Darden Restaurants Inc. (NYSE:DRI)‘s stock had its “outperform” rating reissued by equities researchers at Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. in a research note issued on Friday. They presently have a $70.00 price objective on the restaurant operator’s stock. Oppenheimer Holdings Inc.’s price objective would suggest a potential upside of 13.58% from the company’s previous close.

Several other analysts have also weighed in on the stock. Wells Fargo & Co. lowered shares of Darden Restaurants from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and dropped their price objective for the stock from $72.00 to $68.00 in a report on Wednesday, July 13th. Stifel Nicolaus lowered shares of Darden Restaurants from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating and set a $53.00 price target for the company. in a report on Tuesday, July 26th. Piper Jaffray Cos. reissued an “overweight” rating and issued a $76.00 price target (down previously from $78.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Saturday, July 2nd. Canaccord Genuity initiated coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Monday, August 22nd. They issued a “buy” rating and a $74.00 price target for the company. Finally, Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Darden Restaurants from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Monday, September 12th. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and twelve have given a buy rating to the company. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $69.89.

Analyst Recommendations for Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI)

Shares of Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) traded up 1.12% during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $61.63. 1,607,093 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Darden Restaurants has a 52 week low of $53.38 and a 52 week high of $68.68. The company’s 50 day moving average is $61.89 and its 200-day moving average is $63.77. The firm has a market cap of $7.70 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.90 and a beta of 0.41.

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. The company earned $1.71 billion during the quarter. Darden Restaurants had a net margin of 5.73% and a return on equity of 24.97%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 1.6% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $0.68 EPS. Equities analysts expect that Darden Restaurants will post $3.92 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, November 1st. Stockholders of record on Monday, October 10th will be paid a dividend of $0.56 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Wednesday, October 5th. This represents a $2.24 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.63%. Darden Restaurants’s dividend payout ratio is presently 72.03%.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in DRI. Bruderman Asset Management LLC raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 0.4% in the second quarter. Bruderman Asset Management LLC now owns 3,387 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $215,000 after buying an additional 13 shares in the last quarter. Krilogy Financial LLC raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 1.6% in the second quarter. Krilogy Financial LLC now owns 2,133 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $135,000 after buying an additional 33 shares in the last quarter. Commonwealth Bank of Australia raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 0.3% in the second quarter. Commonwealth Bank of Australia now owns 14,931 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $947,000 after buying an additional 45 shares in the last quarter. HM Payson & Co. raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 0.3% in the second quarter. HM Payson & Co. now owns 18,984 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $1,202,000 after buying an additional 55 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Associated Banc Corp raised its position in Darden Restaurants by 1.2% in the second quarter. Associated Banc Corp now owns 6,072 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $385,000 after buying an additional 72 shares in the last quarter. 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).

5 Day Chart for NYSE:DRI

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