BMO Capital Markets Reiterates Hold Rating for Hershey Company (The) (HSY)

BMO Capital Markets restated their hold rating on shares of Hershey Company (The) (NYSE:HSY) in a research report sent to investors on Friday, October 27th. They currently have a $105.00 price target on the stock.

HSY has been the subject of several other reports. Zacks Investment Research raised Hershey Company (The) from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $122.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, October 2nd. Credit Suisse Group reissued a buy rating and set a $121.00 price target on shares of Hershey Company (The) in a research report on Friday, July 28th. Royal Bank Of Canada reissued a sector perform rating and set a $115.00 price target (up from $114.00) on shares of Hershey Company (The) in a research report on Thursday, July 27th. Susquehanna Bancshares Inc set a $118.00 price objective on Hershey Company (The) and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, July 26th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG reaffirmed a hold rating and issued a $111.00 price objective (down from $112.00) on shares of Hershey Company (The) in a research report on Thursday, July 27th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have issued a hold rating and four have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $113.35.

Shares of Hershey Company (NYSE HSY) opened at $108.60 on Friday. Hershey Company has a fifty-two week low of $95.68 and a fifty-two week high of $116.49. The stock has a market capitalization of $22,878.54, a PE ratio of 22.16, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.95 and a beta of 0.36. The company has a quick ratio of 0.55, a current ratio of 0.95 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.45.

Hershey Company (The) (NYSE:HSY) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 26th. The company reported $1.33 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.29 by $0.04. The company had revenue of $2.03 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.01 billion. Hershey Company (The) had a return on equity of 124.06% and a net margin of 9.52%. Hershey Company (The)’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.5% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.29 earnings per share. sell-side analysts predict that Hershey Company will post 4.8 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 22nd will be paid a dividend of $0.656 per share. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 21st. This represents a $2.62 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.42%. Hershey Company (The)’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 77.98%.

Hershey Company (The) announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a share buyback plan on Thursday, October 26th that allows the company to repurchase $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization allows the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

In related news, SVP D Michael Wege sold 1,100 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, August 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $105.90, for a total transaction of $116,490.00. Following the sale, the senior vice president now owns 27,766 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,940,419.40. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, major shareholder Hershey Trust Co Trustee In Tr sold 4,500,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $106.01, for a total value of $477,045,000.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders sold 4,519,232 shares of company stock worth $479,154,674. Company insiders own 0.92% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in HSY. WFG Advisors LP boosted its holdings in shares of Hershey Company (The) by 25.2% during the 2nd quarter. WFG Advisors LP now owns 998 shares of the company’s stock valued at $107,000 after acquiring an additional 201 shares in the last quarter. Sun Life Financial INC lifted its holdings in Hershey Company (The) by 12,637.5% during the 2nd quarter. Sun Life Financial INC now owns 1,019 shares of the company’s stock worth $109,000 after buying an additional 1,011 shares during the period. QCI Asset Management Inc. NY lifted its holdings in Hershey Company (The) by 10.8% during the 2nd quarter. QCI Asset Management Inc. NY now owns 1,024 shares of the company’s stock worth $110,000 after buying an additional 100 shares during the period. Fiduciary Trust Co. acquired a new position in Hershey Company (The) during the 2nd quarter worth about $125,000. Finally, Invictus RG acquired a new position in Hershey Company (The) during the 1st quarter worth about $155,000. 50.22% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

About Hershey Company (The)

The Hershey Company is a producer of chocolate in North America. The Company’s principal product offerings include chocolate and non-chocolate confectionery products; gum and mint refreshment products; pantry items, such as baking ingredients and beverages, and snack items, such as spreads, meat snacks, bars and snack bites and mixes.

Analyst Recommendations for Hershey Company (The) (NYSE:HSY)

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