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National business briefs

Published: Monday, Nov. 8 2010 8:58 p.m. MST

McDonald's revenue increases in October

OAK BROOK, Ill. (AP) — A Monopoly promotion and strong sales of core menu items like the Big Mac helped push a key revenue figure up 5.6 percent in the U.S. for McDonald's Corp. during October.

The world's biggest hamburger chain said Monday that revenue at restaurants open at least 13 months climbed 6.5 percent for the company.

This figure is a key indicator of a restaurant operator's health because it gauges results at existing restaurants rather than newly opened ones.

Rolls Royce workingto find engine problem

LONDON (AP) — Rolls Royce says it has made progress in finding the cause of the engine failures which have grounded Qantas' fleet of A380s, the world's newest and largest airliner.

It stopped short, however, of saying that its engineers had figured out what went wrong when an engine burst minutes into a flight from Singapore to Sydney last week.

The Rolls Royce Group PLC said in a statement Monday that the engines are being inspected in coordination with Airbus, jet companies and air authorities.

Amazon is expanding online retail empire

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon.com says it is buying Quidsi, the owner of Diapers.com and Soap.com, for $500 million in cash in a move to expand its online retail empire.

Amazon.com Inc. said Monday that Quidsi will continue to operate independently after the acquisition.

Amazon says it will also assume about $45 million in debt and other obligations as part of the deal. The acquisition is expected to close in December.

Amazon bought popular online shoe retailer Zappos.com, for $850 million last year.

German export surge fueling its recovery

BERLIN (AP) — German exports surged 22.5 percent in September, according to official data released Monday, which showed Europe's largest economy is recovering quickly but still depends largely on foreign demand for its industrial products.

The Federal Statistics Office said exports rose to 86.9 billion euros ($122.4 billion) from 70.9 billion euros in September 2009. Imports were up 18 percent on the year to 70.1 billion euros, the agency based in Wiesbaden said.

The resulting foreign trade surplus of 16.8 billion euros was up from a surplus of 11.5 billion euros a year earlier.

"Despite fiscal consolidation in other eurozone countries and slower global demand, products 'made in Germany' remain a bestseller," said ING economist Carsten Brzeski.

The German government recently more than doubled its growth forecast for 2010 and raised its estimate of tax income.

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