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Why Chipotle Is An Olympic High-Jumper

You don't have to be a stock-market genius to know that Chipotle's (NYSE:CMG) stock priced at a million dollars per share is no bargain, while Chipotle's stock priced at $0.50 per share may be the best deal in history, all else equal. Valuation is important -- it is the deciding factor behind any investment decision, or at least it should be. Thinking about such price extremes helps emphasize that the relationship between a company's share price and its intrinsic value is the absolute core of investing. We can talk about how much we like Chipotle's operations and growth prospects until the cows come home, but if its share price is more than what the company is worth, odds are it's not a good investment. The value equation already captures a firm's growth prospects and every other fundamental factor. You're probably getting a sense that we think Chipotle is overvalued, and you'd be mostly right. A better way of saying it is that we don't think the stock is…