RBC Capital Markets restated their sector perform rating on shares of Darden Restaurants Inc. (NYSE:DRI) in a report released on Wednesday morning. They currently have a $70.00 target price on the restaurant operator’s stock.
DRI has been the subject of a number of other reports. Jefferies Group reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $64.00 price objective (down from $66.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Saturday, July 2nd. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Darden Restaurants from a hold rating to a sell rating in a report on Tuesday, July 26th. BMO Capital Markets reaffirmed a hold rating and set a $64.00 price objective on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Thursday, September 1st. Piper Jaffray Cos. reaffirmed an overweight rating and set a $76.00 price objective on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Thursday, August 25th. Finally, BTIG Research reaffirmed a buy rating and set a $75.00 price objective on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Friday, July 1st. Three analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and twelve have issued a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $69.89.
Shares of Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) opened at 62.80 on Wednesday. The stock has a 50 day moving average of $61.94 and a 200-day moving average of $63.68. The company has a market capitalization of $7.73 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 20.28 and a beta of 0.41. Darden Restaurants has a one year low of $53.38 and a one year high of $68.68.
Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 4th. The restaurant operator reported $0.88 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.82 by $0.06. Darden Restaurants had a net margin of 5.73% and a return on equity of 24.97%. The business earned $1.71 billion during the quarter. During the same period last year, the business earned $0.68 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up 1.6% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities analysts expect that Darden Restaurants will post $3.92 earnings per share for the current year.
The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Investors of record on Monday, October 10th will be issued a $0.56 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, October 5th. This represents a $2.24 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.57%. Darden Restaurants’s payout ratio is currently 72.03%.
In related news, SVP Danielle L. Kirgan sold 28,127 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.47, for a total value of $1,757,093.69. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 15,989 shares in the company, valued at $998,832.83. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, SVP Danielle L. Kirgan sold 8,780 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, October 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $62.47, for a total value of $548,486.60. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 15,989 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $998,832.83. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.68% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 5.3% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 12,676,075 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $802,903,000 after buying an additional 640,845 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 0.6% in the first quarter. State Street Corp now owns 5,228,348 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $346,649,000 after buying an additional 32,258 shares during the period. BlackRock Fund Advisors raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 12.2% in the second quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 4,646,824 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $294,330,000 after buying an additional 505,377 shares during the period. Bank of New York Mellon Corp raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 8.6% in the second quarter. Bank of New York Mellon Corp now owns 3,902,816 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $247,202,000 after buying an additional 308,834 shares during the period. Finally, Ameriprise Financial Inc. raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 16.3% in the second quarter. Ameriprise Financial Inc. now owns 3,893,719 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $246,621,000 after buying an additional 544,413 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 94.57% of the company’s stock.
Darden Restaurants Company Profile
Darden Restaurants, Inc is a full-service restaurant company. The Company owned and operated 1,536 restaurants through its subsidiaries in the United States and Canada, as of May 29, 2016. The Company’s segments include Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Fine Dining (which includes The Capital Grille, and Eddie V’s Prime Seafood and Wildfish Seafood Grille (Eddie V’s)) and Other Business (which includes Yard House, Seasons 52, Bahama Breeze, consumer-packaged goods and franchise revenues).
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