McDonald’s sales boosted by $1 soda and 2 for $5 deals

Joseph Pisani
Associated Press

New York — Cheap soda and burgers helped bring more people into McDonald’s.

The fast-food company said Tuesday that sales in the U.S. rose 4.1 percent at existing locations during the third quarter, thanks to $1 drinks and its two for $5 promotion called McPick 2. McDonald’s also said pricier burgers, which are stuffed with crispy onions, kale or guacamole, helped boost sales, too.

McDonald’s, based in Oak Brook, Illinois, has been working to modernize its restaurants by adding mobile ordering and offering delivery through the UberEats app. It’s also been tinkering with its menu as more people shun processed foods: It removed artificial preservatives from its nuggets and it’s working to use fresh beef in its Quarter Pounder burgers.

“We’re building a better McDonald’s and more customers are noticing,” said CEO Steve Easterbrook.

Overall, the company reported net income of $1.88 billion, or $2.32 per share, in the three months ended Sept. 30. That’s up from $1.28 billion, or $1.50 per share, in the same period a year ago. Adjusted earnings came to $1.76 per share, a penny above what analysts expected, according to Zacks Investment Research.

Revenue fell 10 percent to $5.75 billion, missing analyst expectations of $5.8 billion. The company said it brought in less revenue as it switches more stores from company-owned restaurants to ones owned by franchisees, especially in China and Hong Kong.

Shares of McDonald’s Corp., which are up 34 percent since the beginning of the year, rose $2.27 to $165.52 in early trading Tuesday.