Ruth’s Hospitality Group Inc. (NASDAQ:RUTH) COO Kevin W. Toomy sold 40,971 shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 11th. The shares were sold at an average price of $16.54, for a total value of $677,660.34. Following the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 170,373 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,817,969.42. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link.

Shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group Inc. (NASDAQ:RUTH) opened at 16.45 on Wednesday. The stock has a market capitalization of $504.01 million, a PE ratio of 17.65 and a beta of 0.62. Ruth’s Hospitality Group Inc. has a 52-week low of $13.74 and a 52-week high of $18.78. The stock has a 50 day moving average price of $14.91 and a 200-day moving average price of $15.65.

Ruth’s Hospitality Group (NASDAQ:RUTH) last announced its earnings results on Friday, October 28th. The company reported $0.10 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.09 by $0.01. The firm earned $83.77 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $83.49 million. Ruth’s Hospitality Group had a return on equity of 34.67% and a net margin of 8.03%. The business’s revenue was up 4.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the prior year, the firm earned $0.08 EPS. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Ruth’s Hospitality Group Inc. will post $0.95 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, November 23rd. Investors of record on Thursday, November 10th will be given a $0.07 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Tuesday, November 8th. This represents a $0.28 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.70%. Ruth’s Hospitality Group’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 30.11%.

Several research analysts recently weighed in on the company. Zacks Investment Research upgraded Ruth’s Hospitality Group from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $18.00 price target for the company in a research report on Wednesday, November 2nd. Raymond James Financial Inc. upgraded Ruth’s Hospitality Group from a “market perform” rating to an “outperform” rating and set a $17.00 price target for the company in a research report on Tuesday, October 18th. Deutsche Bank AG reiterated a “buy” rating on shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group in a research report on Wednesday, August 10th. Finally, Jefferies Group cut Ruth’s Hospitality Group from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating and set a $17.00 price target for the company. in a research report on Tuesday, July 26th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and three have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. Ruth’s Hospitality Group currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and a consensus price target of $17.75.

Hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its stake in shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group by 12.9% in the second quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 2,191,416 shares of the company’s stock worth $34,953,000 after buying an additional 249,717 shares during the period. BlackRock Fund Advisors boosted its stake in shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group by 1.1% in the third quarter. BlackRock Fund Advisors now owns 2,175,128 shares of the company’s stock worth $30,713,000 after buying an additional 23,638 shares during the period. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP boosted its stake in shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group by 0.6% in the second quarter. Dimensional Fund Advisors LP now owns 1,347,485 shares of the company’s stock worth $21,493,000 after buying an additional 7,825 shares during the period. State Street Corp boosted its stake in shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group by 1.9% in the second quarter. State Street Corp now owns 803,311 shares of the company’s stock worth $12,816,000 after buying an additional 14,675 shares during the period. Finally, BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. boosted its stake in shares of Ruth’s Hospitality Group by 4.0% in the third quarter. BlackRock Institutional Trust Company N.A. now owns 780,118 shares of the company’s stock worth $11,015,000 after buying an additional 30,186 shares during the period. 80.84% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Ruth’s Hospitality Group

Ruth’s Hospitality Group, Inc develops and operates fine dining restaurants under the name, Ruth’s Chris Steak House. The Company operates through two segments: the Company-owned steakhouse restaurant segment and the franchise operations segment. The Company’s Ruth’s Chris restaurants cater to special occasion diners and frequent customers, in addition to the business clientele.

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