Kepler Cheuvreux Gives Merck (ETR:MRK) a Lower Rating. Will Other Analysts Follow Suit?

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Merck (ETR:MRK) Receives a Downgrade

In a recent research report issued to clients and investors on Tuesday, 8 December, Kepler Cheuvreux announced a downgrade to shares of Merck (ETR:MRK) to a “Reduce” rating. The firm has a EUR 75.00 Estimated Target Price on the stock.

From a total of 18 analysts covering Merck (ETR:MRK) stock, 8 rate it a ”Buy”, 0 a “Sell”, and 11 a ”Hold”. This means that 42% of the ratings are positive. The highest target price is €72 while the lowest target price is €54. The mean of all analyst targets is €62.56 with a 6.87% above today’s (€91.91) stock price. Merck was the topic of 26 analyst reports since August 4, 2015 according to the firm StockzIntelligence Inc. Berenberg upgraded shares on December 5 to “Buy” rating. S&P Research maintained shares with “Hold” rating and €104 target share price in a report from a November 13. JP Morgan maintained MRK stock in a recent report from December 1 with “Neutral” rating. UBS maintained the rating on November 11. UBS has a “Neutral” rating and a €89 price target on shares. Finally, Societe Generale maintained the stock with “Hold” rating in a report issued on a November 14.

The stock decreased 0.63% or EUR 0.58 on December 7, striking EUR 91.91. Approximately 676,351 shares of stock traded hands or 25.87% up from the average. Merck KGaA (ETR:MRK) has declined 11.26% since May 5, 2015 and is downtrending. It has underperformed by 10.18% the S&P500.

 Kepler Cheuvreux Gives Merck (ETR:MRK) a Lower Rating. Will Other Analysts Follow Suit?

The overall sentiment of institutions has increased to 1.15 in Q2 2015. Its up 0.09, from 1.06 in 2015Q2. The ratio increased, as 100 institutions have sold all the shares of Merck KGaA that they owned while 557 funds have taken shares off the table. 76 funds have purchased shares for the first time while 682 added to their positions. These institutions now hold 1.88 billion shares or 8.70% less than the 2.06 billion shares they owned in 2015Q2.

The Fund Srb Corp currently is holding shares equating to 10.39% of its total portfolio in Merck KGaA representing a total of 1.53 million shares. Another fund,Foundation Resource Management Inc, is holding a total of 676,176 shares equating to 7.18% of their holdings. Additionally, Orbis Investment Management (U.S.) Llc has a 153,319 share stake in Merck KGaA which represents 6.86% of their total portfolio. The Fund, Alpine Investment Management Llc, based out of Missouri, has also built up a stake in the stock, which represents a total of 6.05% of their total portfolio. Finally Gabalex Capital Management Llc, a fund which is based in the state of New York reported a total holdings of 275,000 shares.

Merck KGaA is a Germany-based company engaged in the pharmaceutical industry. The company has a market cap of 11.88 billion EUR. The Firm diversifies its activities into four business divisions: Merck Serono; Consumer Health; Merck Millipore, and Performance Materials. It has 31.49 P/E ratio. Within the Merck Serono division, the Company focuses on therapeutic areas and prescription drugs of chemical and biotechnological origin.

According to Zacks Investment Research, “Merck & Co., Inc. is a global research-driven pharmaceutical company dedicated to putting patients first. Established in 1891, Merck discovers, develops, manufactures and markets vaccines and medicines to address unmet medical needs. The company devotes extensive efforts to increase access to medicines through far-reaching programs that not only donate Merck medicines but help deliver them to the people who need them. Merck also publishes unbiased health information as a not-for-profit service.” Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Merck KGaA (MRK).

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