McDonald’s Shares Rise, Rumors Ensue

(Chicago Tribune/MCT) -

Shares of McDonald’s Corp. jumped as much as 2.7 percent on Monday afternoon, the biggest percentage gain in months for the world’s largest restaurant company, amid social-media speculation that a major investor might be eating up the shares.

Shares of McDonald’s rose as high as $97.30 on Monday afternoon, before ending the trading session at $96.22. Even with Monday’s pop, McDonald’s shares are down about 0.8 percent so far this year, as the hamburger chain deals with sales declines at its longstanding locations. The volume of shares traded was more than three times normal.

On Twitter, people speculated whether a large investor, particularly well-known activist investor Carl Icahn, might be interested in the stock. Oak Brook, Ill.-based McDonald’s said it was aware of the rumors and had nothing to share.

Among the messages on the social-media site, Mike Bergen, who calls himself a hedge-fund manager on his Twitter profile, sent this tweet to his 24,100 followers: “Are you lovin’ it @Carl — C — Icahn ? $MCD”

Icahn could not be immediately reached for comment on Monday afternoon. His own Twitter profile includes this description: “Some people get rich studying artificial intelligence. Me, I make money studying natural stupidity.”