What happened

Shares of fast-food chain Jack in the Box (NASDAQ:JACK) soared on Thursday, rising as much as 21.6%. As of 3:05 EDT, however, the stock was up 19.2%.

The stock's gain follows a business update from the fast-food company after market close on Wednesday, showing preliminary results that may have been better than some investors were expecting in light of the weak economic environment.

A chart showing a stock price moving higher

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

The company said total same-store sales for its fiscal second quarter, which ended on April 12, are estimated to have declined 4.2% year over year. On average, analysts were expecting same-store sales in Jack in the Box's fiscal second quarter to decline 9.4%. 

For the seven-week period ending March 8 (the period before consumers began sheltering at home), same-store sales were up 5.2% year over year.

The company also importantly said that more than 99% of its restaurants remain open during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Now what

Looking ahead, the company opted to withdraw its 2020 guidance, citing the "unprecedented adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on business results..." This is a common move for many companies during this time as businesses cope with uncertainty.