Hershey (NYSE:HSY) had its price target trimmed by Argus from $125.00 to $120.00 in a research report released on Tuesday, February 6th, Marketbeat Ratings reports. The firm currently has a buy rating on the stock.
Other equities research analysts have also recently issued research reports about the company. Morgan Stanley cut Hershey from an equal weight rating to an underweight rating in a research note on Wednesday, January 10th. Zacks Investment Research cut Hershey from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note on Thursday, January 11th. Citigroup increased their price target on Hershey from $126.00 to $130.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Friday, October 27th. BMO Capital Markets restated a hold rating and issued a $105.00 price target on shares of Hershey in a research note on Friday, October 27th. Finally, Sanford C. Bernstein set a $124.00 price target on Hershey and gave the company a buy rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 19th. Four investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $110.84.
Shares of Hershey (HSY) opened at $99.54 on Tuesday. Hershey has a 12 month low of $97.62 and a 12 month high of $116.49. The stock has a market capitalization of $21,020.45, a P/E ratio of 27.20, a PEG ratio of 2.15 and a beta of 0.26. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.21, a quick ratio of 0.60 and a current ratio of 0.96.
Hershey (NYSE:HSY) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 1st. The company reported $1.03 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.06 by ($0.03). Hershey had a return on equity of 116.74% and a net margin of 10.42%. The company had revenue of $1.94 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.96 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.17 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 1.5% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts forecast that Hershey will post 5.36 earnings per share for the current year.
Hershey declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share repurchase plan on Thursday, October 26th that permits the company to repurchase $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization permits the company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, March 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, February 23rd will be issued a $0.656 dividend. This represents a $2.62 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.64%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, February 22nd. Hershey’s dividend payout ratio is 71.58%.
In other Hershey news, CEO Michele Buck sold 400 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, January 26th. The stock was sold at an average price of $111.55, for a total value of $44,620.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 163,697 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $18,260,400.35. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Over the last ninety days, insiders sold 1,200 shares of company stock worth $133,800. Insiders own 0.92% of the company’s stock.
Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. MANA Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Hershey during the 4th quarter worth $451,000. HS Management Partners LLC grew its holdings in shares of Hershey by 11.9% during the 4th quarter. HS Management Partners LLC now owns 975,150 shares of the company’s stock worth $110,689,000 after purchasing an additional 103,475 shares in the last quarter. Scotia Capital Inc. grew its holdings in shares of Hershey by 3.6% during the 4th quarter. Scotia Capital Inc. now owns 21,800 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,475,000 after purchasing an additional 760 shares in the last quarter. Granite Investment Advisors LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Hershey during the 4th quarter worth $1,934,000. Finally, Truewealth LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Hershey during the 4th quarter worth $114,000. 51.76% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
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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.
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