Restaurant Stock Winners, Losers: Panera

Panera Bread and Buffalo Wild Wings post strong financials -- although a closer look at the all-important same-store sales metric delivers a mixed plate.
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NEW YORK, N.Y. (

TheStreet

) --

Panera Bread

(PNRA)

and

Buffalo Wild Wings

(BWLD)

posted strong quarterly financials after the closing bell Tuesday. Both restaurant chains beat top- and bottom-line expectations -- although a closer look at the all-important same-store sales metric delivered a mixed plate of winners

and

losers.

Panera Bread's system-wide comparable same-store sales, or sales at stores open at least one year, grew 9.9% in the second quarter, year-over-year. The figure topped analysts' expectations for growth of 9%, and by the comps metric even outpaced sector leader

Chipotle Mexican Grill

(CMG) - Get Report

, which last week said its quarterly comps

grew 8.7% year-over-year

.

>> Chipotle Leading the Pack

Buffalo Wild Wings, meanwhile, said its comps actually

decreased

0.1% at company-owned restaurants last quarter, and 0.7% at franchised locations.

Earlier Tuesday, pizza purveyor

Domino's Pizza

(DPZ) - Get Report

disappointed investors with comps growth of 8.8%. Analysts had expected the key metric to come in around 10%.

>> Domino's Comps Not Tasty Enough

With the economy still very much in recovery mode and the jobs market stubbornly weak, consumers continue to be choosy about how they spend their limited discretionary funds. For fast food and fast-casual restaurant chains, that means the competition is stiffer than ever.

>> Consumer Confidence Swoons in Summer

Panera forecast EPS for the third and fourth quarters, and the full year, above Wall Street analysts' consensus call, a strong vote of self-confidence for the bakery-café chain. It also said it expects comps to grow as much as 6% in the current quarter and again in the fourth, and as much as 8% for 2010. That's higher than its previous outlook for full year comps growth up to 7.5%.

Buffalo Wild Wings did not offer specific comps guidance but said it now expects unit growth at the low end of its previously offered outlook, or 13%.

-- Reported by Miriam Marcus Reimer from New York.

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>>McDonald's Falters on Comps

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