Wall Street brokerages expect that Hershey Co (NYSE:HSY) will report earnings of $1.55 per share for the current quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Five analysts have issued estimates for Hershey’s earnings, with the highest EPS estimate coming in at $1.60 and the lowest estimate coming in at $1.50. Hershey reported earnings of $1.33 per share during the same quarter last year, which would suggest a positive year-over-year growth rate of 16.5%. The company is expected to report its next quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 25th.
According to Zacks, analysts expect that Hershey will report full-year earnings of $5.36 per share for the current year, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.34 to $5.39. For the next financial year, analysts anticipate that the company will post earnings of $5.65 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.50 to $5.81. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of analysts that that provide coverage for Hershey.
Hershey (NYSE:HSY) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, July 26th. The company reported $1.14 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.10 by $0.04. Hershey had a net margin of 13.40% and a return on equity of 108.82%. The company had revenue of $1.75 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.74 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company earned $1.09 EPS. The firm’s revenue was up 5.3% on a year-over-year basis.
HSY has been the subject of a number of research reports. Piper Jaffray Companies set a $100.00 price objective on shares of Hershey and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Wednesday, August 29th. Zacks Investment Research cut shares of Hershey from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Monday, May 28th. Credit Suisse Group cut shares of Hershey from a “neutral” rating to a “sell” rating and cut their price objective for the company from $90.00 to $80.00 in a research note on Wednesday, June 13th. Stifel Nicolaus upped their price objective on shares of Hershey from $90.00 to $95.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday, July 27th. Finally, Consumer Edge cut shares of Hershey from an “overweight” rating to an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Monday, July 9th. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have issued a hold rating and two have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $102.35.
In other Hershey news, SVP Kevin R. Walling sold 30,835 shares of the stock in a transaction on Friday, August 17th. The shares were sold at an average price of $101.18, for a total transaction of $3,119,885.30. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 57,611 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,829,080.98. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link. Also, insider Michele Buck sold 1,500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, August 20th. The shares were sold at an average price of $101.90, for a total transaction of $152,850.00. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 173,894 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $17,719,798.60. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 33,835 shares of company stock valued at $3,411,125 in the last three months. 0.87% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.
A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in HSY. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. raised its holdings in Hershey by 6.8% in the 1st quarter. Ladenburg Thalmann Financial Services Inc. now owns 68,083 shares of the company’s stock worth $6,724,000 after purchasing an additional 4,324 shares in the last quarter. Swiss National Bank raised its holdings in Hershey by 2.2% in the 2nd quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 768,826 shares of the company’s stock worth $71,547,000 after purchasing an additional 16,200 shares in the last quarter. Sand Hill Global Advisors LLC raised its holdings in Hershey by 959.7% in the 2nd quarter. Sand Hill Global Advisors LLC now owns 34,366 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,198,000 after purchasing an additional 31,123 shares in the last quarter. Connor Clark & Lunn Investment Management Ltd. raised its holdings in Hershey by 318.1% in the 2nd quarter. Connor Clark & Lunn Investment Management Ltd. now owns 27,075 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,520,000 after purchasing an additional 20,600 shares in the last quarter. Finally, First Republic Investment Management Inc. raised its holdings in Hershey by 358.7% in the 1st quarter. First Republic Investment Management Inc. now owns 109,509 shares of the company’s stock worth $1,837,000 after purchasing an additional 85,636 shares in the last quarter. 52.70% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Shares of Hershey stock traded up $1.78 during trading on Wednesday, reaching $106.02. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 1,404,900 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,236,522. Hershey has a 52-week low of $89.10 and a 52-week high of $115.82. The stock has a market capitalization of $21.69 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.27, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 2.21 and a beta of 0.32. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 3.05, a quick ratio of 0.58 and a current ratio of 0.94.
The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, September 14th. Shareholders of record on Friday, August 24th will be given a dividend of $0.722 per share. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, August 23rd. This represents a $2.89 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.72%. This is a boost from Hershey’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.66. Hershey’s dividend payout ratio is presently 60.71%.
Hershey Company Profile
The Hershey Company, together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells confectionery products. The company operates through two segments, North America; and International and Other. It offers chocolate and non-chocolate confectionery products; gum and mint refreshment products comprising mints, chewing gums, and bubble gums; pantry items, such as baking ingredients, toppings, beverages, and sundae syrups; and snack items, including spreads, meat snacks, bars and snack bites, mixes, popcorn and protein bars, and cookies.
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