Shares of Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC) have earned a consensus recommendation of “Hold” from the seventeen ratings firms that are presently covering the company, MarketBeat reports. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell recommendation, ten have assigned a hold recommendation and four have assigned a buy recommendation to the company. The average 12-month target price among analysts that have issued a report on the stock in the last year is $27.58.

A number of equities analysts have recently weighed in on SONC shares. Bank of America Corporation reaffirmed an “underperform” rating and issued a $28.00 price objective (down previously from $30.00) on shares of Sonic Corp. in a research note on Sunday, June 25th. Stephens reaffirmed an “overweight” rating and issued a $32.00 price objective on shares of Sonic Corp. in a research note on Monday, June 26th. Zacks Investment Research lowered Sonic Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Thursday, May 11th. Wells Fargo & Company started coverage on Sonic Corp. in a research note on Tuesday, May 23rd. They issued a “market perform” rating and a $30.00 price objective for the company. Finally, BidaskClub lowered Sonic Corp. from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note on Saturday, June 17th.

Shares of Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ SONC) traded down 0.59% on Friday, reaching $23.77. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 301,179 shares. The stock has a 50-day moving average of $24.79 and a 200 day moving average of $26.05. Sonic Corp. has a 52-week low of $21.12 and a 52-week high of $30.05. The company has a market cap of $993.80 million, a price-to-earnings ratio of 15.85 and a beta of 1.74.

Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 22nd. The restaurant operator reported $0.43 earnings per share for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.41 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $124 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $122.58 million. Sonic Corp. had a negative return on equity of 44.21% and a net margin of 13.23%. The business’s quarterly revenue was down 24.9% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $0.43 earnings per share. On average, equities research analysts forecast that Sonic Corp. will post $1.24 earnings per share for the current year.

Sonic Corp. announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a share repurchase plan on Wednesday, August 9th that authorizes the company to buyback $160.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the restaurant operator to purchase up to 16.2% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are usually an indication that the company’s board of directors believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, August 18th. Investors of record on Wednesday, August 9th will be given a $0.14 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Monday, August 7th. This represents a $0.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 2.36%. Sonic Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 37.33%.

In related news, Director Steven A. Davis acquired 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction on Friday, July 21st. The shares were acquired at an average cost of $24.62 per share, for a total transaction of $49,240.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through the SEC website. Corporate insiders own 6.24% of the company’s stock.

A number of large investors have recently modified their holdings of SONC. Riverhead Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. by 77.7% in the second quarter. Riverhead Capital Management LLC now owns 4,797 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $127,000 after buying an additional 2,097 shares during the period. Flinton Capital Management LLC increased its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. by 74.5% in the second quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 6,290 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $167,000 after buying an additional 2,686 shares during the period. Karp Capital Management Corp bought a new stake in shares of Sonic Corp. during the first quarter worth about $209,000. LSV Asset Management bought a new stake in shares of Sonic Corp. during the first quarter worth about $218,000. Finally, State of Alaska Department of Revenue increased its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. by 72.7% in the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 8,378 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $221,000 after buying an additional 3,528 shares during the period. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 97.48% of the company’s stock.

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Sonic Corp. Company Profile

Sonic Corp. operates and franchises the chain of drive-thru restaurants (Sonic Drive-Ins) in the United States. As of August 31, 2016, 3,557 Sonic Drive-Ins were in operation from coast to coast in 45 states, consisting of 345 Company drive-thrus and 3,212 franchise drive-thrus. As of August 31, 2016, its restaurant design and construction consisted of a kitchen housed in a one-story building, which was approximately 1,500 square feet, flanked by canopy-covered rows of 16 to 24 parking spaces, with each space having its own payment terminal, intercom speaker system and menu board.

Analyst Recommendations for Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC)

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