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Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) EVP Adam H. Schechter unloaded 22,000 shares of the stock on the open market in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $59.70, for a total transaction of $1,313,400.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link.

Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) traded up 0.95% on Monday, hitting $59.73. The stock had a trading volume of 5,093,681 shares. Merck & Co. has a 1-year low of $44.62 and a 1-year high of $59.84. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $57.89 and its 200-day moving average is $57.00. The company has a market cap of $172.3 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 31.17.

Merck & Co. (NYSE:MRK) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 29th. The company reported $0.85 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $0.80 by $0.05. The company had revenue of $10.93 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $10.60 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.84 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was down .7% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts expect that Merck & Co. will post $3.49 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Tuesday, October 7th. Stockholders of record on Monday, September 15th will be paid a dividend of $0.44 per share. This represents a $1.76 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.97%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, September 11th.

A number of research firms have recently commented on MRK. Analysts at Zacks reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of Merck & Co. in a research note on Monday, August 18th. They now have a $62.00 price target on the stock. Separately, analysts at Jefferies Group cut their price target on shares of Merck & Co. from $63.00 to $60.00 in a research note on Monday, August 11th. They now have a “hold” rating on the stock. Finally, analysts at Credit Suisse reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of Merck & Co. in a research note on Thursday, July 31st. They now have a $59.00 price target on the stock, up previously from $56.00. Seven research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and seven have issued a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $60.64.

Merck & Co, Inc (NYSE:MRK), is a global health care company that delivers health solutions through its prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies, animal health, and consumer care products, which it markets directly and through its joint ventures.

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