Bank of America Corp DE reduced its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC) by 21.4% during the first quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The institutional investor owned 188,965 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock after selling 51,580 shares during the period. Bank of America Corp DE owned about 0.45% of Sonic Corp. worth $4,793,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.
A number of other hedge funds also recently modified their holdings of SONC. BlackRock Inc. raised its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. by 121,423.6% in the first quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 5,323,947 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock valued at $135,015,000 after buying an additional 5,319,566 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. by 1.0% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 3,553,354 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $90,114,000 after buying an additional 33,747 shares during the period. RidgeWorth Capital Management LLC acquired a new stake in shares of Sonic Corp. during the first quarter worth about $50,669,000. Morgan Stanley raised its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. by 310.9% in the first quarter. Morgan Stanley now owns 866,118 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $21,965,000 after buying an additional 655,352 shares during the period. Finally, Rothschild Asset Management Inc. raised its stake in shares of Sonic Corp. by 1.0% in the first quarter. Rothschild Asset Management Inc. now owns 841,009 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $21,328,000 after buying an additional 8,378 shares during the period. Hedge funds and other institutional investors own 97.48% of the company’s stock.
Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC) opened at 23.77 on Friday. Sonic Corp. has a one year low of $21.12 and a one year high of $30.05. The firm has a market capitalization of $993.80 million, a P/E ratio of 15.85 and a beta of 1.74. The company has a 50-day moving average price of $24.79 and a 200-day moving average price of $26.05.
Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC) last released its quarterly earnings data on Thursday, June 22nd. The restaurant operator reported $0.43 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $0.41 by $0.02. Sonic Corp. had a negative return on equity of 44.21% and a net margin of 13.23%. The business had revenue of $124 million during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $122.58 million. During the same quarter in the previous year, the firm posted $0.43 EPS. The business’s revenue for the quarter was down 24.9% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, equities research analysts anticipate that Sonic Corp. will post $1.24 EPS for the current year.
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, August 18th. Investors of record on Wednesday, August 9th were given a dividend of $0.14 per share. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Monday, August 7th. This represents a $0.56 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 2.36%. Sonic Corp.’s dividend payout ratio is currently 37.33%.
Sonic Corp. announced that its Board of Directors has authorized a stock repurchase plan on Wednesday, August 9th that allows the company to buyback $160.00 million in outstanding shares. This buyback authorization allows the restaurant operator to buy up to 16.2% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares buyback plans are generally a sign that the company’s board of directors believes its shares are undervalued.
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A number of analysts have issued reports on SONC shares. Bank of America Corporation reiterated an “underperform” rating and set a $28.00 price target (down from $30.00) on shares of Sonic Corp. in a research note on Sunday, June 25th. Zacks Investment Research lowered shares of Sonic Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Tuesday, July 18th. BidaskClub lowered shares of Sonic Corp. from a “hold” rating to a “sell” rating in a research note on Sunday, July 16th. Jefferies Group LLC reiterated a “hold” rating and set a $26.00 price target on shares of Sonic Corp. in a research note on Thursday, July 27th. Finally, Wells Fargo & Company initiated coverage on shares of Sonic Corp. in a research note on Tuesday, May 23rd. They set a “market perform” rating and a $30.00 price target on the stock. Three research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, ten have given a hold rating and four have assigned a buy rating to the company. Sonic Corp. currently has a consensus rating of “Hold” and a consensus price target of $27.75.
In related news, Director Steven A. Davis acquired 2,000 shares of Sonic Corp. stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, July 21st. The stock was acquired at an average price of $24.62 per share, for a total transaction of $49,240.00. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is available through the SEC website. Insiders own 6.24% of the company’s stock.
Sonic Corp. Company Profile
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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