Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) Shares Sold by South State CORP.

South State CORP. reduced its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 9.1% in the 1st quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The firm owned 30,664 shares of the company’s stock after selling 3,067 shares during the quarter. South State CORP.’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $2,364,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of the company. NTV Asset Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 22.8% in the 4th quarter. NTV Asset Management LLC now owns 24,982 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,044,000 after buying an additional 4,643 shares during the period. Sigma Planning Corp lifted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 15.3% in the 1st quarter. Sigma Planning Corp now owns 73,515 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,667,000 after buying an additional 9,762 shares during the period. Redpoint Investment Management Pty Ltd lifted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 3.6% in the 1st quarter. Redpoint Investment Management Pty Ltd now owns 67,844 shares of the company’s stock valued at $5,230,000 after buying an additional 2,377 shares during the period. Alpha Cubed Investments LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 9.8% in the 1st quarter. Alpha Cubed Investments LLC now owns 263,991 shares of the company’s stock valued at $20,351,000 after buying an additional 23,629 shares during the period. Finally, Naples Global Advisors LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 4.6% in the 1st quarter. Naples Global Advisors LLC now owns 81,214 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,261,000 after buying an additional 3,578 shares during the period. 71.98% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

In other news, EVP Frank Clyburn sold 19,324 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, May 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $78.32, for a total transaction of $1,513,455.68. 0.32% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several equities analysts recently weighed in on MRK shares. Truist Securities dropped their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. from $96.00 to $93.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research note on Monday. SVB Leerink dropped their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. from $102.00 to $99.00 and set an “outperform” rating for the company in a research note on Thursday, June 3rd. JPMorgan Chase & Co. dropped their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. from $105.00 to $100.00 and set an “overweight” rating for the company in a research note on Wednesday. Finally, Argus reaffirmed a “hold” rating on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Thursday, May 20th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $96.11.

MRK stock opened at $75.92 on Friday. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 52-week low of $71.71 and a 52-week high of $87.80. The business’s fifty day simple moving average is $76.85. The company has a quick ratio of 0.78, a current ratio of 1.02 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.89. The firm has a market capitalization of $192.23 billion, a PE ratio of 27.59, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.84 and a beta of 0.40.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 29th. The company reported $1.40 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.63 by ($0.23). Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 54.15% and a net margin of 14.64%. The business had revenue of $12.08 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $12.71 billion. During the same quarter last year, the business earned $1.50 EPS. Merck & Co., Inc.’s revenue for the quarter was up .2% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 6.47 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently disclosed a dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, June 2nd. Stockholders of record on Friday, June 4th were issued a dividend of $0.65 per share. This represents a dividend yield of 3.42%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, June 3rd. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is 43.77%.

Merck & Co., Inc. Profile

Merck & Co, Inc operates as a healthcare company worldwide. It operates through two segments, Pharmaceutical and Animal Health segments. The Pharmaceutical segment offers human health pharmaceutical products in the areas of oncology, hospital acute care, immunology, neuroscience, virology, cardiovascular, diabetes, and women's health, as well as vaccine products.

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

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