LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA Has $26,000 Holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA raised its position in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 250.0% during the second quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 315 shares of the company’s stock after buying an additional 225 shares during the period. LFA Lugano Financial Advisors SA’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $26,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other large investors have also recently added to or reduced their stakes in MRK. Gantzert Investment Co. LLC ADV purchased a new position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. during the 4th quarter worth $2,373,000. Buckingham Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 4.8% during the 4th quarter. Buckingham Capital Management Inc. now owns 69,479 shares of the company’s stock worth $5,309,000 after purchasing an additional 3,177 shares during the period. Essex Investment Management Co. LLC purchased a new position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. during the 4th quarter worth $95,000. Acima Private Wealth LLC purchased a new position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. during the 4th quarter worth $387,000. Finally, Sullivan Bruyette Speros & Blaney LLC lifted its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 6.7% during the 4th quarter. Sullivan Bruyette Speros & Blaney LLC now owns 17,397 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,329,000 after purchasing an additional 1,087 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 75.34% of the company’s stock.

In related news, EVP Richard R. Deluca sold 6,427 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, August 9th. The stock was sold at an average price of $85.09, for a total value of $546,873.43. Following the completion of the sale, the executive vice president now directly owns 103,223 shares in the company, valued at approximately $8,783,245.07. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CFO Robert M. Davis sold 216,718 shares of the stock in a transaction on Tuesday, June 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $85.43, for a total value of $18,514,218.74. Following the completion of the sale, the chief financial officer now owns 354,378 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $30,274,512.54. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.27% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

MRK has been the topic of a number of recent analyst reports. JPMorgan Chase & Co. increased their price target on Merck & Co., Inc. from $90.00 to $93.00 and gave the stock an “overweight” rating in a research note on Friday, June 14th. UBS Group increased their target price on Merck & Co., Inc. from $87.00 to $88.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Thursday, May 2nd. Argus increased their target price on Merck & Co., Inc. to $105.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 7th. Goldman Sachs Group started coverage on Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Tuesday, May 28th. They issued a “neutral” rating and a $85.00 target price on the stock. Finally, Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $95.00 target price on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research report on Wednesday, August 7th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seventeen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Merck & Co., Inc. presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $92.56.

Shares of MRK traded up $1.60 during trading hours on Friday, hitting $85.06. The stock had a trading volume of 8,550,000 shares, compared to its average volume of 9,547,986. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82, a quick ratio of 0.92 and a current ratio of 1.21. The firm has a market cap of $213.54 billion, a P/E ratio of 19.60, a P/E/G ratio of 1.70 and a beta of 0.56. The company’s fifty day simple moving average is $83.38 and its 200 day simple moving average is $80.94. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 12-month low of $66.10 and a 12-month high of $87.07.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 30th. The company reported $1.30 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.16 by $0.14. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 43.34% and a net margin of 21.10%. The firm had revenue of $11.76 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.94 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.06 EPS. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 12.4% compared to the same quarter last year. As a group, sell-side analysts predict that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.91 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Monday, October 7th. Investors of record on Monday, September 16th will be issued a $0.55 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, September 13th. This represents a $2.20 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.59%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 50.69%.

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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