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Merck (MRK) Stock Moves -1.45%: What You Should Know

Zacks Equity Research
·3 min read

In the latest trading session, Merck (MRK) closed at $78.67, marking a -1.45% move from the previous day. This move was narrower than the S&P 500's daily loss of 1.63%. Elsewhere, the Dow lost 1.44%, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 1.65%.

Prior to today's trading, shares of the pharmaceutical company had lost 6.78% over the past month. This has lagged the Medical sector's gain of 0.14% and the S&P 500's gain of 2.86% in that time.

Investors will be hoping for strength from MRK as it approaches its next earnings release, which is expected to be October 27, 2020. The company is expected to report EPS of $1.44, down 4.64% from the prior-year quarter. Meanwhile, our latest consensus estimate is calling for revenue of $12.01 billion, down 3.12% from the prior-year quarter.

Looking at the full year, our Zacks Consensus Estimates suggest analysts are expecting earnings of $5.68 per share and revenue of $47.76 billion. These totals would mark changes of +9.44% and +1.97%, respectively, from last year.

Investors might also notice recent changes to analyst estimates for MRK. Recent revisions tend to reflect the latest near-term business trends. As such, positive estimate revisions reflect analyst optimism about the company's business and profitability.

Based on our research, we believe these estimate revisions are directly related to near-team stock moves. To benefit from this, we have developed the Zacks Rank, a proprietary model which takes these estimate changes into account and provides an actionable rating system.

The Zacks Rank system, which ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 1988. Over the past month, the Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 0.18% lower. MRK currently has a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold).

In terms of valuation, MRK is currently trading at a Forward P/E ratio of 14.04. This valuation marks a discount compared to its industry's average Forward P/E of 14.23.

Investors should also note that MRK has a PEG ratio of 2.08 right now. This metric is used similarly to the famous P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also takes into account the stock's expected earnings growth rate. The Large Cap Pharmaceuticals was holding an average PEG ratio of 1.97 at yesterday's closing price.

The Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry is part of the Medical sector. This industry currently has a Zacks Industry Rank of 118, which puts it in the top 47% of all 250+ industries.

The Zacks Industry Rank gauges the strength of our industry groups by measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the groups. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.

Be sure to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and many more, on Zacks.com.


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