Analysts Anticipate The Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY) to Announce $1.66 EPS

Equities research analysts forecast that The Hershey Company (NYSE:HSYGet Rating) will report earnings of $1.66 per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks Investment Research. Six analysts have provided estimates for Hershey’s earnings, with estimates ranging from $1.53 to $1.76. Hershey reported earnings of $1.47 per share in the same quarter last year, which suggests a positive year over year growth rate of 12.9%. The business is scheduled to announce its next earnings results on Monday, January 1st.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Hershey will report full year earnings of $8.03 per share for the current fiscal year, with EPS estimates ranging from $7.90 to $8.10. For the next financial year, analysts forecast that the business will report earnings of $8.66 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $8.45 to $8.87. Zacks’ EPS calculations are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that follow Hershey.

Hershey (NYSE:HSYGet Rating) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, April 28th. The company reported $2.53 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.10 by $0.43. The firm had revenue of $2.67 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $2.49 billion. Hershey had a net margin of 17.29% and a return on equity of 61.65%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 16.1% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.92 earnings per share.

HSY has been the topic of several research analyst reports. Argus raised shares of Hershey from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $224.00 price objective on the stock in a research report on Monday, February 7th. Morgan Stanley increased their price objective on shares of Hershey from $191.00 to $207.00 and gave the company an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Friday, February 4th. Credit Suisse Group increased their price objective on shares of Hershey from $214.00 to $227.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, February 4th. Evercore ISI increased their price objective on shares of Hershey from $200.00 to $215.00 and gave the company an “outperform” rating in a research report on Friday, February 4th. Finally, Mizuho increased their price objective on shares of Hershey from $200.00 to $210.00 in a research report on Friday, April 29th. Seven analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and nine have given a buy rating to the company’s stock. According to MarketBeat, Hershey presently has an average rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $218.40.

In related news, Director Pamela M. Arway sold 255 shares of Hershey stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, April 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $221.95, for a total transaction of $56,597.25. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 15,690 shares in the company, valued at approximately $3,482,395.50. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, CEO Michele Buck sold 5,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, April 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $221.95, for a total transaction of $1,109,750.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief executive officer now owns 195,555 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $43,403,432.25. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last 90 days, insiders sold 12,785 shares of company stock worth $2,814,591. 0.34% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the business. Vanguard Group Inc. increased its position in shares of Hershey by 1.6% during the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 14,057,990 shares of the company’s stock worth $3,045,383,000 after buying an additional 216,715 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. grew its position in shares of Hershey by 0.9% during the 1st quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 13,432,299 shares of the company’s stock worth $2,909,840,000 after buying an additional 113,504 shares during the period. State Street Corp increased its stake in shares of Hershey by 1.3% in the 4th quarter. State Street Corp now owns 7,315,013 shares of the company’s stock valued at $1,415,236,000 after acquiring an additional 92,673 shares in the last quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC increased its position in Hershey by 2.3% in the 3rd quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 3,265,166 shares of the company’s stock valued at $552,629,000 after buying an additional 72,700 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Geode Capital Management LLC grew its stake in Hershey by 2.1% in the fourth quarter. Geode Capital Management LLC now owns 2,992,510 shares of the company’s stock valued at $577,810,000 after acquiring an additional 62,489 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 52.96% of the company’s stock.

Shares of HSY stock opened at $206.98 on Monday. The stock has a market cap of $314.51 billion, a P/E ratio of 26.60, a P/E/G ratio of 3.32 and a beta of 0.35. The company has a fifty day moving average price of $219.17 and a two-hundred day moving average price of $202.26. Hershey has a one year low of $167.80 and a one year high of $231.60. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.40, a current ratio of 0.96 and a quick ratio of 0.56.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, June 15th. Stockholders of record on Friday, May 20th will be paid a $0.901 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Thursday, May 19th. This represents a $3.60 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.74%. Hershey’s payout ratio is currently 46.27%.

About Hershey (Get Rating)

The Hershey Company, together with its subsidiaries, engages in the manufacture and sale of confectionery products and pantry items in the United States and internationally. The company operates through three segments: North America Confectionery, North America Salty Snacks, and International. It offers chocolate and non-chocolate confectionery products; gum and mint refreshment products, including mints, chewing gums, and bubble gums; pantry items, such as baking ingredients, toppings, beverages, and sundae syrups; and snack items comprising spreads, meat snacks, bars and snack bites, mixes, popcorn, and protein bars.

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