Dunkin Brands Group (DNKN) Lifted to Buy at Zacks Investment Research

Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of Dunkin Brands Group (NASDAQ:DNKN) from a hold rating to a buy rating in a report released on Thursday. Zacks Investment Research currently has $80.00 target price on the restaurant operator’s stock.

According to Zacks, “Shares of Dunkin’ Brands’ have outperformed the industry in the past year. The company’s increased focus on menu innovation especially on premium products to offer great beverages is likely to drive growth. Banking on its already established namesake, the company has undertaken the implementation of a six-part plan to fuel Dunkin’ Brands’ strategic growth in the United States and better position itself as a beverage-led On-the-Go brand. Moreover, strong digital initiatives and aggressive expansion strategies by the company also add to the positives. The company has also raised the 2018 guidance for adjusted earnings given its robust sales building and refranchising efforts. Earnings estimate for the current year has also increased over the past 30 days. However, high costs of operations and stiff competition continues to be potential headwinds.”

Several other analysts also recently weighed in on DNKN. Citigroup lifted their price objective on shares of Dunkin Brands Group from $80.00 to $83.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Monday, August 13th. BidaskClub upgraded shares of Dunkin Brands Group from a buy rating to a strong-buy rating in a research report on Friday, August 17th. Goldman Sachs Group boosted their price target on shares of Dunkin Brands Group from $49.00 to $54.00 and gave the stock a sell rating in a research report on Tuesday, September 11th. Royal Bank of Canada downgraded shares of Dunkin Brands Group from an outperform rating to a sector perform rating and set a $76.02 price target on the stock. in a research report on Friday, September 14th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. Finally, Maxim Group boosted their price target on shares of Dunkin Brands Group from $77.00 to $83.00 and gave the stock a buy rating in a research report on Wednesday, September 26th. They noted that the move was a valuation call. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, fifteen have assigned a hold rating and twelve have assigned a buy rating to the company’s stock. The company currently has a consensus rating of Hold and an average price target of $70.22.

Shares of NASDAQ:DNKN opened at $74.00 on Thursday. The stock has a market capitalization of $6.11 billion, a P/E ratio of 30.45, a PEG ratio of 2.11 and a beta of 0.33. Dunkin Brands Group has a fifty-two week low of $56.77 and a fifty-two week high of $77.13.

Dunkin Brands Group (NASDAQ:DNKN) last issued its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, October 25th. The restaurant operator reported $0.83 earnings per share for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.73 by $0.10. The firm had revenue of $350.01 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $344.17 million. Dunkin Brands Group had a net margin of 30.28% and a negative return on equity of 41.14%. On average, equities analysts predict that Dunkin Brands Group will post 2.84 earnings per share for the current year.

The firm also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Wednesday, December 5th. Investors of record on Monday, November 26th will be issued a $0.3475 dividend. The ex-dividend date is Friday, November 23rd. This represents a $1.39 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.88%. Dunkin Brands Group’s payout ratio is currently 57.20%.

In related news, CFO Katherine D. Jaspon sold 1,900 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Wednesday, November 7th. The shares were sold at an average price of $73.28, for a total value of $139,232.00. Following the sale, the chief financial officer now directly owns 4,411 shares in the company, valued at approximately $323,238.08. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Richard J. Emmett sold 45,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Thursday, November 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $73.91, for a total transaction of $3,325,950.00. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 38,208 shares in the company, valued at $2,823,953.28. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 524,591 shares of company stock worth $38,151,848 over the last quarter. Insiders own 3.00% of the company’s stock.

Several hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently added to or reduced their stakes in DNKN. Smithfield Trust Co. raised its holdings in shares of Dunkin Brands Group by 2,018.5% in the 3rd quarter. Smithfield Trust Co. now owns 1,377 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $102,000 after purchasing an additional 1,312 shares in the last quarter. First Hawaiian Bank purchased a new position in shares of Dunkin Brands Group in the third quarter worth approximately $110,000. Fort L.P. purchased a new position in shares of Dunkin Brands Group in the second quarter worth approximately $123,000. Advisors Preferred LLC increased its position in shares of Dunkin Brands Group by 797.1% in the second quarter. Advisors Preferred LLC now owns 1,857 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $128,000 after acquiring an additional 1,650 shares in the last quarter. Finally, Stratos Wealth Partners LTD. purchased a new position in shares of Dunkin Brands Group in the third quarter worth approximately $169,000. Institutional investors and hedge funds own 96.34% of the company’s stock.

Dunkin Brands Group Company Profile

Dunkin' Brands Group, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, develops, franchises, and licenses quick service restaurants worldwide. The company operates through four segments: Dunkin' Donuts U.S., Dunkin' Donuts International, Baskin-Robbins International, and Baskin-Robbins U.S. Its restaurants offer hot and cold coffee, baked goods, donuts, bagels, muffins, breakfast sandwiches, hard and soft serve ice creams, frozen yogurts, shakes, malts, floats, and cakes.

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