Stamos Capital Partners L.P. Buys Shares of 35,000 Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK)

Stamos Capital Partners L.P. bought a new stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) during the fourth quarter, according to the company in its most recent filing with the SEC. The institutional investor bought 35,000 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,674,000. Merck & Co., Inc. comprises about 2.0% of Stamos Capital Partners L.P.’s holdings, making the stock its 17th biggest position.

A number of other large investors also recently made changes to their positions in MRK. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 202,833,998 shares of the company’s stock worth $14,389,044,000 after purchasing an additional 924,701 shares during the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc boosted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% during the third quarter. Vanguard Group Inc now owns 202,833,998 shares of the company’s stock worth $14,389,044,000 after purchasing an additional 924,701 shares during the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 5.6% during the fourth quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 194,589,541 shares of the company’s stock worth $14,868,587,000 after purchasing an additional 10,315,510 shares during the last quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund boosted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 17,936.7% during the fourth quarter. Oregon Public Employees Retirement Fund now owns 53,150,490 shares of the company’s stock worth $696,000 after purchasing an additional 52,855,811 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 10.4% during the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 34,032,366 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,596,161,000 after purchasing an additional 3,219,877 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 72.57% of the company’s stock.

Shares of MRK opened at $80.98 on Thursday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.82, a quick ratio of 1.06 and a current ratio of 1.37. The firm has a market capitalization of $214.35 billion, a P/E ratio of 18.66, a PEG ratio of 1.88 and a beta of 0.58. Merck & Co., Inc. has a twelve month low of $58.03 and a twelve month high of $83.85.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last issued its earnings results on Tuesday, April 30th. The company reported $1.22 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.05 by $0.17. The business had revenue of $10.82 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.45 billion. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 39.85% and a net margin of 19.50%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 7.8% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period last year, the company posted $1.05 EPS. Equities research analysts expect that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 4.72 EPS for the current year.

Several equities research analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Bank of America raised their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. from $90.00 to $91.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 1st. BMO Capital Markets restated a “hold” rating on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a report on Tuesday, February 19th. Argus raised their price objective on Merck & Co., Inc. to $95.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Wednesday, February 20th. ValuEngine upgraded Merck & Co., Inc. from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, May 3rd. Finally, Zacks Investment Research cut Merck & Co., Inc. from a “strong-buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, January 24th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and thirteen have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. Merck & Co., Inc. presently has an average rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $82.92.

In related news, Chairman Kenneth C. Frazier sold 18,725 shares of the stock in a transaction on Wednesday, March 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $82.00, for a total value of $1,535,450.00. Following the transaction, the chairman now directly owns 816,440 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $66,948,080. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, major shareholder Merck & Co., Inc. bought 4,121,683 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, April 8th. The stock was purchased at an average cost of $16.00 per share, for a total transaction of $65,946,928.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 538,099 shares of company stock worth $43,923,339 over the last ninety days. Corporate insiders own 0.27% of the company’s stock.

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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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