Is Merck & Co. (MRK) a Long-Term Bet?
Baron Funds, an investment management company, released its “Baron Health Care Fund” fourth quarter 2022 investor letter. A copy of the same can be downloaded here. In the fourth quarter, the fund increased by 9.08% (Institutional Shares) compared to an 11.54% gain for the Russell 3000 Health Care Index and a 7.56% gain for the S&P 500 Index. The fund fell 16.90% in 2022, compared to a 6.10% decline for the Russell 3000 Health Care Index and an 18.11% decline for the S&P 500 Index. Factors like cash exposure in the up-market, adverse stock selection, and differences in sub-industry exposures led the fund to underperform in the quarter relative to its benchmark. In addition, please check the fund’s top five holdings to know its best picks in 2022.
Baron Funds highlighted stocks like Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) in the Q4 2022 investor letter. Headquartered in Kenilworth, New Jersey, Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) is a healthcare company. On January 27, 2023, Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) stock closed at $105.38 per share. One-month return of Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) was -5.02%, and its shares gained 29.33% of their value over the last 52 weeks. Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) has a market capitalization of $267.18 billion.
Baron Funds made the following comment about Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) in its Q4 2022 investor letter:
"Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) is a large-cap pharmaceutical company with a deep heritage in drug discovery. Share gains were led by the continued growth of key asset Keytruda, the leading immune oncology agent used to treat a variety of cancers. Shares also benefited from increased investor interest as Merck proves its ability to scale its Gardasil vaccine that had previously been constrained by supply issues. We retain long-term conviction, as we expect Keytruda to solidify its position as the best-selling biopharmaceutical drug of all time."
Photo by National Cancer Institute on Unsplash
Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) is not on our list of 30 Most Popular Stocks Among Hedge Funds. As per our database, 82 hedge fund portfolios held Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) at the end of the third quarter, which was 79 in the previous quarter.
We discussed Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) in another article and shared Smead Capital Management's views on the company. In addition, please check out our hedge fund investor letters Q4 2022 page for more investor letters from hedge funds and other leading investors.
Disclosure: None. This article is originally published at Insider Monkey.