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Analysts’ Recommendations for Merck in July 2017

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Long-term growth drivers

Merck’s (MRK) has a comprehensive portfolio of novel drugs in its clinical trial pipeline. The extensive clinical pipeline is a major strength of the company. Presently, Merck has around ten investigational drugs in phase 3 clinical trials, which are expected to be commercialized in the next few years.

Some of the drug candidates in phase 3 trials are V90, which is an Ebola vaccine; letemovir for the treatment of cytomegalovirus infection; anacetrapib for the treatment of hypercholesterolemia; verubecestat for the treatment of Alzheimer disease; doravirine for the treatment of HIV type 1 infection; and relebactam in combination with imipenem/cilastatin as an anti-bacterial agent.

Merck’s revenue growth could boost the iShares US Healthcare ETF (IYH). Merck makes up ~5.6% of IYH’s total portfolio holdings. Notably, IYH has ~11.6% of its total portfolio holdings in Johnson & Johnson (JNJ).

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Analysts’ recommendations

Twenty-two analysts covered Merck in July 2017. Four analysts recommended a “strong buy” while ten analysts recommended a “buy.” Seven analysts recommended a “hold,” none of the analysts recommended a “sell,” and one analyst suggested a “strong sell.”

Around 64% of the analysts analyzing Merck in July 2017 suggested some form of a “buy” recommendation. To learn more about Merck’s valuations, please read How Does Merck’s Valuation Compare to Peers?

Competitors’ ratings

Twenty-two analysts covered Pfizer (PFE) in July 2017. One analyst recommended a “strong buy” while ten analysts recommended a “buy.” Ten analysts suggested a “hold,” and one analyst recommended a “strong sell.” Around 50% of the analysts analyzing Pfizer in July 2017, recommended some form of “buy.”

Twenty-nine analysts covered GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) in 2017. Five analysts recommended a “strong buy,” and nine analysts recommended a “buy.” Thirteen analysts recommended a “hold,” one analyst recommended a “sell,” and one analyst recommended a “strong sell.” Around 48% of the analysts covering GSK recommended some form of “buy.”

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