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Yum! Brands Stock Fell after Goldman Sachs’s Downgrade

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Jan. 11 2019, Updated 10:12 a.m. ET

Goldman Sachs’s downgrade

On January 11, Goldman Sach downgraded Yum! Brands (YUM) from “neutral” to “sell” due to concerns its high valuation and sales momentum at Pizza Hut and Taco Bell restaurants in the United States, as reported by CNBC. Goldman Sach also lowered its target price from $83 to $76. The new target price represents a fall of 17.2% from its closing price of $91.79 on January 10.

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Analysts’ recommendations

Among the 24 analysts that follow Yum! Brands (YUM), 41.7% recommended a “buy,” 54.2% recommended a “hold,” and 4.2% recommended a “sell.” On average, analysts have set a target price of $94.84, which represents an upside potential of 3.3% from its closing price on January 10.

Since investors’ meeting on December 5, Morgan Stanley, Barclays, and J.P. Morgan have all raised their target prices. On January 10, Morgan Stanley raised its target price from $90 to $97. Barclays raised its target price from $94 to $97 on December 19. J.P. Morgan raised its target price from $90 to $91 on December 17.

Stock performance

Goldman Sachs’s downgrade had a negative impact on Yum! Brands’ stock price. Yum! Brands was trading ~3.0% lower in the pre-market trading hours on January 11. The company’s stock price is trading flat year-to-date as of the closing price on January 10. During the same period, Domino’s Pizza (DPZ) and Papa John’s (PZZA) have returned -0.7% and 6.7%, respectively. The broader comparative index, the Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLY), which invests ~7.5% of its holdings in restaurant and travel companies, has returned 5.5% during the same period.

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