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Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) was downgraded by equities researchers at Bank of America to an “underperform” rating in a research report issued on Thursday.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) traded down 0.02% on Thursday, hitting $47.44. 393,447 shares of the company’s stock traded hands. Darden Restaurants has a 1-year low of $43.56 and a 1-year high of $54.89. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $46.05 and a 200-day moving average of $48.5. The company has a market cap of $6.277 billion and a price-to-earnings ratio of 22.04. Darden Restaurants also was the target of a significant increase in short interest during the month of August. As of August 15th, there was short interest totalling 15,232,792 shares, an increase of 27.8% from the July 31st total of 11,916,846 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 1,862,569 shares, the short-interest ratio is currently 8.2 days. Approximately 11.6% of the shares of the company are short sold.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Friday, June 20th. The company reported $0.65 EPS for the quarter, missing the Thomson Reuters consensus estimate of $0.94 by $0.29. The company had revenue of $2.32 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $2.33 billion. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $1.01 earnings per share. The company’s quarterly revenue was up .9% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts expect that Darden Restaurants will post $2.23 EPS for the current fiscal year.

A number of other firms have also recently commented on DRI. Analysts at Goldman Sachs initiated coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note on Monday, August 11th. They set a $500.00 price target on the stock. Separately, analysts at Deutsche Bank cut their price target on shares of Darden Restaurants from $49.00 to $44.00 in a research note on Tuesday, July 29th. They now have a “hold” rating on the stock. Finally, analysts at Raymond James cut their price target on shares of Darden Restaurants from $55.00 to $50.00 in a research note on Monday, July 14th. Two analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eleven have issued a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the stock. The company presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $76.71.

Darden Restaurants, Inc is full service restaurant company. The Company owns and operates more than 1,500 restaurants.

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