Hershey Co (HSY) Stake Lowered by Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co.

Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co. lessened its stake in Hershey Co (NYSE:HSY) by 35.2% in the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The fund owned 6,762 shares of the company’s stock after selling 3,670 shares during the quarter. Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Co.’s holdings in Hershey were worth $768,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. State Street Corp raised its stake in Hershey by 1.2% in the 2nd quarter. State Street Corp now owns 6,270,169 shares of the company’s stock valued at $673,225,000 after acquiring an additional 75,548 shares during the period. Janus Henderson Group PLC raised its stake in Hershey by 15.4% in the 3rd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 4,368,862 shares of the company’s stock valued at $476,949,000 after acquiring an additional 582,715 shares during the period. APG Asset Management N.V. raised its stake in Hershey by 45.4% in the 4th quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 1,885,679 shares of the company’s stock valued at $178,251,000 after acquiring an additional 588,500 shares during the period. Marathon Asset Management LLP raised its stake in Hershey by 39.2% in the 4th quarter. Marathon Asset Management LLP now owns 1,694,259 shares of the company’s stock valued at $192,322,000 after acquiring an additional 477,539 shares during the period. Finally, First Eagle Investment Management LLC raised its stake in Hershey by 106.0% in the 3rd quarter. First Eagle Investment Management LLC now owns 1,115,299 shares of the company’s stock valued at $121,757,000 after acquiring an additional 573,799 shares during the period. 51.97% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Hershey Co (NYSE:HSY) opened at $100.17 on Tuesday. The company has a current ratio of 0.96, a quick ratio of 0.60 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.21. The firm has a market capitalization of $21,692.48, a price-to-earnings ratio of 27.37, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.51 and a beta of 0.26. Hershey Co has a 12-month low of $100.17 and a 12-month high of $116.49.

Hershey (NYSE:HSY) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, February 1st. The company reported $1.03 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the consensus estimate of $1.06 by ($0.03). The firm had revenue of $1.94 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.96 billion. Hershey had a return on equity of 116.74% and a net margin of 10.42%. The firm’s quarterly revenue was down 1.5% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter in the previous year, the business earned $1.17 EPS. sell-side analysts forecast that Hershey Co will post 5.35 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Hershey declared that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Thursday, October 26th that authorizes the company to repurchase $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the company to buy shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase programs are usually a sign that the company’s board believes its shares are 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 given a dividend of $0.656 per share. This represents a $2.62 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.62%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, February 22nd. Hershey’s payout ratio is 71.58%.

In related news, SVP D Michael Wege sold 15,517 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Monday, November 13th. The stock was sold at an average price of $108.18, for a total value of $1,678,629.06. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, CEO Michele Buck sold 400 shares of the firm’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 completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 163,697 shares in the company, valued at approximately $18,260,400.35. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 17,117 shares of company stock worth $1,855,629 in the last quarter. Company insiders own 0.92% of the company’s stock.

HSY has been the topic of a number of research analyst reports. Susquehanna Bancshares set a $113.00 price target on Hershey and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Thursday, October 26th. 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. UBS Group dropped their price target on Hershey from $110.00 to $106.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock 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, Zacks Investment Research cut Hershey from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Monday, October 30th. Four equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $111.72.

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Hershey Company Profile

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Hershey (NYSE:HSY)

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