Here's What Pushed Hasbro, Inc. Stock Higher in 2016

By Seth McNew Markets Fool.com

What happened

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Shares ofHasbro, Inc.(NASDAQ: HAS) rose more than 16% throughout 2016, according to data fromS&P Global Market Intelligence, after the company posted impressive results throughout the year, particularly within its girls segment.

So what

For the third quarter reported Oct. 17, Hasbro's sales gained 14% year over year, to $1.68 billion. Net earnings increased by 24%. Much of the success in the third quarter and throughout the year was due to the continued growth of the boys segment, which grew 8% year over year for the first three quarters of 2016, and, more impressively, from growth in the girls segment, which jumped 48% during the same period.

Image source: Hasbro Inc.

The results are far above those of rivalMattel(NASDAQ: MAT), which has recently disappointed, seemingly in large part because it lost its Disneylicensing agreement to Hasbro in 2014. Mattel's share price ended flat for 2016.

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Now what

Hasbro shares were up more than 30% in 2016 before a sell-off in December, but that stock has risen since the start of 2017, including a 14% jump on Feb. 6 to a new high after a strong fourth-quarter and 2016 earnings report. Even though it could face more headwinds in 2017, particularly with tough comparisons over a successful 2016,the company has a lot to offer long-term bulls.

The deal between Hasbro and Disney could continue to be lucrative by riding on the latter's own franchise success, and Hasbro also has a growing gaming segment with an increasing focus on digital games. Additionally, HasbroCEO Brian Goldner, who has proven to be a shrewd operator, just signed on to stay for another three years, through 2020.

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Seth McNew owns shares of Hasbro and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Hasbro and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.