Not every company is complaining about the weather.
Car parts seller AutoZone saw same-store sales increase 4.3% in the quarter ending February 15. Along with it came more spending; the company's revenues of $1.99 billion were 7.3% higher than the same quarter in 2012 and were about $26 million higher than analysts expected.
CNBC's Jim Cramer thinks there are several reasons why the stock is a buy. On Squawk Box Wednesday, Cramer said:
"This stock's about to go up very big. This is a company that the people thought that the buyback was not going to be aggressive enough anymore. It's been aggressive all the time. Don't forget, they've actually shrunk the share count in half in the last five years…. It's been a huge winner and a stock I've been backing for a long time because the average age of the automobile is 12 years. AutoZone – time to buy… Best amangement in the industry, fabulously pro-shareholder, and doing incredibly well. AutoZone's $620 price target [by] Citi is going to happen before people realize."
However, Brian Nagel, Senior Equity Research Analyst for Oppenheimer & Co., is in no rush to buy up AutoZone stock.
"I'm neutral here," says Nagel on CNBC's Street Signs' Talking Numbers segment. "AutoZone is definitely one of the best-run companies in retail and in many ways it's a model for the retailers. But, I think the stock at this point is rather fairly valued."
AutoZone trades at about 15.3 times its forward 1-year earnings.
Ryan Detrick, Senior Technical Strategist at Schaeffer's Investment Research, is more upbeat on the stock based on the technicals.
"The charts look good," says Detrick, who notes that the stock has traded roughly sideways over the past three weeks. "Yesterday, on earnings, the shares went lower. It got the bears all excited and then, just as quickly, [AutoZone] finished off the [day's] lows. We call it a 'bear trap'. To me, that's a bullish sign… in that type pattern. I expect new all-time highs in the next maybe week or two. This one looks really good."
Though Nagel is neutral, he believes the stock may move up a little over the next few months but he doesn't see the stock as a standout.
"Near-term, it's probably going higher because, if anything else, the weather," says Nagel. "The really harsh weather we've seen across the country is definitely a positive for AutoZone because there's going to be a lot of people out there fixing their cars. You'll see sales improve here in the next couple of quarters. That could be a near-term positive but, as I look across retail, I think relatively speaking, AutoZone is fairly valued."
To see the full discussion on AutoZone with Nagel on the fundamentals and Detrick on the technicals, watch the video above.
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