AdvisorShares Investments LLC Sells 200 Shares of Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI)

AdvisorShares Investments LLC lowered its position in Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRIFree Report) by 21.4% during the 4th quarter, according to the company in its most recent Form 13F filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 735 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock after selling 200 shares during the period. AdvisorShares Investments LLC’s holdings in Darden Restaurants were worth $121,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

Other institutional investors and hedge funds have also added to or reduced their stakes in the company. Fortitude Family Office LLC bought a new position in Darden Restaurants in the fourth quarter worth approximately $29,000. Hartford Financial Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Darden Restaurants by 65.1% in the fourth quarter. Hartford Financial Management Inc. now owns 180 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $30,000 after purchasing an additional 71 shares in the last quarter. Tennessee Valley Asset Management Partners bought a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $33,000. McGlone Suttner Wealth Management Inc. bought a new position in shares of Darden Restaurants in the fourth quarter valued at approximately $35,000. Finally, Union Savings Bank lifted its holdings in shares of Darden Restaurants by 44.0% in the fourth quarter. Union Savings Bank now owns 216 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $35,000 after purchasing an additional 66 shares in the last quarter. Institutional investors own 93.64% of the company’s stock.

Darden Restaurants Stock Performance

Shares of NYSE DRI traded down $1.57 during mid-day trading on Friday, hitting $148.54. The company had a trading volume of 937,500 shares, compared to its average volume of 985,438. The company has a market capitalization of $17.73 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 17.41, a P/E/G ratio of 1.53 and a beta of 1.29. Darden Restaurants, Inc. has a 1 year low of $133.36 and a 1 year high of $176.84. The company has a current ratio of 0.39, a quick ratio of 0.25 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.63. The stock’s 50-day moving average price is $152.79 and its 200-day moving average price is $160.13.

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

Darden Restaurants announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a stock buyback program on Thursday, March 21st that permits the company to buyback $1.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the restaurant operator to reacquire up to 5% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are usually an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

Darden Restaurants Announces Dividend

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Wednesday, May 1st. Stockholders of record on Wednesday, April 10th were given a $1.31 dividend. This represents a $5.24 annualized dividend and a dividend yield of 3.53%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, April 9th. Darden Restaurants’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is presently 61.43%.

Insider Activity at Darden Restaurants

In related news, 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 sale, the insider now owns 17,208 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,848,268.16. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. In related news, Director William S. Simon sold 1,219 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction on Monday, April 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $158.21, for a total transaction of $192,857.99. Following the completion of the sale, the director now owns 6,281 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $993,717.01. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this link. Also, insider Melvin John Martin sold 7,673 shares of Darden Restaurants stock in a transaction on Wednesday, March 27th. The shares were sold at an average price of $165.52, for a total value of $1,270,034.96. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 17,208 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,848,268.16. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last quarter, insiders sold 13,599 shares of company stock valued at $2,197,891. Company insiders own 0.85% of the company’s stock.

Wall Street Analysts Forecast Growth

A number of research analysts have recently weighed in on DRI shares. Wedbush dropped their target price on Darden Restaurants from $187.00 to $181.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, March 22nd. Citigroup dropped their target price on Darden Restaurants from $192.00 to $191.00 and set a “buy” rating on the stock in a report on Wednesday. TD Cowen restated a “buy” rating and issued a $190.00 target price on shares of Darden Restaurants in a report on Monday, April 22nd. Stifel Nicolaus increased their price target on Darden Restaurants from $185.00 to $190.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research report on Tuesday, March 19th. Finally, Truist Financial reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $190.00 price target on shares of Darden Restaurants in a research report on Friday, March 22nd. Five equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and sixteen have assigned a buy rating to the stock. Based on data from MarketBeat.com, the company presently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and a consensus target price of $177.90.

Check Out Our Latest Stock Analysis on DRI

About Darden Restaurants

(Free Report)

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI)

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