business news in context, analysis with attitude

  • Inc. reported a second-ever quarterly net profit of $2.6 million, compared a with a net profit of $5 million. The company explained that while this was a drop, its fourth quarter on a pro forma basis more than doubled to a profit of $75 million, compared with $35 million a year earlier. The online retailer's fourth quarter sales rose 28 percent, to $1.43 billion from $1.12 billion a year earlier. Analysts had forecast revenue of $1.39 billion.

    Full-year revenues for 2002 rose 26 percent to $3.93 billion.

  • Starbucks Corp. said first quarter earnings were $80 million, compared with $68.4 million in the year-earlier quarter. This included a one-time gain of $13.4 million from the listing of a Japanese affiliate.

    Revenues for the quarter were $1 billion, up 25 percent from $805 million a year earlier. Same-store sales were up 9 percent in the quarter.

  • As expected, McDonald's Corp. posted its first-ever quarterly loss, a larger-than-expected $344 million, compared to a profit of $271.9 million a year earlier.

    Revenues were $3.9 billion, up 3 percent from $3.77 billion, but sales at restaurants open at least a year were down slightly in both the United States and Europe,

    The results included $810 million in charges for restaurant closings and other write-offs.

    For the full year, net earnings were $893.5 million, down 45 percent from $1.64 billion in 2001. Revenues rose 4 percent to $15.41 billion from $14.87 billion, although sales for restaurants open at least a year were off 2.1 percent.

KC's View: