The restaurant biz can be a tough gig, and not just for the harried staffers. Today, CBRL Group
As usual, the firm is at the whim of fickle American eaters, who've delivered some anemic comps for the past couple of months. That might not look too bad, considering that countrified breakfast peer Bob Evans Farms
But keep in mind, as an absolute benchmark, low single-digit comps are nothing to write home about, not when burger-slinging McDonald's
CBRL Group is one of those stocks that has defied gravity over the past nine months despite its relative mediocrity. It trades at a P/E of around 19, on par with other restaurants in its league. Free cash flow is nothing to write home about. Top-line growth is in the slim, under-10% range, even when things are going well. The bottom line has fared a bit better and is expected to grow in the mid-teens. But how much do you want to pay for slow and steady?
By my tally, it looks fairly priced -- if not a bit rich -- but that was how it looked a while back, too. There are worse places to be than predictable favorites like Cracker Barrel, but value-minded investors probably won't find the firm too enticing.
For related Foolishness, see:
- How does IHOP stack up?
- Barbecue is hot; the fish, not.
- A few months back, the barrel also looked half full.
Seth Jayson has been known to slake his hankerings at Cracker Barrel. At the time of publication, he had no positions in any company mentioned. View his stock holdings and Fool profile here. Fool rules are here.