Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp Purchases 52,800 Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK)

Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp grew its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) by 1.8% during the 2nd quarter, according to its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 2,939,247 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 52,800 shares during the quarter. Mitsubishi UFJ Trust & Banking Corp owned approximately 0.12% of Merck & Co., Inc. worth $227,293,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.

Several other large investors have also modified their holdings of MRK. Hayek Kallen Investment Management raised its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 1.8% during the second quarter. Hayek Kallen Investment Management now owns 22,453 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,736,000 after buying an additional 402 shares during the last quarter. Ninety One SA PTY Ltd grew its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.7% during the 2nd quarter. Ninety One SA PTY Ltd now owns 26,920 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,066,000 after acquiring an additional 179 shares during the period. Capital Advisors Inc. OK grew its holdings in Merck & Co., Inc. by 3.7% during the 2nd quarter. Capital Advisors Inc. OK now owns 5,921 shares of the company’s stock worth $480,000 after acquiring an additional 214 shares during the period. Bridgeway Capital Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 4.8% during the 2nd quarter. Bridgeway Capital Management Inc. now owns 146,235 shares of the company’s stock valued at $11,308,000 after acquiring an additional 6,700 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Toronto Dominion Bank lifted its stake in shares of Merck & Co., Inc. by 0.5% in the 2nd quarter. Toronto Dominion Bank now owns 2,658,390 shares of the company’s stock valued at $140,094,000 after purchasing an additional 13,169 shares during the period. Institutional investors own 73.18% of the company’s stock.

MRK has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Wolfe Research cut Merck & Co., Inc. from an “outperform” rating to a “peer perform” rating in a research note on Friday, June 12th. Morgan Stanley reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $89.00 price target on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. in a research note on Tuesday, June 23rd. ValuEngine upgraded shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Thursday, September 3rd. SVB Leerink boosted their price objective on shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from $95.00 to $100.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 25th. Finally, Goldman Sachs Group raised shares of Merck & Co., Inc. from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their target price for the company from $91.00 to $105.00 in a research note on Monday, August 3rd. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eleven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $94.54.

Merck & Co., Inc. stock traded up $1.36 during midday trading on Wednesday, reaching $85.57. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 9,902,926 shares, compared to its average volume of 10,988,003. The stock has a market cap of $212.99 billion, a PE ratio of 20.87, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.20 and a beta of 0.45. The company has a current ratio of 1.32, a quick ratio of 1.05 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.94. The business has a 50-day moving average price of $83.38 and a 200-day moving average price of $79.46. Merck & Co., Inc. has a 52 week low of $65.25 and a 52 week high of $92.64.

Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Friday, July 31st. The company reported $1.37 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.14 by $0.23. The company had revenue of $10.87 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $10.52 billion. Merck & Co., Inc. had a return on equity of 52.94% and a net margin of 22.20%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 7.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $1.30 earnings per share. As a group, research analysts predict that Merck & Co., Inc. will post 5.69 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, October 7th. Investors of record on Tuesday, September 15th will be issued a $0.61 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, September 14th. This represents a $2.44 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.85%. Merck & Co., Inc.’s dividend payout ratio is presently 47.01%.

In other Merck & Co., Inc. news, EVP Julie L. Gerberding sold 36,285 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, July 17th. The stock was sold at an average price of $80.00, for a total transaction of $2,902,800.00. Following the sale, the executive vice president now owns 62,862 shares in the company, valued at $5,028,960. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, insider Sanat Chattopadhyay sold 10,380 shares of Merck & Co., Inc. stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 13th. The shares were sold at an average price of $83.01, for a total value of $861,643.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 65,541 shares of company stock worth $5,303,782 in the last 90 days. Corporate insiders own 0.28% of the company’s stock.

About Merck & Co., Inc.

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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