315 shares of the company’s stock valued at $26,000 after buying an additional 225 shares during the last quarter. JJJ Advisors Inc. bought a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. in the 2nd quarter valued at $27,000. Cumberland Partners Ltd bought a new position in Merck & Co., Inc. in the 2nd quarter valued at $40,000. Finally, Fusion Family Wealth LLC boosted its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 268.2% in the 2nd quarter. Fusion Family Wealth LLC now owns 486 shares of the company’s stock valued at $41,000 after buying an additional 354 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 74.97% of the company’s stock.
Shares of NYSE:MRK traded up $0.89 during midday trading on Wednesday, hitting $84.18. The company had a trading volume of 4,515,427 shares, compared to its average volume of 10,256,078. The firm has a fifty day simple moving average of $84.66 and a 200 day simple moving average of $82.22. The company has a current ratio of 1.21, a quick ratio of 0.92 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82. The stock has a market cap of $216.07 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.40, a PEG ratio of 1.73 and a beta of 0.53. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 12 month low of $66.10 and a 12 month high of $87.35.
The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, October 7th. Shareholders of record on Monday, September 16th were issued a dividend of $0.55 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, September 13th. This represents a $2.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.61%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 50.69%.
MRK has been the topic of several recent research reports. Citigroup raised their price target on Merck & Co., Inc. from $84.00 to $95.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Friday, June 21st. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Societe Generale set a $105.00 price target on Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 3rd. Argus raised their price target on Merck & Co., Inc. to $105.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 7th. Leerink Swann initiated coverage on Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Thursday, August 15th. They issued an “outperform” rating and a $103.00 price target on the stock. Finally, ValuEngine lowered Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 2nd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, two have given a hold rating and seventeen have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $93.29.
In other Merck & Co., Inc. news, EVP Richard R. Deluca sold 6,427 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction dated Friday, August 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $85.09, for a total transaction of $546,873.43. Following the transaction, the executive vice president now directly owns 103,223 shares in the company, valued at $8,783,245.07. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Insiders own 0.27% of the company’s stock.
About Merck & Co., Inc.
Merck & Co, Inc provides healthcare solutions worldwide. It operates through four segments: Pharmaceutical, Animal Health, Healthcare Services, and Alliances. The company offers therapeutic and preventive agents to treat cardiovascular, type 2 diabetes, chronic hepatitis C virus, HIV-1 infection, intra-abdominal, fungal infection, insomnia, and inflammatory diseases.
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