Today: Darden Restaurants Inc. (DRI) Rating Decreased to Hold at Maxim Group

Today: Darden Restaurants Inc. (DRI) Rating Decreased to Hold at Maxim Group

Darden Restaurants Inc. (NYSE:DRI) was downgraded by equities researchers at Maxim Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a note issued to investors on Monday. They presently have a $74.00 price target on the restaurant operator’s stock. Maxim Group’s price objective would suggest a potential downside of 1.27% from the company’s current price.

Other equities research analysts have also recently issued reports about the company. Zacks Investment Research cut Darden Restaurants from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research note on Friday. Canaccord Genuity initiated coverage on Darden Restaurants in a report on Monday, August 22nd. They set a “buy” rating and a $74.00 target price on the stock. SunTrust Banks Inc. reduced their target price on Darden Restaurants from $70.00 to $67.00 and set a “neutral” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday, October 5th. Robert W. Baird reiterated a “neutral” rating on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Thursday, September 8th. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reduced their target price on Darden Restaurants from $53.00 to $50.00 and set a “sell” rating on the stock in a report on Monday, October 3rd. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, fourteen have assigned a hold rating and ten have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $70.63.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) opened at 74.95 on Monday. The firm has a market cap of $9.22 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 24.20 and a beta of 0.23. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $66.24 and its 200-day moving average price is $64.18. Darden Restaurants has a one year low of $55.01 and a one year high of $74.99.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last announced its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 4th. The restaurant operator reported $0.88 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.82 by $0.06. Darden Restaurants had a return on equity of 24.97% and a net margin of 5.73%. The business earned $1.71 billion during the quarter. During the same period last year, the firm earned $0.68 earnings per share. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.6% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts forecast that Darden Restaurants will post $3.93 earnings per share for the current year.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Investors of record on Monday, October 10th were paid a $0.56 dividend. This represents a $2.24 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 2.99%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, October 5th. Darden Restaurants’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 72.03%.

In other Darden Restaurants news, SVP Danielle L. Kirgan sold 28,127 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.47, for a total transaction 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 can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, SVP Danielle L. Kirgan sold 8,780 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 11th. The stock was sold at an average price of $62.47, for a total value of $548,486.60. Following 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. 0.69% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.

Large investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Renaissance Technologies LLC boosted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 80.8% in the first quarter. Renaissance Technologies LLC now owns 175,900 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $11,662,000 after buying an additional 78,600 shares during the last quarter. First Republic Investment Management Inc. boosted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 118.6% in the first quarter. First Republic Investment Management Inc. now owns 9,985 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $663,000 after buying an additional 5,417 shares during the last quarter. First Financial Bank N.A. Trust Division boosted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 5.3% in the second quarter. First Financial Bank N.A. Trust Division now owns 50,800 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $3,218,000 after buying an additional 2,567 shares during the last quarter. New England Research & Management Inc. acquired a new stake in Darden Restaurants during the second quarter valued at $570,000. Finally, British Columbia Investment Management Corp boosted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 5.8% in the second quarter. British Columbia Investment Management Corp now owns 111,649 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $7,072,000 after buying an additional 6,128 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 88.85% of the company’s stock.

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