You don't need to know a weatherman to know which way the wind blows...
Just ask Dunkin' Donuts' (NASDAQ:DNKN) CEO Nigel Travis. Listen to his comments on Friday's J.P. Morgan Forum (and by the way, he plugs SeekingAlpha.com's thoughts about weather and restaurant sales):
But I think I would say that this is probably -- we haven't had the huge depths of snow that we had 2 years ago in the Northeast, but we've had more regular storms. It seems that we've have a storm every week. So I'd say it's probably similar to 2011 and I've never worked it out but I'd say that 150 basis points probably goes back the other way.
For those of you not living in the Northeast - the home of so many Dunkin' Donuts - Winter 2013 has been a horrible unending series of snowstorms. I've been hitched up to my snow blower. In contrast, the comparable 2012 quarter was one of the mildest winters on record, making for some difficult comparisons.
We are going against the quarter last year, where we had exceptionally good weather for our business. So we always said this quarter was going to be a challenge.
Indeed. Not too many New Englanders got their coffee and donuts in 2-foot blizzards.
Perhaps, the analysts following Dunkin' Donuts live in sunnier climes. You'd think that after looking at their rosy EPS and revenue forecasts. Consensus expects an optimistic EPS of 29 cents versus 25 cents in the year-ago quarter. Revenue is forecast at $161.78 million, 6% higher than a year ago. Notice estimates haven't budged over the last 90 days despite the miserable winter. Those analysts must really be enjoying that Florida sunshine!
This winter's dismal weather report might be a better forecaster of Dunkin' Donuts' quarter than a roomful of analysts. Before you push the DD eject button, remember that awful New England winters don't come every year. In fact, the weather's become lovely...
I'd take the recent pull-back in Dunkin' as an opportunity to get in the stock before the snow melts.
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