Analysts expect that Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE:YUM) will report earnings of $0.96 per share for the current fiscal quarter, according to Zacks. Seven analysts have provided estimates for Yum! Brands’ earnings, with the highest EPS estimate coming in at $1.03 and the lowest estimate coming in at $0.93. Yum! Brands also posted earnings of $0.96 per share in the same quarter last year. The firm is expected to announce its next earnings report on Thursday, February 14th.

On average, analysts expect that Yum! Brands will report full year earnings of $3.72 per share for the current financial year, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.68 to $3.77. For the next year, analysts expect that the company will post earnings of $3.80 per share, with EPS estimates ranging from $3.75 to $3.85. Zacks Investment Research’s earnings per share averages are an average based on a survey of research firms that follow Yum! Brands.

Yum! Brands (NYSE:YUM) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Wednesday, October 31st. The restaurant operator reported $1.04 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.83 by $0.21. Yum! Brands had a negative return on equity of 17.89% and a net margin of 28.81%. The business had revenue of $1.39 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.37 billion. During the same period last year, the business posted $0.68 EPS. The business’s revenue was down 3.1% compared to the same quarter last year.

A number of research analysts have recently issued reports on the company. Zacks Investment Research downgraded Yum! Brands from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Saturday, December 1st. Cowen restated a “buy” rating and set a $100.00 target price on shares of Yum! Brands in a research note on Sunday, December 2nd. BTIG Research boosted their target price on Yum! Brands from $92.00 to $102.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a research note on Wednesday, October 10th. Gordon Haskett initiated coverage on Yum! Brands in a research note on Thursday, October 18th. They set a “hold” rating and a $90.00 target price on the stock. Finally, KeyCorp initiated coverage on Yum! Brands in a research note on Wednesday, October 3rd. They set a “sector weight” rating on the stock. Thirteen equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and eight have given a buy rating to the company. Yum! Brands has a consensus rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $91.31.

Shares of NYSE:YUM traded down $1.07 on Friday, reaching $90.43. The company had a trading volume of 2,995,200 shares, compared to its average volume of 2,099,871. Yum! Brands has a 52-week low of $75.88 and a 52-week high of $93.24. The company has a market capitalization of $28.32 billion, a PE ratio of 30.55, a P/E/G ratio of 1.91 and a beta of 0.80.

Yum! Brands announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback program on Friday, August 10th that permits the company to buyback $2.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization permits the restaurant operator to reacquire up to 7.6% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback programs are often an indication that the company’s board believes its stock is undervalued.

The company also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, December 7th. Shareholders of record on Monday, November 26th will be given a dividend of $0.36 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Friday, November 23rd. This represents a $1.44 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.59%. Yum! Brands’s dividend payout ratio is currently 48.65%.

In other Yum! Brands news, CEO Roger G. Eaton sold 44,823 shares of Yum! Brands stock in a transaction dated Thursday, November 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $90.54, for a total transaction of $4,058,274.42. Following the completion of the sale, the chief executive officer now owns 160,726 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $14,552,132.04. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this hyperlink. Also, VP David Eric Russell sold 7,340 shares of Yum! Brands stock in a transaction dated Tuesday, September 25th. The stock was sold at an average price of $90.00, for a total value of $660,600.00. Following the sale, the vice president now directly owns 25,960 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $2,336,400. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 72,034 shares of company stock valued at $6,468,508. 0.63% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

A number of institutional investors and hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of the business. Victory Capital Management Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Yum! Brands by 3,028.1% in the 3rd quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 1,748,932 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $158,996,000 after buying an additional 1,693,021 shares during the period. Millennium Management LLC lifted its holdings in shares of Yum! Brands by 447.8% in the 2nd quarter. Millennium Management LLC now owns 1,404,786 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $109,882,000 after buying an additional 1,148,364 shares during the period. Alps Advisors Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Yum! Brands by 35,420.9% in the 2nd quarter. Alps Advisors Inc. now owns 917,505 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $74,877,000 after buying an additional 914,922 shares during the period. BlackRock Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of Yum! Brands by 3.8% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 21,758,890 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $1,701,978,000 after buying an additional 802,066 shares during the period. Finally, Renaissance Technologies LLC acquired a new position in shares of Yum! Brands in the 2nd quarter valued at about $41,120,000. 70.89% of the stock is owned by institutional investors.

About Yum! Brands

YUM! Brands, Inc, together with its subsidiaries, develops, operates, and franchises quick service restaurants worldwide. It operates in three segments: the KFC Division, the Pizza Hut Division, and the Taco Bell Division. The company operates restaurants under the KFC, Pizza Hut, and Taco Bell brands, which specialize in chicken, pizza, and Mexican-style food categories.

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