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VOL. 36 | NO. 20 | Friday, May 18, 2012




Higher prices push Cracker Barrel 3Q profit up

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LEBANON (AP) — Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc. said Tuesday that its fiscal third-quarter profit rose 25 percent thanks to higher prices and more customers.

The casual dining chain also raised its full-year earnings forecast above analysts' expectations, citing its year-to-date performance.

President and CEO Sandra Cochran said in a statement that Cracker Barrel's customer traffic improved for the second straight quarter. Menu prices rose about 2.4 percent on average, while the average check climbed 2.5 percent.

Cracker Barrel reported net income of $19 million, or 81 cents per share, for the three months ended April 27 compared with $15.2 million, or 64 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding severance costs and other items, earnings were 86 cents per share.

This easily beat the 75 cents per share that analysts polled by FactSet expected.

Revenue rose 5 percent to $608.5 million from $582.5 million, but missed Wall Street's estimate of $609.4 million.

Revenue at restaurants open at least a year increased 3.1 percent. This figure is a key gauge of a restaurant operator's performance because it excludes results from stores recently opened or closed.

The Lebanon, Tenn., company now expects fiscal 2012 adjusted earnings of $4.35 to $4.45 per share. It previously predicted adjusted earnings of $4.20 to $4.35 per share. Cracker Barrel maintained its revenue guidance of $2.55 billion to $2.6 billion. Analysts predict full-year earnings of $4.31 per share on revenue of $2.56 billion.

For fiscal 2013, the chain anticipates earnings between $4.50 and $4.70 per share. Wall Street foresees $4.62 per share.

Cracker Barrel runs 615 company-owned locations in 42 states. Its shares finished at $58.13 per share on Monday.

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FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 0 0
BUILDING PERMITS 0 0 0
BANKRUPTCIES 0 0 0
BUSINESS LICENSES 0 0 0
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 0 0 0
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