Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V. decreased its stake in Yum! Brands, Inc. (NYSE:YUM) by 29.8% during the 4th quarter, HoldingsChannel reports. The institutional investor owned 339,378 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock after selling 144,349 shares during the period. Robeco Institutional Asset Management B.V.’s holdings in Yum! Brands were worth $34,184,000 at the end of the most recent quarter.

Several other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also added to or reduced their stakes in YUM. BlackRock Inc. raised its position in shares of Yum! Brands by 13.3% during the second quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 25,133,613 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $2,781,538,000 after purchasing an additional 2,947,074 shares during the period. Sustainable Growth Advisers LP raised its position in shares of Yum! Brands by 22.8% during the fourth quarter. Sustainable Growth Advisers LP now owns 5,332,769 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $537,170,000 after purchasing an additional 991,076 shares during the period. Victory Capital Management Inc. raised its position in shares of Yum! Brands by 39.0% during the fourth quarter. Victory Capital Management Inc. now owns 1,829,591 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $193,515,000 after purchasing an additional 513,028 shares during the period. State Street Corp raised its position in shares of Yum! Brands by 1.8% during the third quarter. State Street Corp now owns 14,233,314 shares of the restaurant operator’s stock worth $1,614,485,000 after purchasing an additional 257,270 shares during the period. Finally, M&G Investment Management Ltd. acquired a new stake in shares of Yum! Brands during the fourth quarter worth about $25,858,000. 75.29% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.

YUM stock traded up $0.30 during mid-day trading on Friday, reaching $105.33. The company had a trading volume of 43,692 shares, compared to its average volume of 1,886,458. The stock has a 50 day simple moving average of $103.54 and a two-hundred day simple moving average of $107.49. The company has a market capitalization of $31.49 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 25.42, a PEG ratio of 2.14 and a beta of 0.44. Yum! Brands, Inc. has a 52 week low of $92.02 and a 52 week high of $119.72.

Yum! Brands (NYSE:YUM) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, February 6th. The restaurant operator reported $1.00 earnings per share for the quarter, missing the Zacks’ consensus estimate of $1.13 by ($0.13). The company had revenue of $1.69 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $1.66 billion. Yum! Brands had a net margin of 23.12% and a negative return on equity of 13.90%. The firm’s revenue for the quarter was up 8.7% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the business earned $0.40 earnings per share. As a group, equities analysts expect that Yum! Brands, Inc. will post 3.93 EPS for the current fiscal year.

Yum! Brands declared that its Board of Directors has approved a stock buyback program on Thursday, November 21st that allows the company to buyback $2.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the restaurant operator to repurchase up to 6.7% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are often a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Friday, March 6th. Shareholders of record on Friday, February 14th will be paid a $0.47 dividend. This represents a $1.88 dividend on an annualized basis and a yield of 1.78%. This is an increase from Yum! Brands’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.42. The ex-dividend date of this dividend is Thursday, February 13th. Yum! Brands’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 47.32%.

In other Yum! Brands news, Director Greg Creed sold 45,113 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, February 10th. The stock was sold at an average price of $102.35, for a total value of $4,617,315.55. Following the completion of the transaction, the director now directly owns 194,619 shares in the company, valued at $19,919,254.65. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, President David W. Gibbs sold 1,530 shares of the firm’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, December 16th. The shares were sold at an average price of $100.43, for a total value of $153,657.90. Following the completion of the transaction, the president now owns 43,266 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $4,345,204.38. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. 0.67% of the stock is owned by company insiders.

A number of research firms have recently commented on YUM. Cfra lowered Yum! Brands from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a research report on Wednesday, October 30th. Cowen downgraded Yum! Brands from an “outperform” rating to a “market perform” rating and decreased their price objective for the stock from $117.00 to $109.00 in a report on Wednesday, January 8th. Morgan Stanley upgraded Yum! Brands from an “equal weight” rating to an “overweight” rating and increased their price objective for the stock from $113.00 to $118.00 in a report on Friday, January 17th. Argus downgraded Yum! Brands from a “buy” rating to a “hold” rating in a report on Tuesday, December 17th. Finally, UBS Group decreased their price objective on Yum! Brands from $125.00 to $120.00 and set a “buy” rating for the company in a report on Monday, February 3rd. One analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, eighteen have issued a hold rating and five have given a buy rating to the stock. Yum! Brands presently has an average rating of “Hold” and an average target price of $111.42.

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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Institutional Ownership by Quarter for Yum! Brands (NYSE:YUM)

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