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Darden sales slip, EPS beats

The parent of Olive Garden, Red Lobster and LongHorn Steakhouse reported an 18% decline in Q3 EPS to $1.02, 1 cent more than analysts expected. Darden Restaurants' (DRI) revenue climbed 5% to $2.26 bil, slightly under views. Same-store sales declined 4.6% collectively at its 3 main chains as it struggled with bad weather and tough competition. Darden reaffirmed its '13 forecast of $3.06- $3.22 per share. Analysts expect $3.16. Shares rose 1.4% to 49.62.