Mercer International Inc. (MERC) Rating Lowered to Neutral at CSFB

Mercer International Inc. (NASDAQ:MERC) (TSE:MRI.U) was downgraded by equities research analysts at CSFB from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a report issued on Friday. They currently have a $15.00 price objective on the basic materials company’s stock. CSFB’s target price would indicate a potential upside of 7.53% from the stock’s current price.

A number of other equities research analysts have also recently commented on MERC. BidaskClub upgraded Mercer International from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research report on Monday, July 24th. TD Securities raised their target price on Mercer International from $13.00 to $15.75 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research report on Monday, July 31st. Royal Bank Of Canada upgraded Mercer International from a “sector perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and raised their target price for the company from $12.00 to $15.00 in a research report on Wednesday, October 18th. Finally, Credit Suisse Group cut Mercer International from an “outperform” rating to a “neutral” rating in a research report on Thursday. Five research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the company. The company presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $15.94.

Mercer International (NASDAQ:MERC) traded down 1.06% during trading on Friday, hitting $13.95. The stock had a trading volume of 373,285 shares. Mercer International has a 52-week low of $7.75 and a 52-week high of $14.60. The firm’s 50-day moving average price is $12.25 and its 200-day moving average price is $11.64. The company has a market cap of $906.37 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 23.76 and a beta of 1.49.

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In related news, Director James Shepherd sold 4,560 shares of Mercer International stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 2nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $10.91, for a total value of $49,749.60. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 31,450 shares in the company, valued at approximately $343,119.50. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, major shareholder Peter R. Kellogg acquired 2,658,743 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, October 10th. The stock was purchased at an average price of $12.41 per share, for a total transaction of $32,995,000.63. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders purchased 2,858,743 shares of company stock worth $35,311,751 and sold 218,060 shares worth $2,627,085. Insiders own 4.90% of the company’s stock.

A number of hedge funds have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Walthausen & Co. LLC boosted its holdings in Mercer International by 8.1% in the 2nd quarter. Walthausen & Co. LLC now owns 1,051,619 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $12,094,000 after buying an additional 79,242 shares during the last quarter. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. boosted its holdings in Mercer International by 14.1% in the 2nd quarter. Kennedy Capital Management Inc. now owns 386,307 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $4,443,000 after buying an additional 47,623 shares during the last quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. boosted its holdings in Mercer International by 22.2% in the 2nd quarter. Russell Investments Group Ltd. now owns 314,654 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $3,618,000 after buying an additional 57,063 shares during the last quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in Mercer International by 3.0% in the 1st quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 283,990 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $3,322,000 after buying an additional 8,231 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Bank of New York Mellon Corp boosted its holdings in Mercer International by 11.0% in the 2nd quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 240,556 shares of the basic materials company’s stock worth $2,767,000 after buying an additional 23,872 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors own 79.88% of the company’s stock.

Mercer International Company Profile

Mercer International Inc is a producer of northern bleached softwood kraft (NBSK) pulp, which is pulp that is sold on the open market. The Company also produces and sells tall oil, a by-product of its production process, which is used as both a chemical additive and as a green energy source. It produces and sells NBSK pulp, which is a bleached kraft pulp manufactured using northern softwood.

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