No. 4: Hershey
Q4 Return: 1%
Total Return: 20%
Investor: Jon Markman
Sweet stock Hershey (NYSE:HSY) held onto its bronze-medal spot through Q3 largely because of a stellar climb just before the halfway mark. Unfortunately, the third-place honor slipped away after the stock barely was in the black for Q4.
Still, this fourth-place finisher is the first one of the group to best the total returns of the S&P 500, thanks in part to its solid 2.3% dividend. The company boasts over 300 straight payouts to investors and has raised its dividend over 180% since 2000.
That kind of consistency could still make it a great long-term buy. Of course, we were just looking for a one-year buy, and in 2012, the Kit-Kat and Kisses maker just wasn’t sweet enough.