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McDonald's U.S. comps lead global increase

August same-store sales increase 3.9% in U.S., 3.5% globally

McDonald’s Corp. reported Friday a global same-store sales increase of 3.5 percent for August, with the United States leading the company’s worldwide performance as same-store sales at those locations increased 3.9 percent.

McDonald’s stated that the continued popularity of the McCafé beverage line, breakfast offerings like Fruit & Maple Oatmeal, and new Premium Chicken sandwiches drove results in the United States in August.

“August marks our 100th consecutive month of global comparable-sales growth, demonstrating the ongoing customer appeal of McDonald’s great-tasting food, offered at an outstanding value in our modern and convenient restaurants,” chief executive Jim Skinner said in a statement.

It was the first time since November 2010 that the United States had the highest same-store sales increase of McDonald’s three reported divisions. In November 2010, U.S. locations posted a 4.9 percent same-store sales increase on a national McRib promotion and less difficult year-over-year comparisons.

In August, McDonald’s posted a same-store sales gain of 2.7 percent in Europe and a same-store sales decrease of 0.3 percent decrease in the Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa segment, or APMEA. The McDonald’s system includes about 33,000 restaurant locations, about 14,000 of which are in the United States.

Separately, Bernstein Research senior analyst Sara Senatore estimated in a research note that the “other countries” segment containing Latin America and Canada — which McDonald’s Corp. does not break out — produced a 12.2-percent increase in same-store sales in August. She noted that Latin America and Canada account for approximately 10 percent of McDonald’s systemwide sales.

She also noted that Japan’s same-store sales weakened to an 8.2-percent decrease in August, from a 3.8-percent decrease in July, which offset growth from APMEA’s other big markets, Australia and China. Guest counts in Japan declined 5.9 percent and average check fell 2.4 percent, Senatore wrote, caused in large part by changes in consumer behavior to accommodate electricity-saving measures put in place after the March 11 earthquake. Japan also faced a difficult comparison to a year ago, when it posted a 9.2-percent same-store sales increase.

Across APMEA, McDonald’s is pushing value offerings, breakfast, and convenience upgrades like drive-thrus and extended hours to drive sales, the company said. McDonald’s also reported that restaurants in the United Kingdom and Russia led the way for Europe, where ongoing efforts to remodel stores, introduce premium offerings and develop locally relevant menu items have produced recent success.

Contact Mark Brandau at [email protected].
Follow him on Twitter: @Mark_from_NRN

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