Darden Restaurants, Inc. (DRI) Receives Average Recommendation of “Buy” from Analysts

Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) has received a consensus recommendation of “Buy” from the thirty analysts that are presently covering the company, Marketbeat Ratings reports. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eight have assigned a hold rating and twenty have issued a buy rating on the company. The average 1-year price target among brokers that have updated their coverage on the stock in the last year is $121.35.

Several equities analysts recently weighed in on DRI shares. Barclays reduced their target price on Darden Restaurants from $133.00 to $129.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a research report on Thursday, November 29th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Darden Restaurants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $125.00 target price on the stock in a research report on Monday, November 19th. Wells Fargo & Co increased their target price on Darden Restaurants from $108.00 to $109.00 and gave the stock a “market perform” rating in a research report on Thursday, December 6th. Maxim Group reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $122.00 target price on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Wednesday, January 16th. Finally, Buckingham Research started coverage on Darden Restaurants in a research report on Friday, January 11th. They set a “buy” rating on the stock.

In other Darden Restaurants news, Director William S. Simon sold 1,565 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Friday, February 1st. The stock was sold at an average price of $104.90, for a total value of $164,168.50. Following the transaction, the director now owns 10,248 shares in the company, valued at $1,075,015.20. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Insiders own 0.65% of the company’s stock.

Several large investors have recently made changes to their positions in DRI. DNB Asset Management AS lifted its position in shares of Darden Restaurants by 4.4% in the third quarter. DNB Asset Management AS now owns 14,233 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $1,583,000 after buying an additional 600 shares during the last quarter. Iberiabank Corp acquired a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants during the 3rd quarter worth about $216,000. Bank of Montreal Can lifted its position in shares of Darden Restaurants by 33.5% during the 3rd quarter. Bank of Montreal Can now owns 445,093 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $49,489,000 after purchasing an additional 111,587 shares during the last quarter. Cookson Peirce & Co. Inc. acquired a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants during the 3rd quarter worth about $22,353,000. Finally, First Hawaiian Bank acquired a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants during the 3rd quarter worth about $740,000. 93.49% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Shares of DRI traded up $0.22 during trading hours on Tuesday, reaching $112.12. 705,143 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,213,351. The company has a quick ratio of 0.25, a current ratio of 0.41 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.41. The firm has a market cap of $13.85 billion, a P/E ratio of 23.31, a PEG ratio of 1.96 and a beta of 0.29. Darden Restaurants has a fifty-two week low of $82.38 and a fifty-two week high of $124.00.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, December 18th. The restaurant operator reported $0.92 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.91 by $0.01. The business had revenue of $1.97 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.98 billion. Darden Restaurants had a return on equity of 30.48% and a net margin of 8.12%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company earned $0.73 earnings per share. As a group, equities analysts expect that Darden Restaurants will post 5.69 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, February 1st. Stockholders of record on Thursday, January 10th were issued a dividend of $0.75 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Wednesday, January 9th. This represents a $3.00 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.68%. Darden Restaurants’s dividend payout ratio is 13.10%.

Darden Restaurants Company Profile

Darden Restaurants, Inc, through its subsidiaries, owns and operates full-service restaurants in the United States and Canada. As of May 27, 2018, it owned and operated approximately 1,746 restaurants under the Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen, Yard House, The Capital Grille, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52, and Eddie V's brands.

Featured Story: Stock Symbol

Analyst Recommendations for Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI)

Receive News & Ratings for Darden Restaurants Daily - Enter your email address below to receive a concise daily summary of the latest news and analysts' ratings for Darden Restaurants and related companies with MarketBeat.com's FREE daily email newsletter.