McDonald's Corp. said on Wednesday that it has raised $6.5 billion in cash in the debt markets during the first quarter. That includes $2 billion of debt issuances, a $1 billion draw down from a new short-term line of credit and an additional $3.5 billion of bonds issued. The company also has $3.5 million available under a committed line of credit that it hasn't touched. McDonald's expects to report $40 million in costs to cancel its Worldwide Owner/Operator Convention and $35 million in costs related to reducing technology investments. The company is scheduled to report first-quarter earnings on April 30. The fast-food giant has suspended its share repurchase program, plans for fewer new restaurant openings and will lower its capital expenditures by about $1 billion by reducing the Experience of the Future projects across the U.S. The Experience of the Future is McDonald's program for upgrading its restaurants with new technology and redesigns. McDonald's has withdrawn its 2020 outlook, and Chief Executive Chris Kempczinski has halved his base salary from April 15 to September 30. Other named executives have reduced their base salaries by 25%. Three-quarters of McDonald's restaurants around the world are operational, the company said, but many are takeaway, delivery or drive-thru only. In the U.S., 99% are operating as of April 8. January and February same-store sales rose 7.2%, but sharply declined in March, down 22.2%. For the quarter ending March 31, same-store sales fell 3.4%. McDonald's is working with franchisees on relief measures such as deferring rent and royalties. McDonald's stock is down 7.3% over the past year while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has fallen 13% for the period.
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