Darden Restaurants’ Upcoming Q1 Earnings Preview

Analysts at Deutsche Bank provided their outlook on Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI) ahead of the upcoming Q1 earnings announcement, scheduled on September 22.

The analysts believe current investor expectations call for Q1 SSS (Same-store sales) result at Olive Garden that is a couple of hundred bps below the current Street estimate of approximately 5.5% growth.

At LongHorn, the analysts’ sense is that investors expect to see Q1 SSS results that are approximately in-line with, to slightly better than, the current Street estimate of a 4.5% growth. The analyst noted that if these current investor expectations are indeed correct, the primary read-through might be the need for downward revisions to near-term SSS estimates for Olive Garden, partially offset by the need for upward revisions to near-term SSS estimates for LongHorn.

The analysts raised their price target on the company’s shares to $131 from $124, while maintaining their hold rating.