Wells Fargo & Company Raises Hershey (NYSE:HSY) Price Target to $210.00

Hershey (NYSE:HSYFree Report) had its target price increased by Wells Fargo & Company from $190.00 to $210.00 in a research report report published on Friday morning, Benzinga reports. The brokerage currently has an equal weight rating on the stock.

Several other equities research analysts also recently issued reports on HSY. Sanford C. Bernstein raised shares of Hershey from a market perform rating to an outperform rating and set a $235.00 price objective for the company in a research report on Monday, January 29th. Stifel Nicolaus increased their price objective on shares of Hershey from $195.00 to $205.00 and gave the stock a hold rating in a research report on Thursday, January 25th. Royal Bank of Canada reissued a sector perform rating and set a $213.00 price objective on shares of Hershey in a research report on Wednesday, February 7th. DA Davidson began coverage on shares of Hershey in a research report on Friday, December 8th. They set a neutral rating and a $205.00 price objective for the company. Finally, Citigroup began coverage on shares of Hershey in a research report on Thursday, February 1st. They set a neutral rating and a $213.00 price objective for the company. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have given a hold rating and six have given a buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat, the stock presently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $228.33.

Read Our Latest Stock Analysis on HSY

Hershey Stock Down 0.9 %

Shares of NYSE:HSY opened at $193.74 on Friday. Hershey has a 52 week low of $178.82 and a 52 week high of $276.88. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.92, a quick ratio of 0.52 and a current ratio of 0.97. The company has a market capitalization of $39.62 billion, a PE ratio of 21.41, a PEG ratio of 2.63 and a beta of 0.36. The company has a 50 day moving average price of $189.47 and a two-hundred day moving average price of $198.76.

Hershey (NYSE:HSYGet Free Report) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, February 8th. The company reported $2.02 EPS for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.95 by $0.07. Hershey had a net margin of 16.67% and a return on equity of 51.79%. The firm had revenue of $2.66 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.72 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the firm earned $2.02 earnings per share. The business’s quarterly revenue was up .2% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts forecast that Hershey will post 9.6 earnings per share for the current year.

Hershey Increases Dividend

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 15th. Stockholders of record on Tuesday, February 20th will be paid a dividend of $1.37 per share. This represents a $5.48 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.83%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, February 16th. This is a boost from Hershey’s previous quarterly dividend of $1.19. Hershey’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 52.71%.

Insider Buying and Selling

In related news, CAO Jennifer Mccalman sold 453 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $198.54, for a total transaction of $89,938.62. Following the transaction, the chief accounting officer now directly owns 1,862 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $369,681.48. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. In other news, CFO Steven E. Voskuil sold 1,500 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $192.71, for a total value of $289,065.00. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 32,816 shares in the company, valued at approximately $6,323,971.36. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, CAO Jennifer Mccalman sold 453 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, February 2nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $198.54, for a total transaction of $89,938.62. Following the completion of the sale, the chief accounting officer now owns 1,862 shares in the company, valued at $369,681.48. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 7,018 shares of company stock valued at $1,331,734. 0.22% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

Institutional Investors Weigh In On Hershey

Several hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Norges Bank bought a new stake in shares of Hershey in the 4th quarter valued at $349,448,000. Nordea Investment Management AB increased its stake in shares of Hershey by 143.7% in the 3rd quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 2,465,403 shares of the company’s stock valued at $496,039,000 after acquiring an additional 1,453,819 shares in the last quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP increased its stake in Hershey by 2,693.0% during the 1st quarter. Wellington Management Group LLP now owns 1,094,755 shares of the company’s stock valued at $237,156,000 after purchasing an additional 1,055,559 shares in the last quarter. Morgan Stanley increased its stake in Hershey by 57.2% during the 4th quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 2,648,666 shares of the company’s stock valued at $613,352,000 after purchasing an additional 964,019 shares in the last quarter. Finally, BlackRock Inc. increased its stake in Hershey by 3.2% during the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 15,160,022 shares of the company’s stock valued at $3,785,458,000 after purchasing an additional 465,423 shares in the last quarter. 56.47% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Hershey

(Get Free Report)

The Hershey Company, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and sale of confectionery products and pantry items in the United States and internationally. The company operates through three segments: North America Confectionery, North America Salty Snacks, and International. It offers chocolate and non-chocolate confectionery products; gum and mint refreshment products, including mints, chewing gums, and bubble gums; pantry items, such as baking ingredients, toppings, beverages, and sundae syrups; and snack items comprising spreads, bars, snack bites, mixes, popcorn, and pretzels.

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Analyst Recommendations for Hershey (NYSE:HSY)

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