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Jack in the Box


shares jumped Wednesday after the fast-food chain reported strong second-quarter earnings and raised guidance.

The San Diego-based company earned $19.6 million, or 53 cents a share, in the quarter ended April 11, compared with $16.3 million, or 44 cents a share, a year ago. The consensus estimate was for 43 cents a share, according to Thomson First Call. Revenue jumped to $517.3 from $463.3 million, well above analysts' estimate of $507.2 million.

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Same-store sales increased 8.2%, the best in more than four years and a strong reversal from last year's 4.3% decline. Sales were driven by its new Pannido sandwiches and a Greek salad. The company attributed its surprisingly strong results to higher sales, cost leverage and lower-than-expected commodity costs, primarily for beef.

The company said it expects third-quarter EPS of approximately 53 cents and also increased its full-year EPS forecast to $1.99, including charges, vs. its previous estimate of $1.68.

The consensus estimates of analysts are for 45 cents and $1.93 a share, respectively.

Shares rose $1.14, or 4.2%, to $28.12 in premarket trading.