The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated CAKE reported mixed third-quarter fiscal 2019 results, wherein earnings surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate but revenues missed the same. While the bottom line outpaced the consensus mark for the third straight quarter, the top line missed the same for the fifth consecutive quarter.
In the quarter under review, adjusted earnings came in at 59 cents per share, outpacing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 54 cents. However, the bottom line declined 7.8% from the prior-year quarter number.
Let’s take a closer look at the numbers.
Detailed Revenue Discussion
Total revenues of $586.5 million in the reported quarter missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $594 million. However, the top line improved 2% year over year on the back of increased comparable sales.
Comps at Cheesecake Factory restaurants increased 0.4% compared with growth of 1.5% in the year-ago quarter.
The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated Price, Consensus and EPS Surprise
The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated price-consensus-eps-surprise-chart | The Cheesecake Factory Incorporated Quote
Costs in Detail
Cost of sales ratio decreased 30 bps year over year to 22.7% in the third quarter. Meanwhile, the labor expense ratio was 36.4%, up 100 bps from the year-ago quarter.
Other operating costs were 25.5% of revenues, up 100 bps from the year-ago quarter. General and administrative (G&A) expenses accounted for 6.8% of revenues, up 30 bps from the prior-year quarter. Notably, pre-opening expenses decreased 20 bps year over year to 0.4% in the third quarter.
As of Oct 1, 2019, Cheesecake Factory’s cash and cash equivalents totaled $306.3 million compared with $26.6 million as of Jan 1, 2019.
In third-quarter 2019, the company repurchased approximately 263,000 shares of its common stock for $11.4 million. In 2018, Cheesecake Factory bought back approximately 2.3 million shares of common stock for $109.3 million.
The company’s board of directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of 36 cents per share of the common stock. The new dividend is payable Nov 26, 2019, to its shareholders of record at the close of business on Nov 12, 2019.
In fiscal 2019, Cheesecake Factory anticipates opening five Cheesecake Factory restaurants, which includes the inauguration of one in Gainesville, FL during the third quarter.
For the fourth quarter, adjusted earnings per share are estimated to be 61-66 cents based on anticipated comps growth of 0.5-1.5% at Cheesecake Factory restaurants. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for fourth-quarter earnings is pegged at 62 cents.
Fiscal 2019 Guidance
For the fiscal year, Cheesecake Factory expects earnings of $2.65-$2.70 per share compared with of $2.58-$2.68 projected earlier. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2019 earnings is pegged at $2.61, below the mid-point of the company’s guided range. Meanwhile, the company expects comps to grow 1%, compared with earlier estimate of 1-1.5%.
Zacks Rank & Stocks to Consider
Cheesecake Factory carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).
Some better-ranked stocks worth considering in the same space include Brinker International, Inc. EAT, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. CMG and Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. CBRL. All these stocks carry a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Brinker International’s earnings have surpassed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the four trailing quarters, the average being 4.4%.
Chipotle Mexican Grill and Cracker Barrel Old Country Store has an impressive long-term earnings growth rate of 18.4% and 10%, respectively.
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