-$0.22 EPS Expected for Merus (NASDAQ:MRUS) This Quarter


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Wall Street brokerages expect Merus (NASDAQ:MRUS) to announce earnings per share (EPS) of ($0.22) for the current quarter, Zacks reports. Four analysts have issued estimates for Merus’ earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at ($0.69) and the highest estimate coming in at $0.51. Merus reported earnings of ($0.68) per share during the same quarter last year, which indicates a positive year over year growth rate of 67.6%. The firm is scheduled to report its next earnings report on Monday, May 10th.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Merus will report full year earnings of ($2.33) per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from ($2.65) to ($2.04). For the next financial year, analysts forecast that the company will report earnings of ($3.10) per share, with EPS estimates ranging from ($3.89) to ($2.63). Zacks’ EPS averages are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side analysts that follow Merus.

Merus (NASDAQ:MRUS) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Monday, March 15th. The biotechnology company reported ($1.06) EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.53) by ($0.53). Merus had a negative return on equity of 78.70% and a negative net margin of 295.98%.

A number of equities analysts have recently commented on the company. Roth Capital boosted their price objective on Merus from $19.00 to $32.00 in a research report on Tuesday, January 19th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Merus from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Saturday, March 20th. HC Wainwright boosted their target price on Merus from $23.00 to $30.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Tuesday, March 23rd. Royal Bank of Canada boosted their target price on Merus from $15.00 to $21.00 and gave the stock a “sector perform” rating in a research note on Tuesday, March 23rd. Finally, SVB Leerink began coverage on Merus in a research note on Monday, March 22nd. They set an “outperform” rating and a $33.00 target price for the company. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $25.50.

In other news, major shareholder Bvf Partners L. P/Il acquired 79,500 shares of Merus stock in a transaction on Monday, March 22nd. The stock was bought at an average price of $22.75 per share, for a total transaction of $1,808,625.00. The acquisition was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, major shareholder Bvf Partners L. P/Il acquired 250,000 shares of Merus stock in a transaction on Tuesday, March 16th. The stock was purchased at an average price of $23.00 per share, with a total value of $5,750,000.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. In the last quarter, insiders acquired 1,174,180 shares of company stock valued at $28,464,455. 7.40% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Several institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. BlackRock Inc. raised its stake in shares of Merus by 3.5% during the third quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 74,391 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $893,000 after purchasing an additional 2,534 shares during the last quarter. Credit Suisse AG purchased a new stake in shares of Merus during the fourth quarter worth approximately $186,000. UBS Asset Management Americas Inc. purchased a new stake in shares of Merus during the third quarter worth approximately $142,000. State Street Corp raised its stake in shares of Merus by 94.9% during the third quarter. State Street Corp now owns 26,268 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock worth $315,000 after purchasing an additional 12,790 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Merus during the fourth quarter worth approximately $435,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 62.57% of the company’s stock.

Shares of Merus stock traded down $0.23 on Friday, reaching $23.06. 59,159 shares of the company were exchanged, compared to its average volume of 179,676. Merus has a 1-year low of $10.18 and a 1-year high of $31.27. The company has a market cap of $879.21 million, a P/E ratio of -7.51 and a beta of 0.83. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $22.26 and its 200-day moving average price is $18.70.

About Merus

Merus N.V., a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company, engages in the discovery and development of bispecific antibody therapeutics in the Netherlands. Its bispecific antibody candidate pipeline includes Zenocutuzumab (MCLA-128), which is in a phase 2 clinical trial for the treatment of patients with metastatic breast cancer, as well as in Phase 1/2 for the pancreatic and lung cancer, and other solid tumors.

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