Merck (MRK) closed the most recent trading day at $81.91, moving +0.69% from the previous trading session. This move outpaced the S&P 500's daily loss of 0.01%. Meanwhile, the Dow lost 0.1%, and the Nasdaq, a tech-heavy index, added 0.12%.
Heading into today, shares of the pharmaceutical company had gained 1.93% over the past month, outpacing the Medical sector's gain of 1.11% and lagging the S&P 500's gain of 2.24% in that time.
Wall Street will be looking for positivity from MRK as it approaches its next earnings report date. The company is expected to report EPS of $1.06, up 0.95% from the prior-year quarter. Our most recent consensus estimate is calling for quarterly revenue of $10.50 billion, up 4.57% from the year-ago period.
MRK's full-year Zacks Consensus Estimates are calling for earnings of $4.65 per share and revenue of $44.38 billion. These results would represent year-over-year changes of +7.14% and +4.93%, respectively.
Investors should also note any recent changes to analyst estimates for MRK. Recent revisions tend to reflect the latest near-term business trends. With this in mind, we can consider positive estimate revisions a sign of optimism about the company's business outlook.
Research indicates that these estimate revisions are directly correlated with near-term share price momentum. Investors can capitalize on this by using the Zacks Rank. This model considers these estimate changes and provides a simple, actionable rating system.
The Zacks Rank system ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell). It has a remarkable, outside-audited track record of success, with #1 stocks delivering an average annual return of +25% since 1988. Over the past month, the Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 0.14% lower. MRK is holding a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold) right now.
Valuation is also important, so investors should note that MRK has a Forward P/E ratio of 17.5 right now. Its industry sports an average Forward P/E of 15.21, so we one might conclude that MRK is trading at a premium comparatively.
Also, we should mention that MRK has a PEG ratio of 1.99. This popular metric is similar to the widely-known P/E ratio, with the difference being that the PEG ratio also takes into account the company's expected earnings growth rate. Large Cap Pharmaceuticals stocks are, on average, holding a PEG ratio of 2.12 based on yesterday's closing prices.
The Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry is part of the Medical sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 96, putting it in the top 38% of all 250+ industries.
The Zacks Industry Rank includes is listed in order from best to worst in terms of the average Zacks Rank of the individual companies within each of these sectors. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.
Make sure to utilize Zacks. Com to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and more, in the coming trading sessions.
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