BMO Capital Markets Analysts Give Darden Restaurants, Inc. (DRI) a $80.00 Price Target

BMO Capital Markets set a $80.00 target price on Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) in a research note issued to investors on Thursday morning. The brokerage currently has a hold rating on the restaurant operator’s stock.

Several other research firms have also recently weighed in on DRI. J P Morgan Chase & Co reissued a neutral rating and set a $93.00 price objective (up from $82.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Wednesday, June 28th. Credit Suisse Group decreased their price objective on shares of Darden Restaurants from $85.00 to $82.00 and set a neutral rating for the company in a report on Wednesday, September 27th. Stifel Nicolaus initiated coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Monday, October 2nd. They set a buy rating and a $92.00 price objective for the company. Morgan Stanley reissued an equal weight rating and set a $86.00 price objective (up from $83.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Thursday, June 22nd. Finally, Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. restated an outperform rating and set a $100.00 target price (up from $85.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Wednesday, June 28th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, sixteen have given a hold rating and nine have issued a buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has an average rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $87.59.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) opened at 82.77 on Thursday. Darden Restaurants has a 52-week low of $60.97 and a 52-week high of $95.22. The stock’s 50 day moving average is $80.82 and its 200-day moving average is $85.25. The company has a market capitalization of $10.24 billion, a P/E ratio of 21.43 and a beta of 0.24.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last released its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, September 26th. The restaurant operator reported $0.99 earnings per share for the quarter, meeting the consensus estimate of $0.99. Darden Restaurants had a net margin of 6.60% and a return on equity of 26.06%. The firm had revenue of $1.94 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $1.93 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the company earned $0.88 earnings per share. The firm’s quarterly revenue was up 12.9% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts predict that Darden Restaurants will post $4.44 EPS for the current fiscal year.

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The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, November 1st. Investors of record on Tuesday, October 10th will be given a dividend of $0.63 per share. The ex-dividend date is Friday, October 6th. This represents a $2.52 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 3.04%. Darden Restaurants’s dividend payout ratio is 65.12%.

Large investors have recently modified their holdings of the stock. M&R Capital Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants during the second quarter worth $108,000. D.A. Davidson & CO. boosted its position in shares of Darden Restaurants by 1.7% during the second quarter. D.A. Davidson & CO. now owns 1,271 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $114,000 after acquiring an additional 21 shares during the last quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. boosted its position in shares of Darden Restaurants by 255.5% during the second quarter. Farmers & Merchants Investments Inc. now owns 1,422 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $129,000 after acquiring an additional 1,022 shares during the last quarter. Huntington National Bank boosted its position in shares of Darden Restaurants by 4.6% during the second quarter. Huntington National Bank now owns 1,578 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $143,000 after acquiring an additional 70 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Ledyard National Bank boosted its position in shares of Darden Restaurants by 4.9% during the second quarter. Ledyard National Bank now owns 1,718 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $155,000 after acquiring an additional 80 shares during the last quarter. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 89.56% 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).

Analyst Recommendations for Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI)

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