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Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) Director Cornelius Mcgillicudy III unloaded 3,000 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, January 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $51.92, for a total transaction of $155,760.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 25,579 shares in the company, valued at approximately $1,328,062. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link.

A number of research firms have recently commented on DRI. Analysts at Buckingham Research initiated coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note to investors on Friday. They set a “neutral” rating on the stock. Separately, analysts at UBS AG initiated coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note to investors on Wednesday. They set a “neutral” rating on the stock. Finally, analysts at Credit Suisse initiated coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note to investors on Tuesday. They set an “underperform” rating on the stock. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have given a hold rating and five have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock currently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $51.22.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) traded up 1.52% during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $52.12. 1,329,201 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Darden Restaurants has a one year low of $44.11 and a one year high of $55.25. The stock’s 50-day moving average is $52.75 and its 200-day moving average is $50.24. The company has a market cap of $6.841 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.94. Darden Restaurants also was the recipient of some unusual options trading activity on Tuesday. Stock investors acquired 45,645 call options on the stock. This is an increase of approximately 1,332% compared to the typical daily volume of 3,187 call options.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, December 19th. The company reported $0.15 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the analysts’ consensus estimate of $0.21 by $0.06. The company had revenue of $2.05 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.07 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $0.26 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 4.6% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts expect that Darden Restaurants will post $2.57 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which is scheduled for Monday, February 3rd. Shareholders of record on Friday, January 10th will be paid a dividend of 0.55 per share. This represents a $2.20 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 4.22%. The ex-dividend date is Wednesday, January 8th.

Darden Restaurants, Inc (NYSE:DRI) is a company owned and full-service restaurant company.

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