Has McDonald’s turned the corner?

MCDONALD’S sales edged up at established U.S. locations during the third quarter, snapping a streak of about two years of quarterly declines.

The world’s largest burger chain also said sales rose 4 per cent on a global basis at established locations. In the U.S., the figure rose 0.9 per cent, marking the first increase since the third quarter of 2013. The bump was the result of a higher average check, however, which offset a decline in traffic. That means McDonald’s still has a long way to go in fixing its business.

The company said it expects the sales figure to rise globally for the final three months of the year as well, including in the U.S.

Its shares jumped sharply and struck an all-time high in early trading.

McDonald’s attributed the U.S. sales uptick in the period to improved service and menu changes as it works on reversing declining customer visits. Tweaks to food preparation included toasting buns longer and searing burgers to make them juicier. For its Egg McMuffins, the company switched back to butter and regular English muffins, instead of margarine and whole grain muffins.

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