Owner of Hardee's, Carl's Jr. Posts Loss

CKE Restaurants Inc. (CKR), which runs the Carl's Jr. (search) and Hardee's (search) fast-food chains, on Monday posted a second-quarter net loss due to one-time charges for lawsuits and debt retirement.

The Carpinteria, Calif.-based company, whose stock fell in premarket trading, reported a net loss of $11.4 million, or 20 cents per share, for the fiscal second quarter ended Aug. 9, compared with a year-earlier profit of $6.3 million, or 11 cents per share.

Excluding charges of $7 million to settle three related wage-and-hour class-action lawsuits and $12.5 million related to retirement of debt and other matters, CKE said it had a profit of $10.8 million, or 17 cents per share, in the latest quarter.

On that basis, analysts polled by Reuters Estimates on average forecast earnings of 20 cents per share.

CKE said sales at company-operated restaurants open at least a year, a closely watched figure in the industry, rose 8.1 percent at Carl's Jr. for the quarter, helped by new products such as the Loaded Breakfast Burrito (search).

Hardee's same-store sales climbed 6.2 percent, benefiting from the introduction of the Western Bacon Thickburger in the latter part of the quarter.

The company said beef costs rose in the second quarter after moderating for most of the first quarter.

Shares of CKE fell to $11.50 in premarket trade on the INET electronic brokerage system, down from a Friday close of $12.38 on the New York Stock Exchange (search).

CKE owns or franchises 3,206 restaurants, including 1,016 Carl's Jr., 2,067 Hardee's, and 105 La Salsa Fresh Mexican Grill (search).