As of December 31, 1997, Hershey Foods Corporation had outstanding 112,466,398 shares of Common Stock and 30,465,908 shares of Class B Common Stock.
Stock Market Data
Hershey Foods Corporation's Common Stock is listed and traded principally on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol 'HSY.' Class B Common Stock is not listed for trading. The stock tables of most financial publications list the corporation as 'Hershey.' Options on the corporation's Common Stock are traded on the American Stock Exchange.
Common Stock Profile
Dividends on Hershey Foods Corporation's Common Stock and Class B Common Stock are declared by the Board of Directors and normally are paid in the months of March, June, September and December.
Dividend Reinvestment Service
The dividend paid on the Common Stock on March 13, 1998, was the 273rd consecutive quarterly dividend paid by the corporation. The dividend rate has been increased annually for 23 consecutive years. Historically, the corporation has targeted approximately one-third of income from continuing operations as dividends to stockholders.
The corporation offers an Automatic Dividend Reinvestment Service to registered holders of Hershey Foods Common Stock. This service provides a convenient method of increasing share ownership without paying brokerage commissions or service fees. The corporation pays all commissions and fees associated with stock purchases made with reinvested dividends. However, under Internal Revenue Service regulations, any fees paid on behalf of stockholders are considered taxable income and will be included on their Form 1099-DIV Statement of Dividends and Distributions. Participants also may make voluntary cash payments of up to $20,000 annually, for which there are only nominal brokerage commissions and service fees. Approximately one-half of Hershey Foods Corporation's registered stockholders are enrolled in this automatic Dividend Reinvestment Service. For more information, contact:
ChaseMellon Shareholder Services
Safe Harbor Statement
The nature of the corporation's operations and the environment in which it operates subject it to changing economic, competitive, regulatory and technological conditions, risks and uncertainties. In connection with the 'safe harbor' provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, the corporation notes the following factors which, among others, could cause future results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements, expectations and assumptions expressed or implied herein. Factors which could cause results to differ include, but are not limited to: changes in the confectionery and pasta business environment, including actions of competitors and changes in consumer preferences; changes in governmental laws and regulations, including income taxes; market demand for new and existing products; and raw material pricing.
Questions relating to stockholder records, change of ownership, change of address and dividend payments should be sent to the corporation's Transfer Agent, ChaseMellon Shareholder Services, http://www.chasemellon.com.
Security analysts, investment managers and stockholders should direct financial information inquiries to the Investor Relations contact, James A. Edris, firstname.lastname@example.org.
1997 Summary Annual Report
To control costs and to better meet our stockholders' needs, we have published a 1997 Summary Annual Report. The Consolidated Financial Statements and Management's Discussion and Analysis are included as an appendix to the corporation's Proxy Statement or can be obtained separately through the Investor Relations contact, James A. Edris, email@example.com.