What happened

Shares of coffee giant Starbucks (SBUX 3.41%) popped 18% in November, according to data provided by S&P Global Market Intelligence. The company kicked off the month with solid financial results that sparked a big jump in the stock price. And from there, Starbucks stock trended higher but roughly inline with the return of the S&P 500.

So what

Starbucks reported financial results for the fourth quarter of its fiscal 2022 on Nov. 3. In Q4, the company generated record quarterly revenue of $8.4 billion. And posting record quarterly revenue at a time like this is actually quite impressive.

The quarterly record is impressive because Starbucks in China is still flailing. Consider that almost one out of every six Starbucks locations in the world are located in China. But the country is still restricted greatly by the COVID-19 pandemic, affecting consumer traffic at cafes. Because of this, same-store sales in China were down a whopping 24% year over year in fiscal 2022.

China is huge for Starbucks. Sales in China are down. And yet Starbucks is still hitting revenue records. That's encouraging.

Moreover, same-store sales in China were "only" down 16% year over year in Q4, better than the full-year decline of 24%. This suggests sales are trending in the right direction, which was encouraging to analysts. Indeed, Citi analyst Jon Tower raised his price target for Starbucks stock from $90 per share to $93 per share, citing business momentum in international markets, according to The Fly

Now what

I agree with many of the analysts that the future looks bright for Starbucks in fiscal 2023 and beyond. The company plans to open around 9,000 new locations over just the next three years, which should be a big revenue driver. But the company also has two big upcoming catalysts for earnings.

First, sales in China are improving for Starbucks. But they're still down overall. However, following protests in the country, China's government is reportedly moving away from parts of its zero-Covid policy, which should help economic activity pick back up. I expect sales in China to fully recover for Starbucks in time, giving it a dramatic boost in operating income as it leverages fixed costs.

Second, Starbucks' management is going to start repurchasing shares again in fiscal 2023. By reducing the share count, it can boost earnings on a per-share basis, all other things being equal.

Ongoing earnings growth will help support Starbucks' dividend. On Nov. 25, Starbucks increased its dividend 8% from the previous quarter. The dividend of $0.53 per share marked the 12th consecutive year that Starbucks has raised its dividend -- an impressive streak.

With ongoing sales growth and catalysts to increase earnings, Starbucks is on a solid path for 2023 and beyond.