UPDATE: Bank of America Upgrades Darden Restaurants to Neutral; Dividend Raise Offsets Weak Guidance
Bank of America upgraded Darden Restaurants (NYSE: DRI) from Underperform to Neutral and raised the price objective from $45.00 to $50.00.
Bank of America noted, "Darden has effectively guided down three times since last Friday – first for FY 2013, at its analyst meeting for FY 2014 and for its sustainable near term growth rate. The risk of lower earnings was why we rated the shares Underperform. Realization of this risk seems to be outweighed by a commitment to not only maintain the current dividend but to continue to raise it annually. The stock has traded up despite significantly reduced earnings expectations. We are raising our price objective from $45 to $50 with the latter based on the shares trading at a 4% yield that should increase when the dividend is presumably modestly raised after fiscal (May) YE."
Darden Restaurants closed at $45.79 on Tuesday.
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