NEW YORK Pershing Square Capital Management LP, the activist hedge fund founded by William Ackman, disclosed Feb. 14 a 1.5-percent stake in McDonald's Corp., leading some to speculate that the investor is gearing up to pressure the largest restaurant company to increase its level of refranchsing or to take on a leveraged recapitalization. In a filing with federal regulators that outlines end-of-year holdings, Pershing said it held about 18.5 million shares of McDonald's common stock, ...

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