Darden Restaurants, Inc. (DRI) Insider Sells $8,528,387.50 in Stock

Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) insider Eugene I. Lee, Jr. sold 93,125 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, June 29th. The shares were sold at an average price of $91.58, for a total transaction of $8,528,387.50. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 165,062 shares in the company, valued at approximately $15,116,377.96. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink.

Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) opened at 83.85 on Friday. Darden Restaurants, Inc. has a 52 week low of $59.93 and a 52 week high of $95.22. The company has a market cap of $10.52 billion, a P/E ratio of 22.05 and a beta of 0.28. The company has a 50-day moving average of $89.57 and a 200 day moving average of $82.43.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) last announced its earnings results on Tuesday, June 27th. The restaurant operator reported $1.18 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the consensus estimate of $1.15 by $0.03. Darden Restaurants had a net margin of 6.68% and a return on equity of 26.18%. The business had revenue of $1.94 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $1.86 billion. During the same period in the previous year, the business posted $1.10 earnings per share. Darden Restaurants’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.1% on a year-over-year basis. On average, equities analysts forecast that Darden Restaurants, Inc. will post $4.47 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Tuesday, August 1st. Shareholders of record on Monday, July 10th will be given a dividend of $0.63 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, July 6th. This is a positive change from Darden Restaurants’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.56. This represents a $2.52 annualized dividend and a yield of 3.01%. Darden Restaurants’s payout ratio is presently 66.14%.

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A number of research analysts recently commented on DRI shares. Bank of America Corporation set a $80.00 price target on shares of Darden Restaurants and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Monday, June 26th. Oppenheimer Holdings, Inc. increased their target price on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Monday, June 26th. Canaccord Genuity restated a “buy” rating and set a $102.00 target price on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Friday, June 9th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Darden Restaurants from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Friday, June 23rd. Finally, Robert W. Baird restated a “neutral” rating and set a $90.00 target price (up previously from $85.00) on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Monday, June 19th. Two investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have assigned a hold rating and seven have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Darden Restaurants presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average price target of $84.78.

A number of large investors have recently made changes to their positions in DRI. Ronald Blue & Co. LLC raised its stake in shares of Darden Restaurants by 1.0% in the second quarter. Ronald Blue & Co. LLC now owns 3,106 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $281,000 after buying an additional 30 shares during the last quarter. Lee Financial Co raised its stake in shares of Darden Restaurants by 1.1% in the second quarter. Lee Financial Co now owns 16,045 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $1,451,000 after buying an additional 170 shares during the last quarter. Honkamp Krueger Financial Services Inc. raised its stake in shares of Darden Restaurants by 0.3% in the second quarter. Honkamp Krueger Financial Services Inc. now owns 2,788 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $252,000 after buying an additional 9 shares during the last quarter. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. raised its stake in shares of Darden Restaurants by 0.5% in the second quarter. Bbva Compass Bancshares Inc. now owns 16,677 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $1,509,000 after buying an additional 84 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Great West Life Assurance Co. Can raised its stake in shares of Darden Restaurants by 23.0% in the second quarter. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can now owns 146,310 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $13,217,000 after buying an additional 27,321 shares during the last quarter. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 96.62% of the company’s stock.

Darden Restaurants Company Profile

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).

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