Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) Given New $170.00 Price Target at Wedbush

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRIGet Free Report) had its price objective dropped by Wedbush from $181.00 to $170.00 in a research note issued on Tuesday, Benzinga reports. The firm presently has an “outperform” rating on the restaurant operator’s stock. Wedbush’s target price would indicate a potential upside of 15.14% from the company’s previous close.

DRI has been the subject of several other reports. BTIG Research upgraded Darden Restaurants from a “neutral” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $175.00 target price for the company in a research note on Friday, May 17th. Stifel Nicolaus raised their target price on shares of Darden Restaurants from $185.00 to $190.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Tuesday, March 19th. TD Cowen restated a “buy” rating and issued a $190.00 price target on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note on Monday, April 22nd. Morgan Stanley dropped their price target on shares of Darden Restaurants from $184.00 to $180.00 and set an “overweight” rating on the stock in a research note on Friday, March 22nd. Finally, Stephens started coverage on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research note on Friday, April 12th. They issued an “equal weight” rating and a $170.00 price target on the stock. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and sixteen have given a buy rating to the stock. According to MarketBeat, the stock presently has a consensus rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus price target of $177.38.

Check Out Our Latest Research Report on Darden Restaurants

Darden Restaurants Price Performance

DRI stock opened at $147.64 on Tuesday. Darden Restaurants has a 1 year low of $133.36 and a 1 year high of $176.84. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.63, a quick ratio of 0.25 and a current ratio of 0.39. The stock’s 50 day moving average price is $152.03 and its 200 day moving average price is $160.10. The firm has a market cap of $17.62 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.31, a PEG ratio of 1.52 and a beta of 1.29.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRIGet Free Report) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, March 21st. The restaurant operator reported $2.62 earnings per share for the quarter, missing analysts’ consensus estimates of $2.63 by ($0.01). The business had revenue of $2.97 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $3.02 billion. Darden Restaurants had a return on equity of 49.94% and a net margin of 9.24%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 6.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the company earned $2.34 EPS. On average, sell-side analysts expect that Darden Restaurants will post 8.85 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Darden Restaurants declared that its board has approved a share repurchase program on Thursday, March 21st that permits the company to repurchase $1.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the restaurant operator to reacquire up to 5% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are generally a sign that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

Insider Buying and Selling

In related news, SVP Matthew R. Broad sold 4,707 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction on Thursday, April 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $156.15, for a total value of $734,998.05. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 19,179 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,994,800.85. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. In related news, SVP Matthew R. Broad sold 4,707 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction on Thursday, April 25th. The shares were sold at an average price of $156.15, for a total value of $734,998.05. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 19,179 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,994,800.85. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Melvin John Martin sold 7,673 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction on Wednesday, March 27th. The stock was sold at an average price of $165.52, for a total transaction of $1,270,034.96. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 17,208 shares in the company, valued at approximately $2,848,268.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last 90 days, insiders sold 13,599 shares of company stock valued at $2,197,891. Company insiders own 0.85% of the company’s stock.

Hedge Funds Weigh In On Darden Restaurants

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in DRI. Rise Advisors LLC boosted its position in Darden Restaurants by 131.3% in the first quarter. Rise Advisors LLC now owns 155 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $26,000 after buying an additional 88 shares in the last quarter. ESL Trust Services LLC acquired a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants during the first quarter worth approximately $27,000. Fortitude Family Office LLC acquired a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants during the fourth quarter worth approximately $29,000. Hartford Financial Management Inc. lifted its position in shares of Darden Restaurants by 65.1% during the fourth quarter. Hartford Financial Management Inc. now owns 180 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $30,000 after purchasing an additional 71 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners acquired a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants during the fourth quarter worth approximately $33,000. 93.64% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

Darden Restaurants Company Profile

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Darden Restaurants, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, owns and operates full-service restaurants in the United States and Canada. It operates under Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Cheddar's Scratch Kitchen, Yard House, The Capital Grille, Seasons 52, Bahama Breeze, Eddie V's Prime Seafood, and Capital Burger brand names.

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Analyst Recommendations for Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI)

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