McDonald’s Corporation Stock Falls Despite Earnings Beat

McDonald's earnings q4 2017
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McDonald’s Corporation (NYSE:MCD) released its Q4 2017 earnings report before opening bell this morning. McDonald’s earnings came in at $1.71 per share on $5.3 billion in revenue. Analysts had been expecting earnings of $1.59 per share on $5.2 billion in sales. In the year-ago quarter, the fast food chain reported $6 billion in revenue.

McDonald’s earnings results driven by strong same store sales

On a GAAP basis, McDonald’s earnings came in at 87 cents per share, including a charge which amounted to 84 cents per share in connection with the tax reform bill. In the year-ago quarter, the company posted earnings of $1.44 per share.

McDonald’s said comparable store sales grew 5.5% year over year in Q4, which beat the consensus of a 4.9% increase. Systemwide sales grew 8% in constant currencies. U.S. comparable sales grew 4.5% year over year, driven by strong core menu performance for the McPick 2 platform and beverage value options. Customers also responded strongly to the Buttermilk Crispy Tenders and delivery option.

Comparable sales in the International Lead segment grew 6% as momentum in Canada and the U.K. continued. Comparable sales in the company’s High Growth market segment grew 4%, driven by strength in China and positive results in the rest of the markets except for South Korea, where challenges continued, Comparable sales in the Foundational markets segment jumped 8% as all geographic regions returned positive performances.

Investments planned for 2018

The McDonald’s earnings release also included details on investments planned for this year, which includes approximately $2.4 billion in capital. Most of that will be used to reinvest in existing locations as the company accelerates its deployment plans for the Experience of the Future in domestic stores. McDonald’s also plans to open about 1,000 new restaurants, of which 75% will be funded by developmental licensees and affiliates.

The fast food chain also plans to keep investing in technology to “modernize the customer experience and redefine convenience.”

Following the McDonald’s earnings release, the company’s stock slipped by less than 1% to as low as $177 in premarket trades.