Swarthmore Group Inc. purchased a new stake in The Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY) during the 1st quarter, according to the company in its most recent 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm purchased 4,279 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $677,000.

Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also bought and sold shares of the company. CBIZ Investment Advisory Services LLC raised its holdings in The Hershey by 77.9% in the fourth quarter. CBIZ Investment Advisory Services LLC now owns 338 shares of the company’s stock valued at $29,000 after buying an additional 148 shares during the period. Twin Tree Management LP raised its holdings in The Hershey by 2,728.6% in the fourth quarter. Twin Tree Management LP now owns 198 shares of the company’s stock valued at $30,000 after buying an additional 191 shares during the period. SOA Wealth Advisors LLC. purchased a new position in The Hershey in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $30,000. ShoreHaven Wealth Partners LLC purchased a new position in The Hershey in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $37,000. Finally, Regent Peak Wealth Advisors LLC purchased a new position in The Hershey in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $37,000. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 52.12% of the company’s stock.

Shares of NYSE HSY opened at $166.74 on Tuesday. The Hershey Company has a fifty-two week low of $125.50 and a fifty-two week high of $167.80. The firm’s 50-day simple moving average is $159.17 and its 200 day simple moving average is $151.38. The company has a quick ratio of 1.01, a current ratio of 1.44 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.98. The stock has a market cap of $34.54 billion, a P/E ratio of 29.25, a P/E/G ratio of 2.98 and a beta of 0.31.

The Hershey (NYSE:HSY) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, April 29th. The company reported $1.92 earnings per share for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.80 by $0.12. The Hershey had a net margin of 14.87% and a return on equity of 70.30%. The business had revenue of $2.30 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.12 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.63 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was up 12.7% on a year-over-year basis. On average, sell-side analysts anticipate that The Hershey Company will post 6.23 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, June 15th. Shareholders of record on Friday, May 21st will be given a $0.804 dividend. This represents a $3.22 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.93%. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, May 20th. The Hershey’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 55.71%.

A number of analysts have recently issued reports on the stock. Credit Suisse Group lifted their price objective on shares of The Hershey from $172.00 to $175.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research note on Friday, February 5th. Citigroup lifted their price objective on shares of The Hershey from $172.00 to $187.00 in a research note on Monday. Deutsche Bank Aktiengesellschaft lifted their price objective on shares of The Hershey from $160.00 to $162.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, April 27th. Morgan Stanley lifted their price objective on shares of The Hershey from $152.00 to $166.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research note on Friday. Finally, The Goldman Sachs Group upgraded shares of The Hershey from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and lifted their price objective for the company from $171.00 to $181.00 in a research note on Wednesday, April 21st. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the stock. The Hershey presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $165.33.

In other The Hershey news, SVP Christopher M. Scalia sold 8,021 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, March 12th. The shares were sold at an average price of $152.47, for a total value of $1,222,961.87. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 7,318 shares in the company, valued at $1,115,775.46. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, CEO Michele Buck sold 2,500 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, March 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $146.06, for a total transaction of $365,150.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 192,331 shares in the company, valued at $28,091,865.86. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 18,926 shares of company stock worth $2,914,171. 29.39% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

The Hershey Profile

The Hershey Company, together with its subsidiaries, manufactures and sells confectionery products and pantry items. The company operates in 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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for The Hershey (NYSE:HSY)

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