Chipotle's Stock Tumbles To Cusp Of New Bear Market After Oppenheimer's Downbeat Outlook

By Tomi Kilgore Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Shares of Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. slumped 2.3% toward a four-month low in morning trade Tuesday, after Oppenheimer said the downside risk still remains too risky to get bullish despite the recent sharp selloff. The stock has tumbled 19.7% since closing at a 14-month high of $496.14 on May 16, putting it on the cusp of kicking off a new bear market. Many Wall Streeters define a bear market as a decline of at least 20% from a bull-market peak. Oppenheimer analyst Brian Bittner reiterated his perform rating on the fast-casual Mexican food chain, which he's had on the stock since Jan. 4, 2016. "We remain cautious, despite CMG's recent [near] 20% pullback," Bittner wrote in a note to clients. "Our analysis within highlights material risk to the [Wall] Street's post-2017 earnings power thesis--a requirement to justify current valuation." Chipotle is scheduled to report second-quarter results on July 25, with analysts expecting a second-straight quarter of same-store sales growth following five-straight quarters of declines, according to FactSet. The stock has gained 5.7% year to date, but was still down 1.1% over the past year, while the S&P 500 has climbed 14% over the past 12 months.

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