Chipotle’s (NYSE:CMG) has been one of the market’s proverbial hot tamales in 2019. But in front of next week’s earnings conditions, a cooling off is needed before investors take a bite or nibble of Chipotle stock.
It has been a tough week for CMG bulls. Well, kind of … Chipotle stock has shed 3.40% through Wednesday’s close compared to the S&P 500’s much milder 0.25% dip. But don’t cry for Chipotle investors just yet.
Shares of CMG are up 50% in 2019 versus 15% for the broader-based average. And that’s on top of a sizzling 57% gain in 2018. Further, with CMG stock just 11% removed from its all-time-highs set in 2015, it would be hard to make the case for the bulk of investors regretting their purchases.
But an order of buyer’s remorse for Chipotle stock could be coming off the menu that’s backed by this week’s downgrade from overweight to equal weight by Morgan Stanley.
Analyst John Glass was behind the investment firm’s downgrade in CMG shares. At the same time, Chipotle’s well-below price target of $617 was lifted to a closer-to-the-action $658. Mr. Glass cited CMG’s rally as having gone up too far, too fast and shares being close to his bull-case valuation, which could still take a couple of years to play out.
I’m not 100% on-board with Morgan Stanley regarding the next two to three years. Nevertheless, right now, the Chipotle stock chart is strongly implying it’s time for bulls to finally ring the register, with the intention to place another well-served order shortly.
Chipotle Stock Weekly Chart
I’ve been a staunch Chipotle stock advocate and shareholder for some time. Most recently and following last quarter’s earnings report, my view was still an unequivocally bullish one, promoting CMG’s breakout at the time as being 110% “for real.”
But I’m taking a step away from Chipotle through the earnings event before revisiting the stock and making any fresh buying decisions.
The fact is bulls and bears make money, but pigs get slaughtered more often than not. And with the CMG stock chart graciously trumping a targeted zone of $650 – $700 from a corrective W-shaped base breakout and weekly stochastics extremely overbought, the risks in continuing to own CMG stock are elevated in the near term.
And with CMG’s earnings reaction being a typically volatile affair, you don’t have to be one of Chipotle’s still top-heavy legion of bears or critics to lock in and say thanks to Chipotle stock’s fast fresh price action and happily wait for more opportune prices before placing your order.
Disclosure: Investment accounts under Christopher Tyler’s management recently exited Chipotle stock (CMG) and/or its derivatives, but still love ordering takeout from Chipotle. The information offered is based upon Christopher Tyler’s observations and strictly intended for educational purposes only; the use of which is the responsibility of the individual. For additional options-based strategies and related musings, follow Chris on Twitter @Options_CAT and StockTwits.
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