Darden Restaurants, Inc. (DRI) - NYSE
  • Mar. 7, 2015, 10:13 AM
    • A powerhouse quarter of improved comps and widened margins is in the books for the restaurant industry as investors look forward to see if the trend extends.
    • The industry is in a growth phase with eating and drinking establishments adding 58.7K jobs in February on a seasonally adjusted basis to mark the biggest monthly gain since December of 2012.
    • The early read on Q1 traffic is favorable (ex-weather), although chains could see some wage inflation pressure and innovation outlays with differentiated concepts popping up at Habit Restaurants (NASDAQ:HABT), Zoe's Kitchen (NYSE:ZOES), Shake Shack (NYSE:SHAK), and a host of others.
    • Major digital initiatives at chains such as Panera Bread (NASDAQ:PNRA) and Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) also have the potential to be disruptive.
    • A few screens to pick through the restaurant stock menu are listed below.
    • Lowest forward P/E ratio: McDonald's (NYSE:MCD), Ruth's Hospitality (NASDAQ:RUTH), and Cracker Barrel (NASDAQ:CBRL).
    • Lowest price/free cash flow ratio: Ruby Tuesday (NYSE:RT), Nathan's (NASDAQ:NATH), Jack in the Box (NASDAQ:JACK).
    • Dividend yield +3%: DineEquity (NYSE:DIN), Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI), McDonald's, and Arcos Dorados (NYSE:ARCO).
    • Top YTD performers: Jack in the Box (JACK), Wendy's (NASDAQ:WEN), Sonic (NASDAQ:SONC), El Pollo LoCo (NASDAQ:LOCO).
    • PEG ratio below 2.00: Chuy's Holdings (NASDAQ:CHUY), Ruth's Hospitality, Krispy Kreme Donuts (NYSE:KKD), Cheesecake Factory (NASDAQ:CAKE), Brinker International (NYSE:EAT), Denny's (NASDAQ:DENN), Buffalo Wild Wings (NASDAQ:BWLD).
    • Short ratio below 2%: Yum Brands (NYSE:YUM), Jack in the Box (JACK), Chipotle (NYSE:CMG), DineEquity, Bloomin' Brands (NASDAQ:BLMN), Denny's (DENN), McDonald's (MCD).
    • Previously: Restaurant stocks continue hot streak (Feb. 24)
    | Mar. 7, 2015, 10:13 AM | 18 Comments
  • Feb. 24, 2015, 10:53 AM
    • Restaurant stocks are out-performing market averages again as more chains report improved comparable-restaurant sales growth.
    • The read on Q1 is that pricing and traffic trends are strong, despite what some broad measures of overall consumer confidence show.
    • The $2 gas benefit is believed by analysts to have had a greater impact on restaurant spending than other areas of retail.
    • Gainers include Luby's (LUB +4.9%), Cosi (COSI +5.4%), Rave Restaurant Group (RAVE +4.5%), Texas Roadhouse (TXRH +2.4%), Krispy Kreme Dougnuts (KKD +2.8%), Popeyes Louisian Kitchen (PLKI +1.7%), Bob Evans Farms (BOBE +1.1%), Darden Restaurants (DRI +1.4%).
    • Even McDonald's (MCD +0.8%), which trailed the Q4 comp average in the sector by a wide margin, is out ahead of the S&P 500.
    • Previously: Cracker Barrel +4.1% after traffic accelerates and guidance lifted
    | Feb. 24, 2015, 10:53 AM | 5 Comments
  • Feb. 23, 2015, 8:29 AM
    • Darden International (NYSE:DRI) appoints interim CEO Eugene Lee as the permanent CEO, effective immediately.
    • Lee has the backing of the Starboard Value-influenced board which also interviewed external candidates.
    | Feb. 23, 2015, 8:29 AM
  • Feb. 12, 2015, 9:43 AM
    | Feb. 12, 2015, 9:43 AM | 3 Comments
  • Feb. 11, 2015, 10:37 AM
    | Feb. 11, 2015, 10:37 AM | 6 Comments
  • Jan. 23, 2015, 11:25 AM
    | Jan. 23, 2015, 11:25 AM | 13 Comments
  • Jan. 9, 2015, 1:38 PM
    | Jan. 9, 2015, 1:38 PM | 5 Comments
  • Jan. 9, 2015, 8:35 AM
    | Jan. 9, 2015, 8:35 AM | 111 Comments
  • Dec. 31, 2014, 11:33 AM
    • Consumer spending: More consumers say they are willing to trade-up to a traditional dining spot from fast-casual than trade-down to a fast-food option, according to Technomic. The revelation takes some of the steam away from the argument that lower gas prices will boost traffic at major fast-food chains.
    • IPOs: Profitable 2014 launches by Zoes Kitchen (ZOES -0.2%) and Habit Burger (HABT -0.5%) could inspire other private chains to go public. Shake Stack (Pending:SHAK) got an early jump by filing this week for an IPO.
    • Labor costs: Analysts see a risk to profitability in the sector from the wave of minimum wage laws set to go into effect over the next year. Some analysts think President Obama will push for federal legislation with the issue hard for election-minded Republicans to oppose strongly.
    • Fast-casual pizza: A breakout of a fast-casual pizza concept is widely expected in 2015 (candidates).
    • Chipotle: Another +30% run for the Mexican chain off of sizzling comps leaves it with limited upside, according to some analysts. Chipotle (CMG +0.8%) execs don't agree, noting during the Q3 earnings call (transcript) that enormous upside exists to maximize peak transactions per hour (350-400). Beef, cheese, and avocado pricing will be key for CMG next year as well.
    • Restaurant stocks: CAKE, CBRLDNKN, DPZ, DRI, EAT, JACK, MCD, PNRA, RRGB, RT, SBUX, SONC, WEN, BWLD, BDL, NATH, LUB, QSR, CHUY, BLMN, PZZA, TXRH, DENN, KKD, BBRG, DFRG, BOBE, RUTH, IRG, DIN.
    | Dec. 31, 2014, 11:33 AM | 11 Comments
  • Dec. 24, 2014, 9:57 AM
    • The restaurant industry will run up against soft comps in January and February due to last year's winter storms which were much worse than normal.
    • Restaurant same-store sales will rise just over 2% for the full year, according to an estimate from the co-founder of the NRN-MillerPulse tracking survey.
    • Technomic sees a 3% growth in restaurant comps in 2015, while Fitch Ratings has an outlook for 2% to 3%.
    • On the cost side, commodity prices for chicken, cheese, wheat, and pork are all expected to moderate. However, beef prices are seen increasing 4% to 8%.
    • Minimum wage increases in many state kick in on January 1 which could impact the bottom line for many chains.
    • Fresh IPOs, concept acquisitions, and leveraged buyouts care expected to be major themes in 2015, according to analysts.
    • CEOs on the hot seat include Don Thompson at McDonald's (NYSE:MCD) and Nigel Travis at Dunkin' Brands (NASDAQ:DNKN).
    • Restaurant stocks: CAKE, CBRL, CMG, DPZ, DRI, EAT, JACK, PNRA, RRGB, RT, SBUX, SONC, WEN, BWLD, THI, BDL, NATH, LUB, BKW, CHUY, BLMN, PZZA, TXRH, DENN, KKD, BBRG, DFRG, BOBE, RUTH, IRG, DIN, HABT, NDLS, PLKI, LOCO, YUM, KKD, BOBE, TAST, GTIM, FRSH, COSI, FRS, PBPB, FRGI, QSR.
    | Dec. 24, 2014, 9:57 AM | 18 Comments
  • Dec. 16, 2014, 4:34 PM
    • Guidance: Fiscal 2015 adjusted EPS is expected to increase 32-35% from 2014 to $2.25-$2.30 per share (previous bottom end was $2.22).
    • Buybacks: In FQ2, company took receipt of about 8.6M shares as first installment of the $500M accelerated share repurchase program. Since quarter's end, company has taken receipt of another 1.3M shares.
    • Turning to FQ2 operations, comp store sales: Olive Garden +0.5%, LongHorn Steakhouse +2.6%, The Capital Grille +5%, Eddie V's +4.9%, Yard House +3.7%, Seasons 52 +1.2%, Bahama Breeze -0.6%.
    • Previously: Darden Restaurants beats by $0.01, beats on revenue (Dec. 16, 2014)
    • DRI +2% after hours
    | Dec. 16, 2014, 4:34 PM | 2 Comments
  • Dec. 16, 2014, 4:19 PM
    • Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) declares $0.55/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.
    • Forward yield 3.93%
    • Payable Feb. 2; for shareholders of record Jan. 9; ex-div Jan. 7.
    | Dec. 16, 2014, 4:19 PM
  • Dec. 16, 2014, 4:12 PM
    • Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI): FQ2 EPS of $0.28 beats by $0.01.
    • Revenue of $1.56B beats by $10M.
    • Shares +1.77%.
    | Dec. 16, 2014, 4:12 PM
  • Dec. 15, 2014, 5:30 PM
    | Dec. 15, 2014, 5:30 PM | 3 Comments
  • Dec. 1, 2014, 3:30 PM
    | Dec. 1, 2014, 3:30 PM
  • Nov. 29, 2014, 10:29 AM
    • Analysts with Gasbuddy.com predict some gas stations in the U.S. will offer $2 per gallon gas by Christmas.
    • The last time the average price of gas in the U.S. was below $2 was in March of 2009.
    • Forecasts from economists vary widely on the overall gas benefit to consumers for Q4. The high end from the group is an outlook of $300 per household, while the low end is closer to $100.
    • Most analysts see an immediate lift for retail chains with large distribution channels. Wal-Mart (NYSE:WMT), Target (NYSE:TGT), Costco (NASDAQ:COST), Dollar General (NYSE:DG), Family Dollar (NYSE:FDO), Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR), Big Lots (NYSE:BIG), and Five Below (NASDAQ:FIVE) come to mind.
    • Airline stocks (JBLU, DAL, UAL, LUV, AAL, RJET, ALK, HA, ALGT, VA) have already ripped strong gains off the OPEC news, although some see even more long-term upside as forward fuel hedges get reworked.
    • A sustained period of low gas prices should lift restaurant stocks  (CAKE, CBRL, CMG, DNKN, DPZ, DRI, EAT, JACK, MCD, PNRA, RRGB, RT, SBUX, SONC, WEN, BWLD, THI, BDL, NATHLUB, BKW, CHUY, BLMN, PZZA, TXRH, DENN, KKD, BBRG, DFRG, BOBE, RUTH, IRG, DIN) say some analysts.
    • The gaming sector is (CZR, PNK, BYD, ISLE, CNTY, MCRI, MGM, NYNY) also an off-the-radar pick to bounce.
    | Nov. 29, 2014, 10:29 AM | 146 Comments
Company Description
Darden Restaurants, Inc. engages in the provision of restaurant services. The company's restaurant brands include Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Bahama Breeze, Seasons 52, The Capital Grille, Eddie V's and Yard House. The Olive Garden brand is a full service dining Italian restaurant... More
Sector: Services
Industry: Restaurants
Country: United States