Wendy’s Company (The) (WEN) Stock Rating Upgraded by Zacks Investment Research

Wendy’s Company (The) (NASDAQ:WEN) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report issued to clients and investors on Friday, May 12th.

According to Zacks, “Wendy’s shares widely outpaced the Zacks classified Retail–Restaurants industry over the past year. The company’s Q1 2017 adjusted earnings of $0.09 topped the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 12.5% but declined 18.2% year over year (y/y) due to lower sales. Revenue of $285.8 million surpassed the consensus mark by 2.3% but slumped 24.6% y/y. Revenues have been declining y/y over the past few quarters because of reduced number of company-operated restaurants as a result of its system optimization initiative. Though Wendy’s transition to a franchise-based business model has been weighing on revenues, it is expected to lower the company’s general and administrative expenses, thereby boosting earnings, 2017 onwards. Yet, higher labor costs might keep profits under pressure. Nevertheless, initiatives like its Image Activation program, menu innovation and global expansion would help offset the negatives to some extent.”

Several other analysts have also issued reports on the company. Instinet reissued a “neutral” rating and set a $15.00 price target (up previously from $11.00) on shares of Wendy’s Company (The) in a report on Thursday, May 11th. Royal Bank Of Canada boosted their price target on Wendy’s Company (The) from $11.00 to $15.00 and gave the company a “sector perform” rating in a report on Thursday, May 11th. SunTrust Banks, Inc. set a $18.00 price target on Wendy’s Company (The) and gave the company a “buy” rating in a report on Thursday, May 11th. Stephens boosted their price target on Wendy’s Company (The) from $16.00 to $18.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a report on Thursday, May 11th. Finally, Vetr lowered Wendy’s Company (The) from a “strong-buy” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $16.92 price target for the company. in a report on Monday, May 8th. Eleven research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $14.87.

Analyst Recommendations for Wendy`s Company (The) (NASDAQ:WEN)

Wendy’s Company (NASDAQ WEN) traded up 0.33% during midday trading on Friday, hitting $15.23. The stock had a trading volume of 4,038,995 shares. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $15.72 and a 200-day moving average price of $14.18. The stock has a market cap of $3.74 billion, a P/E ratio of 30.89 and a beta of 0.95. Wendy’s Company has a 52 week low of $9.15 and a 52 week high of $16.66.

Wendy’s Company (The) (NASDAQ:WEN) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Wednesday, May 10th. The restaurant operator reported $0.09 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $0.08 by $0.01. Wendy’s Company (The) had a return on equity of 16.31% and a net margin of 9.43%. The company had revenue of $285.82 million during the quarter. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $0.11 EPS. The firm’s revenue was down 24.6% compared to the same quarter last year. Equities analysts expect that Wendy’s Company will post $0.46 EPS for the current year.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, June 15th. Investors of record on Thursday, June 1st were paid a dividend of $0.07 per share. This represents a $0.28 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.84%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, May 30th. Wendy’s Company (The)’s payout ratio is presently 58.33%.

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In related news, major shareholder Trian Partners Parallel Fund I sold 5,500,000 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, June 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $15.97, for a total transaction of $87,835,000.00. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. 22.70% of the stock is currently owned by corporate insiders.

A number of institutional investors have recently made changes to their positions in WEN. Tyers Asset Management LLC purchased a new position in shares of Wendy’s Company (The) during the fourth quarter worth approximately $101,000. Laurion Capital Management LP purchased a new position in shares of Wendy’s Company (The) during the third quarter worth approximately $122,000. Elkfork Partners LLC purchased a new position in shares of Wendy’s Company (The) during the fourth quarter worth approximately $139,000. Weiss Asset Management LP purchased a new position in shares of Wendy’s Company (The) during the first quarter worth approximately $150,000. Finally, Cantab Capital Partners LLP purchased a new position in shares of Wendy’s Company (The) during the fourth quarter worth approximately $156,000. 77.68% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

Wendy’s Company (The) Company Profile

The Wendy’s Company is the parent company of subsidiary holding company Wendy’s Restaurants, LLC (Wendy’s Restaurants). Wendy’s Restaurants is the parent company of Wendy’s International, LLC (Wendy’s), which is the owner and franchisor of the Wendy’s restaurant system in the United States. Wendy’s is a restaurant company specializing in the hamburger sandwich segment.

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