McDonald's Sales Make Huge Comeback

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Oakbrook, Illinois-McDonald's Corp.'s sales jumped a whopping 22.6 percent in February over last year's numbers, the fast-food chain said, extending a recovery that began last spring and sending its stock to a nearly two-year high.

Comparable sales from McDonald's-brand restaurants worldwide, reflecting results from outlets open more than a year, were a better-than-expected 13.9 percent in a key measure of the strength of McDonald's comeback.

The hamburger giant's 13,000-plus U.S. restaurants had the best showing, with comparable sales up 20 percent. Analysts and the company credited a combination of factors for the especially large U.S. gain: new products introduced since February 2003, less discounting, additional hours, the weak dollar and an extra day because of leap year. -Associated Press