Quick-service restaurants operator CKE Restaurants, Inc. (CKR) Wednesday reported a 2.7% decline in its period two blended same-store sales for the four weeks ended on March 23, which compares to a 2.4% rise in the same period last year.

The company attributed lower same-store sales to an ongoing deep discounting of low-quality menu items by its competitors, which negatively impacted sales at both Carl's Jr. and Hardee's brands. Total consolidated revenue for the brands was $86.8 million in the period.

Carl's Jr.'s period two same-store sales were down 7%, compared with a 6% rise a year ago. Carl's Jr. rolled over the most difficult sales comparison of the year and transitioned into a new product offering during the latter half of the period, the company noted. Carl's Jr.'s period two consolidated revenue from company-operated restaurants was $49.2 million.

CKE Restaurants said it is working diligently to get Carl's Jr. back on the positive same store sales track, although California's poor economic condition, which is worse than most other states, makes growing sales difficult at this time.

Hardee's reported a 3.1% rise in period two same-store sales versus a 2.1% decline in the previous year. Hardee's consolidated revenue from company-operated restaurants totaled $37.6 million in the period.

For the year-to-date period, Carl's Jr. reported same-store sales decline of 5.3% compared with 3.8% growth a year ago. Hardee's same-store sales rose 3.2%, while it dropped 0.2% last year. Blended same-store sales slid 1.7% versus 1.9% growth in the previous year.

At the end of the fourth quarter in January, CKE Restaurants, through its subsidiaries, had 3,116 franchised or company-operated restaurants, including 1,195 Carl's Jr. restaurants and 1,908 Hardee's restaurants.

The company is expected to report same-store sales results for period three ending April 20 on or about April 29.

CKR is currently trading at $8.53, up $0.13, on a volume of 54,011 shares.

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