Darden Restaurants (NYSE: DRI) reported a net loss for the fourth quarter of 2020, compared to profit last year, as sales decreased during the three-month period. The results, meanwhile, exceeded the forecast and the company’s stock gained early Thursday following the announcement.
The company reported a loss of $1.24 per share for the quarter, on an adjusted basis, compared to earnings of $1.76 per share a year earlier. Unadjusted net loss was $480 million or $3.86 per share, compared to earnings of $208 million or $1.67 per share in the fourth quarter of 2019.
Total sales plunged 43% annually to $1.27 billion during the quarter, hurt by negative blended same-restaurant sales that was partially offset by an extra week of operations and new store additions.
Both earnings and sales came in above the market’s prediction. Darden’s shares made strong gains during pre-market trading on Thursday, after closing the previous session lower. The stock has lost 37% since the beginning of the year and 42% in the past twelve months.
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