Manning & Napier Group LLC grew its position in shares of Hershey Co (NYSE:HSY) by 5.2% during the third quarter, Holdings Channel reports. The institutional investor owned 61,505 shares of the company’s stock after purchasing an additional 3,015 shares during the quarter. Manning & Napier Group LLC’s holdings in Hershey were worth $6,272,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently modified their holdings of the company. Lourd Capital LLC purchased a new stake in Hershey during the 3rd quarter worth about $782,000. Pennsylvania Trust Co raised its holdings in shares of Hershey by 14.1% in the 3rd quarter. Pennsylvania Trust Co now owns 48,732 shares of the company’s stock valued at $4,971,000 after acquiring an additional 6,016 shares in the last quarter. We Are One Seven LLC purchased a new stake in shares of Hershey in the 3rd quarter valued at about $771,000. Private Trust Co. NA purchased a new stake in shares of Hershey in the 3rd quarter valued at about $213,000. Finally, Dalton Greiner Hartman Maher & Co. purchased a new stake in shares of Hershey in the 3rd quarter valued at about $373,000. 52.70% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.
Shares of Hershey stock opened at $103.41 on Friday. 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 stock has a market cap of $21.34 billion, a PE ratio of 21.50, a PEG ratio of 2.17 and a beta of 0.32. Hershey Co has a 12 month low of $89.10 and a 12 month high of $115.82.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, September 14th. Stockholders of record on Friday, August 24th were given a dividend of $0.722 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Thursday, August 23rd. This is a positive change from Hershey’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.66. This represents a $2.89 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.79%. Hershey’s dividend payout ratio is 60.71%.
Several analysts have weighed in on the company. Credit Suisse Group set a $85.00 price target on Hershey and gave the company a “sell” rating in a report on Thursday, September 13th. Zacks Investment Research raised Hershey from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $117.00 price target on the stock in a report on Monday, October 8th. Deutsche Bank set a $110.00 price target on Hershey and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Friday, September 14th. ValuEngine raised Hershey from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 15th. Finally, Piper Jaffray Companies set a $100.00 price target on Hershey and gave the company a “hold” rating in a report on Wednesday, August 29th. Five analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, twelve have assigned a hold rating and three have given a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $103.39.
In other news, insider Michele Buck sold 1,500 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Friday, July 20th. The stock was sold at an average price of $92.26, for a total transaction of $138,390.00. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 175,394 shares in the company, valued at approximately $16,181,850.44. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Also, CFO Patricia A. Little sold 17,589 shares of the stock in a transaction dated Monday, September 24th. The shares were sold at an average price of $103.00, for a total value of $1,811,667.00. Following the transaction, the chief financial officer now owns 37,086 shares in the company, valued at $3,819,858. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders have sold a total of 74,546 shares of company stock worth $7,668,954 over the last quarter. Corporate insiders own 0.87% of the company’s stock.
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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