Natalie Parkinson
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Natalie Parkinson in Gainers & Losers,

McDonald's profit bolstered by all-day breakfast

McDonald's Corp. reported a jump in first-quarter profit that easily topped expectations as all-day breakfast continued to attract customers -- more evidence that the company's turnaround efforts are paying off.

Sales at McDonald's U.S. restaurants open at least 13 months rose 5.4%, topping the 4.6% clip analysts expected and slowing just slightly from the fourth quarter's strong 5.7% pace. All-day breakfast continued to power domestic sales, the company said. Meanwhile, international sales rose 5.2% from a year earlier, pushing global comparable-store sales 6.2% higher during the period.

Global comparable-store sales 6.2% higher during the period, aided by an extra day thanks to leap year. McDonald's has been betting big on China, looking to make it its No. 2 market. Sales at existing stores there rose 3.6% in the March quarter as the company recovered from a supplier problems and won customers and opened new restaurants.

In all for the quarter, McDonald's reported a profit of $1.1 billion, or $1.23 a share, up from $811.5 million, or 84 cents, a year earlier.

Revenue edged 0.9% lower to $5.9 billion. The decline was on account of adverse exchange rates that hurt international sales. Stripping out currency volatility, sales rose 3%.

Analysts had projected $1.16 in earnings per share on $5.82 billion in sales, according to Thomson Reuters.

I think shares will rise today.