Hershey, Monsanto raise quarterly dividends

by Eric Schroeder
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HERSHEY, PA. and ST. LOUIS — The board of directors of both The Hershey Co. and Monsanto Co. announced increases in their quarterly dividends.

Hershey declared a dividend of 29.75c on the common stock, an increase of 10.2%, or 2.75c per share. In addition, the board declared a dividend of 26.78c on the Class B common stock, an increase of 10.4%, or 2.53c per share. The dividends are payable Sept. 14 to shareholders of record as of Aug. 24.

"The company continues to generate steady free cash flow and has a strong balance sheet," said Richard H. Lenny, chairman, president and chief executive officer. "This dividend increase reflects our confidence in Hershey’s marketplace position and long-term growth potential."

The board of directors of Monsanto Co., meanwhile, declared an increase in the quarterly dividend on its common shares from 12.5c per share to 17.5c per share, or an increase of 40%. The dividend is payable on Oct. 26 to shareholders of record as of Oct. 5.

"This represents the largest increase of our quarterly dividend in Monsanto’s history as a company completely focused on agriculture, and it further reinforces our commitment to return value to our shareowners," said Terry Crews, executive vice-president and chief financial officer of Monsanto.

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