Merck & Company, Inc. (NYSE:MRK)‘s stock had its “sell” rating restated by investment analysts at Jefferies Group LLC in a research report issued to clients and investors on Friday. They currently have a $55.00 target price on the stock. Jefferies Group LLC’s target price indicates a potential downside of 13.90% from the company’s current price. Jefferies Group also issued estimates for Merck &’s FY2017 earnings at $3.88 EPS.

MRK has been the topic of several other research reports. BidaskClub cut shares of Merck & from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 11th. BMO Capital Markets set a $70.00 target price on shares of Merck & and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Merck & from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 11th. Credit Suisse Group restated an “outperform” rating and set a $74.00 target price (down previously from $75.00) on shares of Merck & in a research note on Tuesday, September 5th. Finally, Cowen and Company restated a “hold” rating and set a $70.00 target price on shares of Merck & in a research note on Friday, September 1st. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and eleven have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $70.71.

Merck & (NYSE MRK) traded up 0.20% during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $63.88. 10,304,201 shares of the company were exchanged. Merck & has a one year low of $58.29 and a one year high of $66.80. The company has a market capitalization of $174.22 billion, a PE ratio of 34.59 and a beta of 0.80. The stock has a 50-day moving average price of $64.57 and a 200 day moving average price of $63.70.

Merck & (NYSE:MRK) last posted its earnings results on Friday, July 28th. The company reported $1.01 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.87 by $0.14. The business had revenue of $9.93 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $9.75 billion. Merck & had a net margin of 17.14% and a return on equity of 26.02%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up .9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.93 EPS. Analysts predict that Merck & will post $3.87 EPS for the current year.

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A number of institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its holdings in Merck & by 1.7% in the 2nd quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 194,144,317 shares of the company’s stock worth $12,442,709,000 after acquiring an additional 3,312,459 shares in the last quarter. BlackRock Inc. increased its holdings in Merck & by 1.0% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 184,997,390 shares of the company’s stock worth $11,856,484,000 after acquiring an additional 1,834,500 shares in the last quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. increased its holdings in Merck & by 3.1% in the 2nd quarter. Franklin Resources Inc. now owns 27,019,572 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,731,684,000 after acquiring an additional 801,033 shares in the last quarter. Boston Partners increased its holdings in Merck & by 2.6% in the 1st quarter. Boston Partners now owns 19,935,016 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,266,671,000 after acquiring an additional 500,476 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Legal & General Group Plc increased its holdings in Merck & by 1.3% in the 2nd quarter. Legal & General Group Plc now owns 14,564,388 shares of the company’s stock worth $933,445,000 after acquiring an additional 192,348 shares in the last quarter. 72.86% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Merck &

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.

Analyst Recommendations for Merck & (NYSE:MRK)

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