Analysts expect that Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC) will announce earnings of $0.26 per share for the current quarter, according to Zacks. Five analysts have provided estimates for Sonic Corp.’s earnings. The highest EPS estimate is $0.28 and the lowest is $0.23. Sonic Corp. posted earnings per share of $0.24 during the same quarter last year, which would indicate a positive year over year growth rate of 8.3%. The firm is scheduled to report its next earnings results on Wednesday, January 3rd.

According to Zacks, analysts expect that Sonic Corp. will report full-year earnings of $1.34 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $1.32 to $1.37. For the next fiscal year, analysts expect that the business will post earnings of $1.52 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $1.49 to $1.54. Zacks’ EPS averages are an average based on a survey of sell-side analysts that that provide coverage for Sonic Corp..

Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Monday, October 16th. The restaurant operator reported $0.45 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.43 by $0.02. The firm had revenue of $123.60 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $126.01 million. Sonic Corp. had a net margin of 13.34% and a negative return on equity of 33.92%. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 23.8% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the previous year, the firm earned $0.45 EPS.

A number of research firms have issued reports on SONC. Piper Jaffray Companies reaffirmed a “buy” rating and set a $32.00 price objective on shares of Sonic Corp. in a report on Wednesday, July 26th. Citigroup Inc. assumed coverage on shares of Sonic Corp. in a report on Monday, September 18th. They set a “buy” rating and a $28.00 price objective on the stock. Cowen and Company reissued a “neutral” rating on shares of Sonic Corp. in a report on Tuesday, October 17th. Zacks Investment Research raised shares of Sonic Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, August 1st. Finally, BidaskClub downgraded shares of Sonic Corp. from a “sell” rating to a “strong sell” rating in a report on Thursday, July 27th. Three equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. Sonic Corp. presently has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $27.73.

In other news, Director Federico F. Pena sold 1,161 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, October 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $25.20, for a total transaction of $29,257.20. Following the sale, the director now directly owns 1,187,659 shares in the company, valued at $29,929,006.80. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, Director Steven A. Davis purchased 2,000 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, September 6th. The shares were bought at an average price of $23.00 per share, for a total transaction of $46,000.00. The disclosure for this purchase can be found here. Corporate insiders own 6.24% of the company’s stock.

Several institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in SONC. Riverhead Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of Sonic Corp. by 77.7% in the second quarter. Riverhead Capital Management LLC now owns 4,797 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $127,000 after purchasing an additional 2,097 shares during the last quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC increased its position in shares of Sonic Corp. by 74.5% in the second quarter. Flinton Capital Management LLC now owns 6,290 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $167,000 after purchasing an additional 2,686 shares during the last quarter. Aperio Group LLC increased its position in shares of Sonic Corp. by 1.4% in the second quarter. Aperio Group LLC now owns 8,348 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $221,000 after purchasing an additional 119 shares during the last quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue increased its position in shares of Sonic Corp. by 72.7% in the second quarter. State of Alaska Department of Revenue now owns 8,378 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $221,000 after purchasing an additional 3,528 shares during the last quarter. Finally, HL Financial Services LLC bought a new position in shares of Sonic Corp. in the second quarter worth approximately $227,000.

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Sonic Corp. (SONC) opened at $24.76 on Friday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of -3.19, a quick ratio of 1.48 and a current ratio of 1.52. The stock has a market cap of $996.60, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.82, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.22 and a beta of 1.75. Sonic Corp. has a fifty-two week low of $22.11 and a fifty-two week high of $30.05.

Sonic Corp. announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock buyback plan on Wednesday, August 9th that authorizes the company to buyback $160.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization authorizes the restaurant operator to purchase up to 16.2% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback plans are typically an indication that the company’s leadership believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, November 17th. Investors of record on Wednesday, November 8th were paid a $0.16 dividend. This is a boost from Sonic Corp.’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.14. This represents a $0.64 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.58%. The ex-dividend date was Tuesday, November 7th. Sonic Corp.’s payout ratio is currently 43.84%.

About Sonic Corp.

Sonic Corp. operates and franchises the chain of drive-thru restaurants (Sonic Drive-Ins) in the United States. As of August 31, 2016, 3,557 Sonic Drive-Ins were in operation from coast to coast in 45 states, consisting of 345 Company drive-thrus and 3,212 franchise drive-thrus. As of August 31, 2016, its restaurant design and construction consisted of a kitchen housed in a one-story building, which was approximately 1,500 square feet, flanked by canopy-covered rows of 16 to 24 parking spaces, with each space having its own payment terminal, intercom speaker system and menu board.

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Earnings History and Estimates for Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC)

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