Wendy’s Co. shares rose 4.8% in Wednesday premarket trading after the fast-food chain reported first-quarter earnings that beat expectations and raised its guidance. Net income totaled $41.4 million, or 18 cents per share, up from $14.4 million, or 6 cents per share, last year. Adjusted EPS of 20 cents beat the FactSet consensus for 15 cents. Revenue of $460.2 million was up from $405.0 million last year and also ahead of the FactSet consensus for $445.0 million. Global same-restaurant sales rose 13% with the U.S. up 13.5% and international sales up 7.9%. The FactSet consensus was for global 14.5% growth with the U.S. up 12%. Wendy’s raised its dividend by 11% to 10 cents per share, payable on June 15, 2021 to shareholders of record as of June 1, 2021. As of May 5, there were 221 million shares outstanding. The company also raised its share repurchase plan by $50 million to a total of $150 million. And Wendy’s raised its full-year guidance. The company now expects adjusted EPS of 72 cents to 74 cents, and 8%-to-10% global systemwide sales growth. The company was previously guiding for 6%-to-8% sales growth. The FactSet consensus is for EPS of 69 cents and sales of $1.817 billion, implying 4.8% growth. Wendy’s stock has gained 4% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 10.5% for the period.

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