The analysts following Cracker Barrel Old Country Store have been busy of late hiking their numbers following the company's strong earnings report last month. The latest is John Staszak at Argus Research, who on Tuesday lifted his price target for the Lebanon-based restaurant and retail chain (Ticker: CBRL) to $88 from $78. But Rich Smith at The Motley Fool thinks the Street and investors are getting ahead of themselves a bit.
I was a bit ambivalent when Miller Tabak endorsed Cracker Barrel last week, because at 15.7 times earnings, but only 10% projected long-term earnings growth, the stock looked overvalued to me. Today, Argus is both arguing for a higher price target ($88 versus $81) and saying Cracker Barrel will get there from a higher starting point (16.3 times earnings versus 15.7). Needless to say, Argus is setting itself a higher hurdle on this one, and one more difficult to clear.