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Buy Recommendation Reiterated For McDonald's Corporation

Editor's Note: Any reference to TheStreet Ratings and its underlying recommendation does not reflect the opinion of TheStreet, Inc. or any of its contributors including Jim Cramer or Stephanie Link.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- McDonald's Corporation (NYSE: MCD) has been reiterated by TheStreet Ratings as a buy with a ratings score of A. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, growth in earnings per share, good cash flow from operations, expanding profit margins and largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • Despite its growing revenue, the company underperformed as compared with the industry average of 4.6%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 2.4%. This growth in revenue appears to have trickled down to the company's bottom line, improving the earnings per share.
  • MCDONALD'S CORP's earnings per share improvement from the most recent quarter was slightly positive. The company has demonstrated a pattern of positive earnings per share growth over the past two years. We feel that this trend should continue. During the past fiscal year, MCDONALD'S CORP increased its bottom line by earning $5.36 versus $5.28 in the prior year. This year, the market expects an improvement in earnings ($5.60 versus $5.36).
  • Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $1,509.80 million or 1.80% when compared to the same quarter last year. Despite an increase in cash flow, MCDONALD'S CORP's average is still marginally south of the industry average growth rate of 7.13%.
  • 44.55% is the gross profit margin for MCDONALD'S CORP which we consider to be strong. Regardless of MCD's high profit margin, it has managed to decrease from the same period last year. Despite the mixed results of the gross profit margin, MCD's net profit margin of 19.71% compares favorably to the industry average.
  • MCD's debt-to-equity ratio of 0.88 is somewhat low overall, but it is high when compared to the industry average, implying that the management of the debt levels should be evaluated further. Regardless of the somewhat mixed results with the debt-to-equity ratio, the company's quick ratio of 1.28 is sturdy.

McDonald's Corporation franchises and operates McDonald's restaurants in the United States, Europe, the Asia/Pacific, the Middle East, Africa, Canada, and Latin America. Its restaurants offer various food items, soft drinks, coffee, and other beverages, as well as breakfast menus. McDonald's has a market cap of $97.7 billion and is part of the services sector and leisure industry. Shares are up 10.8% year to date as of the close of trading on Friday.

You can view the full McDonald's Ratings Report or get investment ideas from our investment research center.

--Written by a member of TheStreet Ratings Staff.

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