July 23 - Hamburger chain Wendy's is selling off locations and beefing up menu items as fast-food growth slows down. Conway G. Gittens reports.
Wendy's is slimming down and that's your daily digit. 425 restaurants currently operated by the Wendy's company are being put up for sale to franchise owners. Wendy's can beef-up its profits by switching ownership -putting the burden on operating a location on the franchise owner. The second largest U.S. hamburger chain is also looking to improve its fortunes with additional menu items like the much-advertised Pretzel Bacon Cheeseburger, which comes with a higher price. And at the same time going after larger rival McDonald's with a value menu called Right Price, Right Size. But results this week may confirm U.S. consumers are less interested in hamburgers. Quarterly revenues rose only slightly from a year ago and sales at restaurants opened at least a year were up, but far shy of expectations. If you're an investor, the company's return to profits and a pledge earnings will grow stronger next year - may be more appetizing. The stock is up solidly following those quarterly results.