) -- Shares of
Burger King Holdings
pushed higher Tuesday morning after the fast food chain posted better-than-expected fourth-quarter profits.
Burger King booked earnings of $49 million, or 36 cents per share, beating expectations for profits of $45.8 million, or 34 cents per share. Still, results were sharply lower than year-earlier profits of $58.9 million, or 43 cents per share.
While earnings topped Wall Street's expectations, Burger King's quarterly revenue came up short as global comparable same-store sales, or sales at stores open at least one year, fell 0.7%. Comps at U.S. and Canadian locations fell 1.5%.
Burger King's performance was pressured by stubbornly high rates of young, jobless males in the U.S., Citi analyst Gregory R. Badishkanian said in an appearance on
Burger King said it plans to open between 225 and 275 net new restaurants in fiscal 2011, over 90% of which will be outside the U.S. and Canada.
is also looking to expand abroad.
Last week McDonald's said it
. McDonald's was the first non-financial multinational company to issue a yuan-denominated bond in China after the country began allowing its currency to be used for cross-border trade last year, though others may be looking to follow suit. Reports indicate that
may follow the fast-food purveyor's lead with its own offering.
Burger King's fourth-quarter comps were positive in some areas of the world, with a 0.2% gain in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia/Pacific led by strength in Spain, Turkey, Australia, New Zealand and Korea. Comps growth of 3.9% in Latin America was driven by the strength in Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay and El Salvador.
Sales outside the U.S. and Canada made up 31.5% of Burger King's total revenues in the quarter.
A roster of fast casual restaurants also reported quarterly results recently, offering up a mixed bag of same-store sales results.
McDonald's said comps surged 7% in July, fueled in large part by its beverage business. It was the burger-and-fries chain's biggest monthly increase by that measure since April of 2009. The Golden Arches said it
, helped by its dollar menu and an expanded list of coffee drinks, but the figure came up short of expectations.
said system-wide same-store sales at Wendy's restaurants decreased 1.7% in its fiscal second quarter, ended July 4, while comps at Arby's fell 7.4%.
Chipotle Mexican Grill
reported an 8.7% jump in year-over-year comps.
Shares of Burger King rose 0.8% in morning trading Tuesday while McDonald's lost 0.8%.
--Written by Miriam Marcus Reimer in New York.
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