Investors Asset Management of Georgia Inc. GA ADV Sells 936 Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK)

Investors Asset Management of Georgia Inc. GA ADV decreased its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 3.9% during the 3rd quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 23,012 shares of the company’s stock after selling 936 shares during the quarter. Merck & Co., Inc. accounts for approximately 1.1% of Investors Asset Management of Georgia Inc. GA ADV’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 20th biggest holding. Investors Asset Management of Georgia Inc. GA ADV’s holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. were worth $1,473,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

A number of other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also made changes to their positions in the stock. Saturna Capital CORP increased its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 39.6% in the 1st quarter. Saturna Capital CORP now owns 6,699 shares of the company’s stock valued at $426,000 after buying an additional 1,900 shares during the last quarter. Harbour Capital Advisors LLC purchased a new stake in Merck & Co., Inc. in the 1st quarter valued at about $127,000. Kovitz Investment Group Partners LLC increased its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 1.7% in the 1st quarter. Kovitz Investment Group Partners LLC now owns 6,173 shares of the company’s stock valued at $392,000 after buying an additional 105 shares during the last quarter. Security National Bank of Sioux City Iowa IA purchased a new stake in Merck & Co., Inc. in the 1st quarter valued at about $353,000. Finally, Northern Oak Wealth Management Inc. increased its stake in Merck & Co., Inc. by 2.1% in the 1st quarter. Northern Oak Wealth Management Inc. now owns 28,813 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,831,000 after buying an additional 604 shares during the last quarter. 73.63% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

In related news, Director Thomas H. Glocer sold 5,000 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $56.20, for a total value of $281,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this link. 0.25% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

MRK has been the subject of several analyst reports. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. BMO Capital Markets set a $70.00 price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. Citigroup upgraded shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $72.00 price objective for the company in a research note on Wednesday, October 18th. Jefferies Group reiterated a “sell” rating and issued a $55.00 price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Friday, October 20th. Finally, Leerink Swann increased their price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $69.00 to $70.00 and gave the company a “market perform” rating in a research note on Monday, October 23rd. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have issued a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $66.29.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) opened at $56.80 on Wednesday. Merck & Co., Inc. has a one year low of $53.63 and a one year high of $66.80. The firm has a market cap of $154,910.00, a P/E ratio of 55.15, a P/E/G ratio of 2.84 and a beta of 0.76. The company has a quick ratio of 1.16, a current ratio of 1.43 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.57.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last released its quarterly earnings data on Friday, October 27th. The company reported $1.11 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.03 by $0.08. Merck & Co., Inc. had a negative net margin of 0.49% and a negative return on equity of 0.58%. The business had revenue of $10.33 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.54 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.07 EPS. Merck & Co., Inc.’s revenue was down 2.0% compared to the same quarter last year. equities analysts predict that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 3.95 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Merck & Co., Inc. declared that its board has authorized a share repurchase plan on Tuesday, November 28th that allows the company to repurchase $10.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are generally a sign that the company’s management believes its shares are undervalued.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Monday, January 8th. Investors of record on Friday, December 15th were paid a $0.48 dividend. This represents a $1.92 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.38%. This is a positive change from Merck & Co., Inc.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.47. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, December 14th. Merck & Co., Inc.’s payout ratio is currently 186.41%.

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About Merck & Co., Inc.

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.

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

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