Competition takes bite out of McDonald's sales


McDonald’s yesterday reported a 1.8 per cent drop in October sales at established restaurants around the world, its first monthly sales fall since March 2003, hurt by tougher competition and a soft economy.

October sales at McDonald’s restaurants open at least 13 months fell 2.2 per cent in both the United States and Europe and dropped 2.4 per cent in the Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa region.

While the sales declines were expected, they were steeper than Wall Street estimated.

The renewed competition and weak economy are presenting challenges for new chief executive Don Thompson, who took over on July 1st.

Edward Jones analyst Jack Russo expects McDonald’s to respond with even more promotions in November, but said Superstorm Sandy was likely to weigh on sales. – (Reuters)