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Chipotle Surges Past $400

NEW YORK (TheStreet) - Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) surged 7% on Friday, crossing the $400 mark, as investors applauded the fast-casual burrito chain's solid second quarter earnings.

Chipotle shares were rising 7.1% to $403.39 at last check - the stock briefly hit $400 this time last year as well.

The Denver-based company said Thursday net income for the June-ending quarter rose 7.6% to $87.9 million compared to the year-earlier period. Chipotle's diluted earnings per share came in at $2.82, a penny higher than what Wall Street was expecting, and 10.2% higher than the year before.

Revenue for the quarter rose 18.2% to $816.8 million, surpassing analysts' expectations of $803 million. The company attributed the strong revenue growth to new stores opened - a total of 92 for the first half of the year and 1,502 stores overall.

Comparable restaurant sales of 5.5% came in higher than Wall Street expected.

Management moved the needle higher for its expectations for same-store sales in 2013, upping guidance from flat-to-low single-digits to low-to-mid-single digit growth.

One of the biggest question marks surrounding the company was when it would raise prices - a notion it's been hinting at for several quarters. During the earnings call, management took menu item price increases off the table at least for the next two quarters. "As a result of the relatively stable food cost and a longer term general forecast of a stable or perhaps even deflationary food cost we do not have any current plans to raise prices for the remainder of 2013," CFO Jack Hartung said.

Stock quotes in this article: CMG 

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