July 1 Goldman Sachs upgraded Yum Brands Inc
(YUM.N) to "buy" from "neutral" and said it had a more positive
view on the prospects for profit growth at the company's
Goldman analysts, including Steven Kron and Joseph Fischer,
also said they were more positive on the parent of the Taco
Bell, Pizza Hut and KFC chains' improving U.S. business and
overall corporate margins.
"Our upgrade reflects a longer-term view of a secular story
that we think investors should be behind, not because of the
next quarter, but because of the next couple of years," the
analysts wrote in a note to clients.
The analysts said while they were only marginally more
optimistic about the company's U.S. operations, more tangible
product platforms and greater focus on operational costs will
turn the business into a "profit grower instead of a perennial
Yum's overseas businesses, other than China, will likely
exceed the targeted 10 percent profit growth, as greater
visibility on the company's strategies will drive sustainable
and profitable growth, Goldman analysts said.
The analysts raised their price target on the stock to $40
Shares of the Louisville, Kentucky-based Yum closed at
$33.34 Tuesday on the New York Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Tenzin Pema in Bangalore; Editing by Anne