McDonald’s Corp. underperformed yet again, reporting profit levels Friday below what Wall Street had anticipated along with sliding sales this month.
Net income was down 3.5% to $1.45 billion, or $1.43 a share, in the third quarter ended Sept. 30. A year earlier, the chain pulled in $1.5 billion, or $1.45 a share. In the previous quarter, profit slid 4.5% -- a rare decline.
Revenue in the third quarter was down slightly, 0.2%, to $7.2 billion. A comparison of same-store sales, which cancel out the volatility of opening and closing restaurants, showed a 1.9% increase. So far this month, however, the gauge is down, executives said.
In midday trading in New York on Friday, McDonald's stock was down 3.8%, or $3.53, to $89.33 a share.
Sure, it’s a tough economy. Consumers aren’t spending like they used to. Competition -- from reinvigorated fast food outlets and popular fast casual brands -- is thick.
McDonald’s said as much Friday while announcing its earnings, blaming “global economic, operating and competitive challenges.” But the chain also happens to be one of a rare cadre of restaurant companies that managed to thrive during the recession while rivals such as Burger King and Taco Bell were forced to cut back and revamp.