The Case for and Against Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK)

Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) is an interesting player in the Healthcare space, with a focus on Drug Manufacturers – Major. The stock has been active on the tape, currently trading at $56.27, down from yesterday’s close by -0.58%. Given the stock’s recent action, it seemed like a good time to take a closer look at the company’s recent data.

Fundamental Analysis

Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) currently trades with a market capitalization of $154.37 Billion. That value represents a market adjusting for revenues that have been falling by -2.00 % on a quarterly year/year basis as of the company’s last quarterly report.

You can get a sense of how sustainable that is by a levered free cash flow of $4.34 Billion over the past twelve months. Generally speaking, earnings are expected to grow in coming quarters. Analysts are forecasting earnings of $0.94 on a per share basis this quarter. Perhaps, that suggests something about why 0.10% of the outstanding share supply is held by institutional investors.

Technical Analysis

It’s important to check the technicals to get a sense of how MRK has been acting. Looking at the stock’s movement on the chart, Merck & Co., Inc. recorded a 52-week high of $66.80. It is now trading 10.53% off that level. The stock is trading $56.56 its 50-day moving average by 0.29%. The stock carved out a 52-week low down at $53.63.

In recent action, Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) has made a move of +1.81% over the past month, which has come on weak relative transaction volume. Over the trailing year, the stock is underperforming the S&P 500 by 19.03, and it’s gotten there by action that has been less volatile on a day-to-day basis than most other stocks on the exchange. In terms of the mechanics underlying that movement, traders will want to note that the stock is trading on a float of 0.82% with $2.73 Billion sitting short, betting on future declines. That suggests something of the likelihood of a short squeeze in shares of MRK.

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