NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of McDonald's Corp. (MCD) are down -1.13% to $101.20 on heavy trading volume following an announcement by President and CEO Don Thompson at an investor conference presentation today that the fast food chain will intensify commitment to the its customer-focused strategic framework - the Plan to Win - and other actions to enhance long-term shareholder value.
McDonald's plans to optimize its capital and ownership structures and scrutinize G&A spending, and expects to return $18 to $20 billion to shareholders between 2014 and 2016 through a combination of dividends and share repurchases, representing a 10% to 20% increase over the amount of cash returned between 2011 and 2013.
Also, they will refranchise at least 1,500 restaurants by the end of 2016, primarily in Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa and Europe, reflecting a more than 50% increase in refranchising activity compared with the prior three-year period.
They will additionally analyze G&A spending with the primary intent of reallocating resources to higher return initiatives and growth areas, including development of the company's global digital capabilities.
TheStreet Ratings team rates MCDONALD'S CORP as a Buy with a ratings score of A. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate MCDONALD'S CORP (MCD) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, expanding profit margins, good cash flow from operations and increase in stock price during the past year. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income."