Wall Street analysts forecast that Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) will report earnings of $1.35 per share for the current quarter, Zacks reports. Ten analysts have made estimates for Darden Restaurants’ earnings, with the lowest EPS estimate coming in at $1.33 and the highest estimate coming in at $1.41. Darden Restaurants posted earnings per share of $1.18 in the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year over year growth rate of 14.4%. The company is scheduled to report its next quarterly earnings report on Tuesday, June 26th.
According to Zacks, analysts expect that Darden Restaurants will report full-year earnings of $4.77 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $4.75 to $4.80. For the next financial year, analysts forecast that the company will report earnings of $5.38 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $5.15 to $5.75. Zacks’ EPS averages are a mean average based on a survey of sell-side research firms that cover Darden Restaurants.
Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, March 22nd. The restaurant operator reported $1.71 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.64 by $0.07. The firm had revenue of $2.13 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $2.15 billion. Darden Restaurants had a net margin of 6.92% and a return on equity of 28.12%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was up 13.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same period in the previous year, the business earned $1.32 EPS.
DRI has been the subject of a number of recent analyst reports. Maxim Group restated a “buy” rating and set a $103.00 price target (up from $93.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Wednesday, December 20th. Argus upgraded shares of Darden Restaurants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and boosted their price target for the company from $95.67 to $108.00 in a research report on Thursday, December 21st. Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Darden Restaurants from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $111.00 price target for the company in a research report on Monday, January 8th. Mizuho initiated coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Thursday, March 15th. They set a “buy” rating and a $105.00 price target for the company. Finally, Stifel Nicolaus reduced their price target on shares of Darden Restaurants from $105.00 to $100.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a research report on Friday, March 23rd. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, thirteen have issued a hold rating and fourteen have issued a buy rating to the company. Darden Restaurants currently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $98.43.
Shares of DRI traded up $0.34 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $89.76. 1,010,086 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 1,604,036. The firm has a market capitalization of $10,988.33, a P/E ratio of 22.33, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.71 and a beta of 0.23. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.44, a current ratio of 0.39 and a quick ratio of 0.25. Darden Restaurants has a 1 year low of $76.27 and a 1 year high of $100.11.
The firm also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, May 1st. Shareholders of record on Tuesday, April 10th will be paid a $0.63 dividend. This represents a $2.52 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.81%. The ex-dividend date is Monday, April 9th. Darden Restaurants’s dividend payout ratio is presently 62.69%.
A number of institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the business. Victory Capital Management Inc. lifted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 1,963.6% in the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 2,067,552 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $198,526,000 after purchasing an additional 1,967,362 shares during the last quarter. American Century Companies Inc. lifted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 29.2% in the fourth quarter. American Century Companies Inc. now owns 1,689,176 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $162,195,000 after purchasing an additional 381,677 shares during the last quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC lifted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 113.6% in the third quarter. Janus Henderson Group PLC now owns 1,576,026 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $124,158,000 after purchasing an additional 838,341 shares during the last quarter. Allianz Asset Management GmbH lifted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 3.3% in the fourth quarter. Allianz Asset Management GmbH now owns 746,574 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $71,686,000 after purchasing an additional 23,622 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Two Sigma Advisers LP lifted its stake in Darden Restaurants by 49.1% in the fourth quarter. Two Sigma Advisers LP now owns 741,637 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $71,212,000 after purchasing an additional 244,302 shares during the last quarter. 90.51% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
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About Darden Restaurants
Darden Restaurants, Inc, through its subsidiaries, owns and operates full-service restaurants in the United States and Canada. As of June 27, 2017, it owned and operated approximately 1,700 restaurants under the Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen, Yard House, The Capital Grille, Seasons 52, Bahama Breeze, and Eddie V's brands.
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