McDonald’s saw a 6% drop in third quarter earnings to $735.4m (£416.3m), but reported signs of a recovery. The results for the comparative period last year were boosted by a tax benefit. Revenue rose 8% to $5.33bn, with sales at restaurants open at least 13 months, or same-store sales, up 4.1%. Sales in Europe, where recovery has been slow, in part due to economic weakness in Germany, were up 6.6%. However, products such as the premium Big Tasty hamburger in Germany and the lower-priced Les Petit Plaisir chicken sandwich in France buoyed sales. Several analysts raised concerns over margins in the US, as same store sales fell back and costs of utilities rose. Matt Paull, the company’s chief financial officer, said: "There are several areas of the world where margins and returns are well below historical highs and below our targets. Our entire management team is focused on improving these results."