At Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK), the ratio of insider selling to insider buying over a quarter is running at 5. Could this be a sign something is bothering insiders? MRK recorded 5 sales count on the open market in the last three months. They sold nearly 612,043 shares while purchases amounted to zero shares that period. Looking even further back to 12 months, corporate insiders offloaded 1,915,615 shares when buyers snapped up 276,540 shares. The 12-month’s totals signify about a 6.93-to-1 sell/buy ratio.
Perlmutter Roger M parted with a total of 225.44 thousand shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) at average share price of $75.27. This insider trade in the company took place on 11/08/2018. The total for the sales was set at $16.97 million. After this transaction, the Exe V-P & Pres, MRL account balance stood at 141.56 thousand shares. The stock lost -0.49 percent since that insider sale. On 11/07/2018, Gerberding Julie L., EVP Strat Comm, Gl Pub Policy, sold 36.22 thousand shares at a price per share of $75.14. This removed 2.72 million shares from the insider’s fortune and the stock saw a -0.32 percent retreat in value since the news became public. This transaction left 46.26 thousand shares in the EVP Strat Comm, Gl Pub Policy account.
On 11/01/2018, EVP & Pres-Global Human Health Schechter Adam H performed a sale transaction worth $20.51 million. This sale at $73.81 each has eliminated 277.88 thousand shares from the insider’s portfolio position. Meanwhile, shares have recorded 1.48 percent increase since the transaction was reported. The insider now is left with 55.41 thousand shares remaining in the account. Watson Ashley, who performs the SVP Chief Ethics & Com Officer job, sold 47.04 thousand shares for $3.5 million. The disposal occurred on 10/31/2018 was priced at $74.33 per share. The share price soared 0.77 percent since the reporting date. Watson Ashley now left with a stake of 9.96 thousand MRK stock worth $746.15 thousand after the insider selling.
The 12-month median price target for Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) assigned by the analysts stands at $81, which represents a return potential of 8.14 percent when compared to the closing price of the stock of $74.9 on Friday, January 11. The lowest price target for the stock is $70 — slightly more than -6.54 percent from MRK’s current share price. The stock will probably climb 8.57 percent over the next 12 months, according to price target estimates compiled by finviz. Meanwhile, they have set a $95-month high price target. This represents a whopping 26.84 percent increase from where shares are trading today.
On momentum oscillators front, ‘RSI’ has touched 48.43 on daily chart, which may remain a cause for concern. If the price breaks below $73.87 level on closing basis, then we may see more profit booking and the stock may show further weakness. On the flipside, hitting the $75.18 mark may result into a pull-back move towards $75.45 level. The stock is currently hovering around the first support level of $74.39. Below this, the next support is placed in the zone of $73.87. Till the time, the MRK stock trades above this level, bulls have nothing to fear.
Shares of Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) are trading at a P/E ratio of 34.62 times earnings reported for the past 12 months. The industry MRK operates in has an average P/E of 29.45. Its P/E ratio went as low as 13.95X and as high as 41.85 over the 5-year span. Further, it is sporting a 4.78 on the Price-to-Sales ratio. Compare this with the industry average P/S of 19.89. 67.4 percent is the gross profit margin for Merck & Co., Inc. and operating margin sits at 17.8 percent. Along with this, the net profit margin is 8 percent.
On 11th of January, Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) shares ended higher after a volatile session. The shares accumulated 0.42 points or 0.56 percent at $74.9 with a light trade volume of 9.411 million shares. After opening the session at $74.7, the shares went as high as $74.94 and as low as $74.15, the range within which the stock’s price traded throughout the day. The firm is left with a market cap of $199 billion and now has 2.66 billion shares outstanding. Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) stock has lost -2.87 percent of market value in 21 trading days.
In last reported earnings results, MRK earned $1.19 per share, better than the $1.14, adjusted, expected by Thomson Reuters consensus estimate. Revenue was $10.8B, worse than the $10.9B analysts expected. Earnings are estimated to increase by 29.2 percent this year, 8.43 percent next year and continue to increase by 9.52 percent annually for the next 5 years. Analysts are forecasting revenue to climb 5.4 percent to $11B in the next fiscal quarter, while earnings are seen soaring by nearly 7.14 percent to $1.05 per share. History has shown that shares in Merck & Co., Inc. have gone down on 19 different earnings reaction days and are predicted to add 0.01 percent when the company reports upcoming earnings.
MRK stock has a trailing 3-year beta of 0.72, offering the possibility of a lower rate of return, but also posing less risk. The portion of a company’s profit allocated to each outstanding share of common stock was $2.21 a share in the trailing twelve months. The stock’s value has fallen -1.98 percent year to date (YTD) against a rise of 30.72 percent in 12 month’s time. The company’s shares still trade -6.6 percent away from its 1-year high of $80.19 and 41.78 percent up from 52-week low of $52.83. The average consensus rating on the company is 1.7, on a scale where 5 equates to a unanimous sell rating. In short, the mean analyst recommendations are calling this stock a buy.