Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. lowered its stake in Hershey Company (The) (NYSE:HSY) by 0.6% in the third quarter, according to the company in its most recent disclosure with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 408,544 shares of the company’s stock after selling 2,670 shares during the period. Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Holdings Inc. owned 0.19% of Hershey Company (The) worth $44,601,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other institutional investors also recently modified their holdings of the stock. Janus Henderson Group PLC grew its holdings in Hershey Company (The) by 19,853.3% during the 2nd quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 3,786,147 shares of the company’s stock worth $406,519,000 after acquiring an additional 3,767,172 shares during the period. APG Asset Management N.V. grew its holdings in Hershey Company (The) by 417.5% during the 3rd quarter. APG Asset Management N.V. now owns 1,297,179 shares of the company’s stock worth $141,613,000 after acquiring an additional 1,046,500 shares during the period. AJO LP grew its holdings in Hershey Company (The) by 13,232.0% during the 2nd quarter. AJO LP now owns 747,924 shares of the company’s stock worth $80,305,000 after acquiring an additional 742,314 shares during the period. Renaissance Technologies LLC grew its holdings in Hershey Company (The) by 60.3% during the 2nd quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 1,699,400 shares of the company’s stock worth $182,465,000 after acquiring an additional 639,400 shares during the period. Finally, Koch Industries Inc. acquired a new stake in Hershey Company (The) during the 2nd quarter worth $614,000. 49.16% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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Shares of Hershey Company (HSY) traded up $1.00 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $110.10. 922,000 shares of the company’s stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,035,167. The company has a quick ratio of 0.55, a current ratio of 0.95 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.45. Hershey Company has a 52-week low of $95.68 and a 52-week high of $116.49. The company has a market cap of $23,200.00, a PE ratio of 22.26, a PEG ratio of 2.97 and a beta of 0.36.

Hershey Company (The) (NYSE:HSY) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, October 26th. The company reported $1.33 EPS for the quarter, topping the consensus estimate of $1.29 by $0.04. Hershey Company (The) had a net margin of 9.52% and a return on equity of 124.06%. The firm had revenue of $2.03 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.01 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the firm posted $1.29 EPS. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.5% on a year-over-year basis. research analysts expect that Hershey Company will post 4.8 EPS for the current year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 15th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 22nd will be given a dividend of $0.656 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Tuesday, November 21st. This represents a $2.62 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.38%. Hershey Company (The)’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 85.34%.

Hershey Company (The) declared that its board has authorized a stock repurchase program on Thursday, October 26th that permits the company to buyback $100.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization permits the company to purchase shares of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.

HSY has been the subject of a number of analyst reports. Citigroup Inc. lifted their target price on shares of Hershey Company (The) from $126.00 to $130.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, October 27th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Hershey Company (The) from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $122.00 target price for the company in a report on Monday, October 2nd. Credit Suisse Group reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $121.00 target price on shares of Hershey Company (The) in a report on Friday, July 28th. Susquehanna Bancshares Inc set a $118.00 target price on shares of Hershey Company (The) and gave the stock a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, July 26th. Finally, Deutsche Bank AG reaffirmed a “hold” rating and set a $111.00 target price (down previously from $112.00) on shares of Hershey Company (The) in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have assigned a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $113.35.

In other news, major shareholder Hershey Trust Co Trustee In Tr sold 4,500,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, August 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $106.01, for a total transaction of $477,045,000.00. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, SVP D Michael Wege sold 1,100 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, September 15th. The stock was sold at an average price of $109.43, for a total transaction of $120,373.00. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 27,666 shares in the company, valued at $3,027,490.38. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 4,534,049 shares of company stock worth $480,760,013 over the last three months. Insiders own 0.92% of the company’s stock.

About Hershey Company (The)

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 Company (The) (NYSE:HSY)

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