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Stick with Shack? Burger joint disappoints on earnings

Shares of Shake Shack fell more than 6% on Thursday following a disappointing earnings report.

While the burger joint beat top and bottom line estimates, slower-than-expected sales growth sent shares tumbling.

Headwinds continue to plague the stock, which has fallen 44% over the past year.

Despite crowds at Shake Shack's New York locations, some analysts worry the fast food chain will not be able to achieve comparable growth as it looks to expand its national footprint.

Pedestrians pass by a Shake Shack restaurant in Chicago.
Getty Images
Pedestrians pass by a Shake Shack restaurant in Chicago.

Competition in the fast food industry is also fierce. And while the U.S. consumer has been spending more, their dollars haven't been directed at dining out.

Grocery stores have been raising prices at a slower rate than restaurants, prompting consumers to eat more meals at home.

But despite Shake Shack's troubles, one research firm believes the stock's drop is an attractive entry point.

SunTrust upgraded the stock to a buy from neutral today, and increased its price target for the New York-based company to $48 from $45.

The analyst behind the call -- Jake Bartlett -- joined the "Halftime Report" experts to debate whether you should buy Shake Shake's dip, or if the stock will test new lows.

Bartlett argues that Shake Shack's same-store sales miss isn't actually that big of a deal since it's not the company's most important metric.

"The real driver of the value for Shake Shack is unit growth. It's not really a same-store sale story. What we learned yesterday was that their unit targets have now increase for the fourth quarter in a row," he said.

Also driving Bartlett's upgrade is the stock's falling forward valuation.

"In our view Shake Shack is coming to what we term as an investable zone...we're at a point where the multiple as it stands right now is roughly 25 x EBITDA...it's not the most expensive any more...it's in a realm where you can compare it to other companies," he argued.

Trader disclosure: On August 12, 2016 the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC's "Halftime Report" were owned by the "Halftime Report" traders:

Steve Weiss: Long AAL,ADC, ATVI, CAVM, FIS, HZNP, SRPT, TWTR, VXX

Joe Terranova: Long VRTS

Jon Najarian: Long calls AAPL, BYD, DB, DLPH, GLD, GPRO, HFC, HOLX, IP, KATE, LGF, LVS, M, MAS, MRO, MSFT, PAAS, PSX, SLW, TASR, TJX, TWTR, WTW, WYNN, VLO, XON

Yana Barton: AMZN, COST, SFM, HD, NKE, SBUX, FB, GOOGL, AAPL, CRM, MSFT, TWTR, BRCM, PANW, AGN, CELG, GILD, BMY, BIIB, VRTX, INCY