Hershey (NYSE:HSY) Stock Rating Lowered by Piper Jaffray Companies

Hershey (NYSE:HSY) was downgraded by Piper Jaffray Companies from a “neutral” rating to an “underweight” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Wednesday, Marketbeat.com reports. They presently have a $125.00 price objective on the stock, up from their prior price objective of $122.00. Piper Jaffray Companies’ price target indicates a potential downside of 9.18% from the company’s previous close.

HSY has been the topic of a number of other reports. Zacks Investment Research raised Hershey from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $139.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Wednesday, May 8th. Barclays upped their target price on Hershey from $103.00 to $120.00 and gave the stock an “equal weight” rating in a research report on Friday, April 26th. Bank of America reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $130.00 target price (up from $120.00) on shares of Hershey in a research report on Friday, April 26th. Evercore ISI began coverage on Hershey in a research report on Tuesday, June 11th. They set an “in-line” rating and a $145.00 target price on the stock. Finally, BMO Capital Markets upped their target price on Hershey from $93.00 to $108.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Friday, April 26th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and three have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $120.00.

Hershey stock opened at $137.64 on Wednesday. The company has a market cap of $28.79 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.68, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 3.02 and a beta of 0.11. Hershey has a 52-week low of $90.52 and a 52-week high of $139.34. The company has a current ratio of 0.92, a quick ratio of 0.59 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 2.27.



Hershey (NYSE:HSY) last issued its earnings results on Thursday, April 25th. The company reported $1.59 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.48 by $0.11. Hershey had a return on equity of 90.64% and a net margin of 14.44%. The company had revenue of $2.02 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2 billion. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $1.41 earnings per share. Hershey’s revenue for the quarter was up 2.3% on a year-over-year basis. As a group, sell-side analysts forecast that Hershey will post 5.7 EPS for the current year.

In related news, insider Todd W. Tillemans purchased 2,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, May 30th. The stock was acquired at an average cost of $129.92 per share, with a total value of $259,840.00. Following the transaction, the insider now owns 15,773 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,049,228.16. The purchase was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, CEO Michele Buck sold 1,500 shares of the stock in a transaction on Monday, June 10th. The shares were sold at an average price of $138.01, for a total value of $207,015.00. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now directly owns 159,929 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $22,071,801.29. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders purchased 3,100 shares of company stock valued at $401,990 and sold 3,696,695 shares valued at $466,645,084. Corporate insiders own 0.41% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Raymond James & Associates raised its position in Hershey by 26.1% in the 4th quarter. Raymond James & Associates now owns 56,621 shares of the company’s stock valued at $6,069,000 after buying an additional 11,702 shares during the last quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC raised its position in Hershey by 453.3% in the 4th quarter. Gotham Asset Management LLC now owns 92,780 shares of the company’s stock valued at $9,944,000 after buying an additional 76,011 shares during the last quarter. Captrust Financial Advisors raised its position in Hershey by 126.1% in the 4th quarter. Captrust Financial Advisors now owns 848 shares of the company’s stock valued at $91,000 after buying an additional 473 shares during the last quarter. Keybank National Association OH raised its position in Hershey by 9.9% in the 1st quarter. Keybank National Association OH now owns 21,577 shares of the company’s stock valued at $2,478,000 after buying an additional 1,952 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its position in Hershey by 5.5% in the 4th quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 156,085 shares of the company’s stock valued at $16,729,000 after buying an additional 8,098 shares during the last quarter. 53.56% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

About Hershey

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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Analyst Recommendations for Hershey (NYSE:HSY)

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