Burger King's income rises

By Anastasia Tomazhenkova: Burger King Holdings Inc, the second-largest U.S. hamburger chain, posted quarterly profit rose 29 percent as discount menus and late-night hours attracted more customers. The shares gained the most ever in New York trading.

The chain of restaurants posted second-quarter net income increased to 49 million dollars, or 36 cents a share, from 38 million dollars, or 28 cents, a year earlier.Revenue in the three months ended Dec. 31 climbed 9.7 percent to 613 million dollars, also exceeding projections.

Sales at U.S. and Canadian restaurants open at least 13 months rose 4.2 percent in the quarter. Chief Executive Officer John W. Chidsey, on a conference call with analysts today, projected "accelerated'' growth this month. Larger rival McDonald's Corp. forecast January U.S. same-store sales growth of 1.5 percent as consumers contend with a slowing economy.

Analysts on average were looking for earnings excluding items of 33 cents per share on revenue of 598.7 million dollars.

"We succeeded in a challenging macroenvironment with marketing initiatives that drove increased sales and traffic," Chidsey said in a statement.

McDonald's on Monday reported that its U.S. same-stores were flat in December, the lowest monthly level in nearly five years, due in part to severe winter weather.

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