Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) Shares Bought by Whittier Trust Co. of Nevada Inc.

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Whittier Trust Co. of Nevada Inc. increased its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 5.2% during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 179,992 shares of the company’s stock after acquiring an additional 8,914 shares during the period. Merck & Co., Inc. comprises about 1.1% of Whittier Trust Co. of Nevada Inc.’s portfolio, making the stock its 21st largest position. Whittier Trust Co. of Nevada Inc.’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $13,752,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.

Several other large investors also recently modified their holdings of MRK. Vanguard Group Inc. grew its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 202,833,998 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,389,044,000 after purchasing an additional 924,701 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc grew its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% in the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 202,833,998 shares of the company’s stock valued at $14,389,044,000 after purchasing an additional 924,701 shares in the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund grew its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 17,936.7% in the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 53,150,490 shares of the company’s stock valued at $696,000 after purchasing an additional 52,855,811 shares in the last quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp grew its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 184,252.6% in the third quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 38,985,039 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,765,600,000 after purchasing an additional 38,963,892 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Capital International Investors grew its position in Merck & Co., Inc. by 178.2% in the third quarter. Capital International Investors now owns 32,984,606 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,339,928,000 after purchasing an additional 21,127,887 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 73.46% of the company’s stock.

A number of research analysts recently weighed in on MRK shares. Morgan Stanley set a $81.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 20th. Citigroup set a $65.00 price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 20th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $83.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Friday, January 4th. BMO Capital Markets downgraded shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and set a $80.00 price objective for the company. in a research report on Wednesday, January 23rd. Finally, Argus lifted their price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. to $95.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, February 20th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $77.83.

Shares of MRK opened at $77.56 on Wednesday. Merck & Co., Inc. has a one year low of $56.26 and a one year high of $83.85. The stock has a market capitalization of $209.12 billion, a PE ratio of 17.87, a PEG ratio of 1.91 and a beta of 0.63. The company has a quick ratio of 0.92, a current ratio of 1.17 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.74.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Friday, February 1st. The company reported $1.04 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.03 by $0.01. Merck & Co., Inc. had a net margin of 14.71% and a return on equity of 36.83%. The company had revenue of $11 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.93 billion. During the same quarter last year, the firm posted $0.98 EPS. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 5.4% on a year-over-year basis. On average, research analysts forecast that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.65 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, April 5th. Stockholders of record on Friday, March 15th were given a $0.55 dividend. This represents a $2.20 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.84%. The ex-dividend date was Thursday, March 14th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 50.69%.

In related news, Director Thomas H. Glocer sold 10,000 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction dated Monday, February 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $75.96, for a total transaction of $759,600.00. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, Chairman Kenneth C. Frazier sold 231,566 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, February 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $78.08, for a total transaction of $18,080,673.28. Following the sale, the chairman now directly owns 923,516 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $72,108,129.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 1,094,632 shares of company stock valued at $87,840,652 in the last ninety days. 0.32% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

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Merck & Co., Inc. Profile

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

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