Darden Restaurants Inc. (NYSE:DRI) had its target price trimmed by SunTrust Banks Inc. from $70.00 to $67.00 in a research note published on Wednesday morning. The firm currently has a neutral rating on the restaurant operator’s stock.

DRI has been the subject of several other reports. RBC Capital Markets reissued a sector perform rating and issued a $70.00 price objective on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Friday, September 30th. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Darden Restaurants from a sell rating to a hold rating in a research note on Monday, September 12th. Jefferies Group restated a hold rating and issued a $64.00 target price (down from $66.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note on Saturday, July 2nd. Piper Jaffray Cos. restated an overweight rating and issued a $76.00 target price on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note on Thursday, August 25th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Co. restated a market perform rating and issued a $68.00 target price on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note on Wednesday, September 28th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have assigned a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $69.89.

Analyst Recommendations for Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI)

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) traded down 0.463% during mid-day trading on Wednesday, reaching $61.275. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 600,155 shares. The company has a market cap of $7.73 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 21.144 and a beta of 0.41. Darden Restaurants has a 52-week low of $53.38 and a 52-week high of $68.68. The firm has a 50 day moving average price of $61.96 and a 200 day moving average price of $63.83.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, October 4th. The restaurant operator reported $0.88 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.82 by $0.06. Darden Restaurants had a return on equity of 24.97% and a net margin of 5.73%. The firm earned $1.71 billion during the quarter. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.68 earnings per share. The business’s revenue was up 1.6% on a year-over-year basis. Equities research analysts anticipate that Darden Restaurants will post $3.87 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, October 10th will be issued a dividend of $0.56 per share. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, October 5th. This represents a $2.24 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 3.64%. Darden Restaurants’s payout ratio is 72.03%.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Schroder Investment Management Group raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 291.5% in the second quarter. Schroder Investment Management Group now owns 1,725,904 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $109,319,000 after buying an additional 1,285,004 shares during the period. WBI Investments Inc. purchased a new position in Darden Restaurants during the second quarter worth approximately $57,165,000. Numeric Investors LLC raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 228.9% in the second quarter. Numeric Investors LLC now owns 1,272,100 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $80,575,000 after buying an additional 885,300 shares during the period. Bank of Montreal Can purchased a new position in Darden Restaurants during the second quarter worth approximately $53,974,000. Finally, 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 worth $802,903,000 after buying an additional 640,845 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 94.57% of the company’s stock.

About Darden Restaurants

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).

5 Day Chart for NYSE:DRI

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