McDonald’s Q3 Earnings: Higher Prices Helped Lift US Sales

McDonald’s said on Thursday that its sales in the United States rose in the third quarter, as consumers paid more for their burgers and fries, the latest in a number of companies that have managed to increase prices without seeing a drop in demand.

The fast-food chain’s sales in the U.S. rose 6.1 percent for the three months through September, compared to the same period a year ago. Profit at the company decreased, however, largely because the strength of the U.S. dollar hurt its overseas earnings.

McDonald’s results followed a batch of positive earnings reports from companies that have raised prices without affecting demand. On Tuesday, Coca-Cola reported better-than-expected earnings that were largely credited to higher prices.
Chipotle Mexican Grill also said its profit margin widened last quarter, as it managed to increase the prices it charges faster than its own costs rose. The company said its prices in the final three months of the year would be nearly 15 percent higher than they were a year earlier.

Earlier this month, the consumer-products giants Procter & Gamble and Nestlé also said they increased prices significantly, but sales volumes were lower.

Shares of McDonald’s, which are down 1.8 percent since the beginning of the year, rose 2.6 percent at the beginning of trading on Thursday.