Wescott Financial Advisory Group LLC Buys Shares of 3,643 The Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY)

Wescott Financial Advisory Group LLC bought a new stake in shares of The Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY) during the second quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The fund bought 3,643 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $643,000.

Other large investors also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Geode Capital Management LLC boosted its holdings in shares of The Hershey by 0.9% during the first quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 2,835,228 shares of the company’s stock worth $447,543,000 after purchasing an additional 25,916 shares during the last quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of The Hershey by 1.4% during the second quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,404,450 shares of the company’s stock worth $418,808,000 after purchasing an additional 32,856 shares during the last quarter. Champlain Investment Partners LLC boosted its holdings in shares of The Hershey by 4.5% during the first quarter. Champlain Investment Partners LLC now owns 1,678,805 shares of the company’s stock worth $265,520,000 after purchasing an additional 72,560 shares during the last quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. boosted its holdings in shares of The Hershey by 0.9% during the first quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 1,385,958 shares of the company’s stock worth $219,195,000 after purchasing an additional 12,256 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Nordea Investment Management AB boosted its holdings in shares of The Hershey by 114.5% during the first quarter. Nordea Investment Management AB now owns 1,106,753 shares of the company’s stock worth $174,878,000 after purchasing an additional 590,867 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 52.34% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE HSY traded up $1.35 during trading on Wednesday, hitting $175.90. The company had a trading volume of 7,790 shares, compared to its average volume of 884,559. The company has a market cap of $36.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 25.37, a PEG ratio of 3.30 and a beta of 0.36. The Hershey Company has a 52 week low of $134.00 and a 52 week high of $182.71. The business’s 50-day moving average is $177.85 and its 200 day moving average is $169.43. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.80, a quick ratio of 0.73 and a current ratio of 1.40.

The Hershey (NYSE:HSY) last announced its earnings results on Thursday, July 29th. The company reported $1.47 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.42 by $0.05. The Hershey had a net margin of 16.52% and a return on equity of 63.62%. The company had revenue of $1.99 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.85 billion. On average, research analysts expect that The Hershey Company will post 6.92 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, September 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 20th will be paid a dividend of $0.901 per share. This is an increase from The Hershey’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.80. This represents a $3.60 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.05%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, August 19th. The Hershey’s payout ratio is 57.23%.

In other news, CEO Michele Buck sold 2,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction on Monday, June 28th. The shares were sold at an average price of $175.15, for a total transaction of $437,875.00. Following the transaction, the chief executive officer now directly owns 180,497 shares in the company, valued at approximately $31,614,049.55. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at this hyperlink. Also, Director Pamela M. Arway sold 319 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, July 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $175.88, for a total transaction of $56,105.72. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 15,861 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,789,632.68. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 15,079 shares of company stock worth $2,674,010. Company insiders own 0.32% of the company’s stock.

A number of brokerages recently weighed in on HSY. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft lifted their target price on The Hershey from $166.00 to $173.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Thursday, July 22nd. Morgan Stanley lifted their target price on The Hershey from $166.00 to $182.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a report on Friday, July 30th. Credit Suisse Group raised their price objective on The Hershey from $180.00 to $194.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, July 30th. Royal Bank of Canada boosted their price objective on The Hershey from $188.00 to $189.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, July 30th. Finally, BMO Capital Markets boosted their price objective on The Hershey from $175.00 to $181.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a report on Friday, July 30th. Six research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, The Hershey presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus target price of $175.38.

The Hershey Company Profile

The Hershey Co engages in the manufacture and market of chocolate and sugar confectionery products. The firm operates through the following geographical segments: North America; and International and Other. The North America segment is responsible for the traditional chocolate and non-chocolate confectionery market position of the company, as well as its grocery and snacks market positions, in the United States and Canada.

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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for The Hershey (NYSE:HSY)

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