Russell Investments Group Ltd. increased its holdings in Mercer International Inc. (NASDAQ:MERC) (TSE:MRI.U) by 3.8% during the first quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The fund owned 348,776 shares of the basic materials company’s stock after acquiring an additional 12,885 shares during the period. Russell Investments Group Ltd. owned about 0.54% of Mercer International worth $4,335,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
Several other institutional investors and hedge funds have also bought and sold shares of the stock. Geode Capital Management LLC raised its holdings in shares of Mercer International by 1.7% in the 4th quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 368,777 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $5,272,000 after acquiring an additional 6,282 shares during the last quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans grew its position in Mercer International by 51.3% in the 1st quarter. Thrivent Financial for Lutherans now owns 101,837 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $1,268,000 after purchasing an additional 34,507 shares in the last quarter. Thrivent Financial For Lutherans bought a new stake in Mercer International in the 4th quarter worth about $963,000. Bogle Investment Management L P DE bought a new stake in Mercer International in the 4th quarter worth about $1,242,000. Finally, Opus Capital Group LLC bought a new stake in Mercer International in the 1st quarter worth about $2,008,000. Institutional investors own 76.27% of the company’s stock.
In other news, Director Eric Lauritzen sold 11,200 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 21st. The shares were sold at an average price of $15.93, for a total transaction of $178,416.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. 4.90% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
A number of brokerages have issued reports on MERC. BidaskClub raised shares of Mercer International from a “buy” rating to a “strong-buy” rating in a research report on Thursday. TD Securities raised shares of Mercer International from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and upped their price objective for the stock from $15.00 to $20.00 in a research report on Wednesday, June 20th. Royal Bank of Canada upped their price objective on shares of Mercer International to $17.00 and gave the stock an “outperform” rating in a research report on Monday, May 7th. ValuEngine downgraded shares of Mercer International from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 2nd. Finally, Credit Suisse Group raised shares of Mercer International from a “neutral” rating to an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, May 11th. One research analyst has rated the stock with a hold rating, four have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. Mercer International currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $17.33.
Shares of MERC stock opened at $17.50 on Friday. Mercer International Inc. has a 52-week low of $10.45 and a 52-week high of $17.75. The company has a quick ratio of 2.92, a current ratio of 4.14 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.22. The stock has a market capitalization of $1.14 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 13.26 and a beta of 1.67.
Mercer International (NASDAQ:MERC) (TSE:MRI.U) last released its earnings results on Thursday, May 3rd. The basic materials company reported $0.72 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.67 by $0.05. Mercer International had a net margin of 6.68% and a return on equity of 16.63%. The firm had revenue of $367.90 million during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $358.50 million. Mercer International’s quarterly revenue was up 51.5% compared to the same quarter last year.
The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, July 6th. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, June 27th will be given a dividend of $0.125 per share. This represents a $0.50 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.86%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, June 26th.
Mercer International Company Profile
Mercer International Inc, together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells northern bleached softwood Kraft (NBSK) pulp in the United States, Europe, Asia, and internationally. The company operates in two segments, Pulp and Wood Products. It produces NBSK pulp primarily from wood chips and pulp logs; carbon neutral or green energy using carbon-neutral bio-fuels, such as black liquor and wood waste; and tall oil for use as a chemical additive and green energy source.
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