McDonald’s top fast-food stock in 2020: Market expert
Morningstar senior restaurant and retail strategist R.J. Hottovy says plant-based food as well as a possible chicken sandwich will drive McDonald’s higher in 2020.
Despite McDonald’s CEO being ousted in November, the fast-food giant wrapped up the tumultuous year on a high note.
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In 2019, the "Golden Arches" surpassed $100 billion in annual sales for the first time and notched its highest sales for stores open at least a year in more than a decade, with growth in all of its global regions, the company announced in January.
McDonald’s Corp., whose worth hovers around $163 billion, saw its net income rise 11 percent to $1.6 billion within the last three months of 2019, President and CEO Chris Kempczinski said.
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During that same time period, sales at restaurants open at least 13 months rose 5 percent, which Kempczinski noted was driven by higher prices and delivery. According to Forbes, most of the corporation's revenue is generated from the United States market, which is the company’s first and largest segment.
Delivery was a big driver of the gains this year. Delivery is now available at 25,000 restaurants worldwide and brought in $4 billion in sales. The company added DoorDash as a U.S. partner in July, ending its exclusive partnership with UberEats. It partnered with GrubHub in September.
However, Kempczinski said it’s critical for McDonald’s to perform better at breakfast since that’s the only time of day U.S. restaurant traffic is growing. McDonald’s is also facing increased competition as other heavy hitters in the fast-food industry continue to beef up their breakfast offerings.
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The chain is also fighting to compete in the highly publicized chicken sandwich wars. The fast-food behemoth is testing a crispy chicken sandwich in some markets and is preparing to launch two new chicken-based breakfast sandwiches.
McDonald’s plans to open 1,400 new restaurants this year, including 450 in China. Almost all of those restaurants will be outside the U.S. McDonald’s has 38,695 restaurants worldwide; 13,846 are in the U.S.
Kempczinksi became president and CEO in November after former President and CEO Steve Easterbrook was ousted for violating company policy by having a consensual relationship with an employee.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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