On Monday, the broad market indices posted marginal gains. The S&P 500 gained 0.3%, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite added 0.4%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose less…
than 0.1%. Investors are currently anticipating the May inflation report later this week, while the Fed appears to be in a blackout period.
Following a Dogs of the Dow investment strategy, some portfolios are leaning toward 10 of the highest dividend-yielding, blue-chip stocks, which are part of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The strategy became popular after the publication of Michael B. O’Higgins’ book, ‘Beating the Dow.’
Given the market’s heightened volatility, we think these Dogs of the Dow stocks, Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK), Amgen Inc. (AMGN), The Coca-Cola Company (KO), and Intel Corporation (INTC), might be solid additions to one’s investment portfolio now.
Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK)
MRK in Kenilworth, N.J., is a global healthcare company that operates through Pharmaceuticals and Animal Health segments. Its pharmaceuticals segment markets human health pharmaceuticals and vaccines, while the Animal Health segment offers veterinary pharmaceuticals, vaccines, and monitoring products.
On May 24, MRK declared a $0.69 per share quarterly dividend on its common stock for the third quarter of 2022, payable to shareholders on July 8. Its $2.76 annual dividend yields 3.07% on prevailing prices. The company’s dividend payouts have increased at a 10.9% CAGR over the past three years and an 8.6% CAGR over the past five years. It has a record of 12 consecutive years of dividend growth.
On May 24, MRK announced that the European Commission had approved KEYTRUDA, MRK’s anti-PD-1 therapy in combination with chemotherapy, as a treatment after surgery for adults with locally advanced or early-stage triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). In April, it was approved for treating microsatellite instability-high (MSI-H) or deficient mismatch repair (dMMR) tumors in adults. These approvals allow the marketing of the KEYTRUDA regimen and monotherapy in all 27 European Union member states plus Iceland, Lichtenstein, Norway, and Northern Ireland, which might bolster the company’s revenues.
MRK’s sales were up 49.6% year-over-year to $15.90 billion for its fiscal first quarter of 2022. Its non-GAAP net income that excludes certain items improved 84.2% from the prior-year quarter to $5.43 billion. And its non-GAAP EPS that excludes certain items increased 84.5% from the same period the prior year to $2.14.
The Street expects MRK’s EPS to improve 29.8% year-over-year to $1.70 for the quarter ending June 30, 2022, while the Street’s $13.90 billion revenue estimate for the same quarter indicates a 21.9% rise from the prior-year quarter. In addition, MRK has topped the consensus EPS estimates in three out of the trailing four quarters.
The stock has gained 17.2% in price year-to-date to close yesterday’s trading session at $89.84. MRK has gained 21.2% over the past year.
MRK’s strong fundamentals are reflected in its POWR Ratings. The stock has an overall A rating, which equates to a Strong Buy in our proprietary rating system. The POWR Ratings are calculated by considering 118 distinct factors, with each factor weighted to an optimal degree.
MRK has a Growth grade of A and a Value, Stability, Sentiment, and Quality grade of B. In the 165-stock Medical – Pharmaceuticals industry, it is ranked #1.
To see the additional POWR Rating for Momentum for MRK, click here.
Amgen Inc. (AMGN)
AMGN in Thousand Oaks. Calif., discovers, manufactures, and delivers human therapeutics globally. The company is focused on the fields of inflammation, oncology, cardiovascular diseases, nephrology, and neuroscience.
On June 6, AMGN announced the approval of RIABNI (rituximab-arrx) by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of adults with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and who have had an inadequate response to one or more tumor necrosis factor (TNF) antagonist therapies. This approval might prove to be beneficial for the company.
On March 7, AMGN reported the groundbreaking of its new biomanufacturing facility at Holly Springs, N.C., which is expected to be operational by 2025. This should bolster the company’s productive capacity.
On March 2, AMGN declared a $1.94 per share dividend for the second quarter of 2022, payable on June 8. This cumulates to a…
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