Tuesday’s Top Upgrades (and Downgrades): Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (CBRL), Texas Roadhouse Inc (TXRH), Aurizon Mines Ltd. Aurizon Mines Ltd. (USA) (AZK)

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Cracker Barrel (CBRL)This series, brought to you by Yahoo! Finance, looks at which upgrades and downgrades make sense, and which ones investors should act on. Today, our headlines feature downgrades for Texas Roadhouse Inc (NASDAQ:TXRH) and Aurizon Mines Ltd. (NYSEMKT:AZK) . But it’s not all bad news, so read on, and find out why one analyst thinks you should…

Fill up on Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBRL)
Another day, another higher price target for Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBRL) . Last week, we were talking about how the country store-cum-country cookin’ restaurant parlayed an $0.18-per-share “earnings beat” into a new $81 price target at analyst Miller Tabak. Today, analysts at Argus Research are going even further than that — reiterating their buy rating on the stock and predicting that before a year is out, Cracker Barrel shares will be fetching $88 apiece.

Now here’s the problem: I was a bit ambivalent when Miller Tabak endorsed Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBRL)¬†last week, because at 15.7 times earnings, but only 10% projected long-term earnings growth, the stock looked overvalued to me. Today, Argus is both arguing for a higher price target ($88 versus $81) and saying Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBRL)¬†will get there from a higher starting point (16.3 times earnings versus 15.7).

Needless to say, Argus is setting itself a higher hurdle on this one, and one more difficult to clear. (Worth saying, though, is that investors seem to recognize this, and are currently selling off Cracker Barrel shares despite Argus’s endorsement — a pretty clear case of “sell the news” if I ever saw one.)

My hunch: Cracker Barrel is fairly valued today. Maybe even a bit overvalued. That said, if you’re dead set on owning it, the workaround I described last week is still there for the taking. Biglari Holdings (NYSE:BH) , which owns a 20% stake in Cracker Barrel and sells for a cheaper price-to-free cash flow ratio, with a faster growth rate, offers a compelling way to buy a piece of Cracker Barrel’s growth without paying the sticker price on Cracker Barrel stock. I like it so much, I own it myself.

Don’t stop at Texas Roadhouse Inc (NASDAQ:TXRH)
Continuing today’s comfort-food theme, our second analyst recommendation today concerns Texas Roadhouse. Once again, it’s Miller Tabak stepping up to lend some advice. This time, however, Miller is feeling more cautious, downgrading TR to hold, and recommending investors be more cautious about the stock.

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