Jan. 23 - McDonald's sales rise to $4.59 billion in the fourth quarter thanks to an unexpected December spike in U.S. sales. Conway G. Gittens reports.
The Daily Digit today is $4.59 billion. That's McDonald's global sales figure for the fourth quarter of last year. The number includes an unexpected December spike at established U.S. restaurants, which helped lift the fast-food giant's fourth-quarter profits above analysts' estimates. The trick was to open on Christmas and shift the limited-time offering of its popular McRib sandwich to the last month of the year. Fourth-quarter global sales at restaurants open at least 13 months were up 0.1%. Not bad, taking into consideration that analysts on average had anticipated a decline. The world's largest restaurant chain is facing heavy-weight competition from rivals Burger King and Yum Brands, in a tough fight for penny-pinching consumers. In fact, Mickey D's says it expects global same-store sales to be down in January.