- Business Insider
- Chipotle’s third-quarter earnings per share missed analysts’ estimates. The company noted that its earnings were impacted by recent hurricanes, but its release made no mention of the mixed reviews its queso got. Chipotle’s stock fell to a near five-year low in premarket trading.
Chipotle on Tuesday reported third-quarter earnings that missed analysts’ forecasts following recent hurricanes and costs related to a data breach.
The fast-casual chain reported earnings per share of $0.69 and adjusted EPS of $1.33, missing analysts’ forecast for $1.63 according to Bloomberg. Revenue totaled $1.13 billion, missing the estimate for $1.14 billion. Sales at stores open for at least one year rose 1% (1.2% forecast).
Chipotle also lowered its outlook for the year. It projected new restaurant openings in the low end of its previously announced range of 195-210. It now sees same-store sales growth of 6.5%, down from an older forecast for growth in the high single digits.
Ahead of the earnings release, analysts were focused on the mixed reviews of Chipotle’s newly introduced queso.
Last Friday, RBC’s David Palmer cut his price target on the stock to $330 from $400 on the expectation that queso and other marketing efforts would disappoint. He lowered his target by another $10 after the earnings release.
“Chipotle’s earnings power remains volatile as new initiatives like queso prove to be less incremental than expected, new unit returns slow (to 20% vs. 70% at peak), and profitability continues to erode due to rising labor costs,” Palmer said in a note.
Chipotle shares fell nearly 12% in premarket trading to $285.46, putting them on track to open at the lowest level in about five years.
Analysts were also looking out for the impact of a new norovirus outbreak in July on same-store sales, and any slowdown caused by hurricanes Harvey and Irma. The company has been working to win back customers after norovirus and E. coli outbreaks were linked to its food in 2015.
“Despite several unusual impacts during the quarter, including the impact of hurricanes, we maintained our focus and saw some encouraging signs,” Steve Ells, Chipotle’s CEO, said in a statement.
- Markets Insider