The Well-Respected Vanguard Group (And Affiliated Funds) Increased Their Holdings In Merck’s Shares During 2015

UPDATED: Well. . . that was quick! BlackRock just disclosed that it too has upped its stake — to 6.9 per cent (from about 6.5 per cent) — or an additional five-plus million shares. New post shortly — with a graphic — on that. Again, good news. [End, update.]

The SEC Schedule 13G amendment just filed is pretty self explanatory. We will likely see a few more of these, from BlackRock, Capital World and Wellington, among others — in the coming week or two.

You will recall that in last year’s proxy, Vanguard showed as holding about 5.4 per cent of all of Kenilworth’s outstanding equity. The Group added significantly to their positions, during the year, and as of the December 31, 2015 SEC-required reporting date, in the aggregate, they then held 6.0 per cent. That’s an increase of around 12 million shares.

If one assumes that the funds bought in at an average of $55 per share (the purchase prices are not disclosed to the SEC, however, just to be clear) — the Vanguard Group of affiliated funds have now added about $660 million to their holdings of Merck.

So — two-thirds of a billion dollars, in new investments. That’s a vote of confidence in Mr. Frazier’s leadership, as Vanguard is very much a “stake and hold” long-haul player.

Now you know — and. . . the blogging forecast here calls for nearly no new items, until next Tuesday — out of pocket, with travel plans. . . Smile. . . Be excellent to one another, and keep it spinning in good Karma!

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