Why Investors Are Hungry for McDonald’s Earnings

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McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD) released its third-quarter financial results before the markets opened on Tuesday. The golden arches said that it had $2.10 in earnings per share (EPS) and $5.37 billion in revenue, which compares with consensus estimates of $1.99 in EPS and $5.32 billion in revenue, as well as the $2.32 per share and $5.75 billion posted in the same period of last year.

During most recent the quarter, global comparable sales increased 4.2%, reflecting positive comparable sales in all segments. At the same time, systemwide sales increased 5% in constant currencies.

In terms of its segments, the company reported:

  • In the U.S., third quarter comparable sales increased 2.4%, driven by growth in average check resulting from both product mix shifts and menu price increases. Operating income for the quarter increased 3%.
  • In the International Lead segment, third quarter comparable sales increased 5.4%, reflecting positive results across all markets, primarily driven by the U.K., Australia and France. The segment’s operating income was flat (increased 3% in constant currencies).
  • In the High Growth segment, third quarter comparable sales increased 4.6%, led by strong performance in Italy and the Netherlands, and positive results across most of the segment. … The segment’s operating income decreased 5% (1% in constant currencies).
  • In the Foundational markets, third quarter comparable sales increased 6.0%, reflecting positive sales performance in Japan and across all geographic regions. The segment’s operating income increased 6% (12% in constant currencies).

McDonald’s did not offer any guidance in the release. However, the consensus estimates call for $1.88 in earnings per share (EPS) and $5.19 billion in revenue for the fourth quarter.

Steve Easterbrook, McDonald’s president and CEO, commented:

In addition to achieving 13 consecutive quarters of positive global comparable sales, we have made substantial progress modernising restaurants around the world, enhancing hospitality and elevating the experience for the millions of customers we serve every day. We remain confident that our strategy will drive long-term, profitable growth.

Shares of McDonald’s traded up 3% early Tuesday at $171.68, with a consensus analyst price target of $184.85 and a 52-week trading range of $146.84 to $178.70.

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