Royal Bank of Canada Reaffirms “Hold” Rating for Mercer International Inc. (MERC)
Mercer International Inc. (NASDAQ:MERC) (TSE:MRI.U)‘s stock had its “hold” rating reiterated by stock analysts at Royal Bank of Canada in a note issued to investors on Tuesday. They presently have a $12.00 price target on the basic materials company’s stock. Royal Bank of Canada’s price target indicates a potential upside of 6.67% from the stock’s current price.
A number of other research analysts also recently weighed in on MERC. TD Securities reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $18.00 target price on shares of Mercer International in a report on Monday, May 1st. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Mercer International from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, May 17th. Standpoint Research downgraded Mercer International from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, January 23rd. Finally, Raymond James Financial, Inc. reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $18.00 target price on shares of Mercer International in a report on Friday, April 28th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $15.40.
Mercer International (NASDAQ:MERC) traded up 0.45% during midday trading on Tuesday, reaching $11.25. The company had a trading volume of 91,691 shares. Mercer International has a one year low of $7.03 and a one year high of $12.98. The stock has a market capitalization of $730.52 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.45 and a beta of 1.43. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $11.53 and a 200-day moving average price of $11.14.
Mercer International (NASDAQ:MERC) last posted its earnings results on Thursday, April 27th. The basic materials company reported $0.31 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.34 by $0.03. Mercer International had a return on equity of 8.34% and a net margin of 3.75%. The firm had revenue of $242.78 million for the quarter. On average, equities analysts expect that Mercer International will post $0.99 earnings per share for the current year.
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, July 6th. Investors of record on Tuesday, June 27th will be paid a $0.115 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, June 23rd. This represents a $0.46 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.09%. Mercer International’s payout ratio is currently 86.79%.
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In related news, major shareholder Peter R. Kellogg purchased 15,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, April 13th. The shares were bought at an average price of $11.50 per share, for a total transaction of $172,500.00. Following the purchase, the insider now directly owns 2,788,916 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $32,072,534. The acquisition was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through this hyperlink. Also, Director Eric Lauritzen sold 6,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, April 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $11.71, for a total value of $70,260.00. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 86,000 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,007,060. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders purchased a total of 106,604 shares of company stock worth $1,202,983 in the last 90 days. 4.70% of the stock is currently owned by company insiders.
Several hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of MERC. Acrospire Investment Management LLC increased its stake in Mercer International by 2,667.4% in the first quarter. Acrospire Investment Management LLC now owns 14,667 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $172,000 after buying an additional 14,137 shares during the last quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC increased its stake in Mercer International by 17.8% in the first quarter. Parametric Portfolio Associates LLC now owns 17,824 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $209,000 after buying an additional 2,689 shares during the last quarter. Renaissance Group LLC increased its stake in Mercer International by 10.1% in the fourth quarter. Renaissance Group LLC now owns 34,732 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $370,000 after buying an additional 3,178 shares during the last quarter. O Shaughnessy Asset Management LLC increased its stake in Mercer International by 45.7% in the fourth quarter. O Shaughnessy Asset Management LLC now owns 42,402 shares of the basic materials company’s stock valued at $452,000 after buying an additional 13,307 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Credit Agricole S A bought a new stake in Mercer International during the fourth quarter valued at $1,407,000. Institutional investors own 81.58% of the company’s stock.
About Mercer International
Mercer International Inc is a producer of northern bleached softwood kraft (NBSK) pulp, which is pulp that is sold on the open market. The Company also produces and sells tall oil, a by-product of its production process, which is used as both a chemical additive and as a green energy source. It produces and sells NBSK pulp, which is a bleached kraft pulp manufactured using northern softwood.
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