UBS cuts Germany’s Merck Group share price target to €63 from €76

19 September 2011 11:23  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--UBS has lowered its share-price target for Germany-based specialty and pharmaceutical company Merck KGaA to €63 ($86) from €76, the Swiss investment bank said on Monday.

“Upcoming competitor data may suggest enhanced pressure on [Merck’s] key pharma products,” UBS said.

The investment bank also lowered estimates for Merck’s liquid crystal business in the second half of 2011, seeing potential for weaker demand because of softer LCD sales.

UBS maintains it “neutral rating” for Merck, it added.

In July, Merck recorded a net loss of €85.9m in the second quarter of 2011 as its Merck Serono division struggled with overcapacity problems and the firm wrote off the value of several experimental treatments.

Revenues for the quarter jumped by 16% to €2.56bn, compared with €2.2bn during the same period in 2010, however, the company made a net loss of €85.9m compared with a profit of €183.4m a year earlier.

UBS had raised Merck’s share price target in June to reflect the performance of the European pharmaceutical sector and expectations of less near-term risk.

At 09:19 GMT on Monday, Merck’s shares were trading on Germany’s Xetra Stock Exchange at €58.86, down by 1.13%.

($1 = €0.73)

By: Franco Capaldo
+44 (0)20 8652 3214

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