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For McDonald's Corporation (McDonald's) and Burger King Holdings, Inc. (Burger King), the three of the largest variable expenses for the years ended December 31, 2003 to 2005 and June 30, 2004 to 2006 are food and paper, payroll and employee benefits, and occupancy and other operating expenses (Burger King Holdings, Inc…

Introduction

For Burger King, food and paper for the three years ended June 30, 2004 to 2006 were $391 million, $437 million, and $470 million respectively, constituting 23.26%, 24.43%, and 25.03% of the total operating costs and expenses respectively (Burger King Holdings, Inc. a, 2006). Food and paper are only incurred with each burger sold.
For McDonald's, payroll and employee benefits for the three years ended December 31, 2003 to 2005 were $3,411.4 million, $3,726.3 million, and $4,039.2 million respectively, constituting 23.84%, 24.00%, and 24.57% of the total operating costs and expenses respectively (McDonald's Corporation, 2005). For Burger King, payroll and employee benefits for the three years ended June 30, 2004 to 2006 were $382 million, $415 million, and $446 million respectively, constituting 22.72%, 23.20%, and 23.75% of the total operating costs and expenses respectively (Burger King Holdings, Inc. a, 2006). Although payroll and employee benefits for support staff such as finance and human resources are more or less fixed cost, we can reasonably assume that they are only a small proportion of total payroll and employee benefits. Since McDonald's has more than 8,000 restaurants worldwide (McDonald's Corporation, 2005) and Burger King has more than 1,200 restaurants worldwide (Burger King Holdings, Inc. ...
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