Sonic (SONC) Receiving Somewhat Critical Media Coverage, Report Finds

News articles about Sonic (NASDAQ:SONC) have been trending somewhat negative recently, Accern reports. The research firm scores the sentiment of press coverage by analyzing more than 20 million blog and news sources. Accern ranks coverage of public companies on a scale of -1 to 1, with scores closest to one being the most favorable. Sonic earned a daily sentiment score of -0.01 on Accern’s scale. Accern also assigned media coverage about the restaurant operator an impact score of 44.5782024072149 out of 100, meaning that recent press coverage is somewhat unlikely to have an effect on the company’s share price in the next few days.

Shares of Sonic (SONC) opened at $27.94 on Wednesday. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of -3.19, a quick ratio of 1.48 and a current ratio of 1.52. Sonic has a 1 year low of $22.11 and a 1 year high of $30.05. The firm has a market capitalization of $1,108.50, a P/E ratio of 21.68, a P/E/G ratio of 1.40 and a beta of 1.74.

Sonic (NASDAQ:SONC) last released its earnings results on Monday, October 16th. The restaurant operator reported $0.45 EPS for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $0.43 by $0.02. Sonic had a negative return on equity of 33.92% and a net margin of 13.34%. The business had revenue of $123.60 million for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $126.01 million. During the same period in the previous year, the company posted $0.45 earnings per share. The company’s revenue for the quarter was down 23.8% compared to the same quarter last year. research analysts predict that Sonic will post 1.34 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The business also recently announced a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Friday, November 17th. Shareholders of record on Wednesday, November 8th were issued a $0.16 dividend. This represents a $0.64 annualized dividend and a yield of 2.29%. This is an increase from Sonic’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.14. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Tuesday, November 7th. Sonic’s payout ratio is 43.54%.

Sonic announced that its board has approved a stock buyback program on Thursday, October 26th that authorizes the company to repurchase $160.00 million in outstanding shares. This repurchase authorization authorizes the restaurant operator to repurchase up to 14.9% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase programs are typically a sign that the company’s management believes its stock is undervalued.

A number of equities analysts have commented on SONC shares. Zacks Investment Research raised Sonic from a “sell” rating to a “buy” rating and set a $26.00 price target on the stock in a research note on Wednesday, September 13th. Citigroup assumed coverage on Sonic in a research note on Monday, September 18th. They set a “buy” rating and a $28.00 target price on the stock. Oppenheimer reissued a “buy” rating and set a $29.00 target price on shares of Sonic in a research note on Friday, October 6th. Canaccord Genuity boosted their target price on Sonic from $24.00 to $25.00 and gave the company a “hold” rating in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. Finally, Cowen reissued a “neutral” rating on shares of Sonic in a research note on Tuesday, October 17th. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have issued a hold rating and five have issued a buy rating to the company’s stock. Sonic has an average rating of “Hold” and a consensus target price of $27.73.

In other news, Director Federico F. Pena sold 1,161 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Monday, October 23rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $25.20, for a total transaction of $29,257.20. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 1,187,659 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $29,929,006.80. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available at the SEC website. Also, Director Frank E. Richardson III sold 50,000 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Friday, December 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $27.62, for a total value of $1,381,000.00. Following the transaction, the director now directly owns 1,149,890 shares in the company, valued at $31,759,961.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 113,917 shares of company stock worth $3,014,116 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 6.24% of the company’s stock.

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Sonic 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.

Insider Buying and Selling by Quarter for Sonic (NASDAQ:SONC)

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